The Most Influential Streetfilm of All Time

For the last 12 weeks we’ve been counting down the most influential Streetfilms in preparation for our 10-year anniversary benefit, which is coming up on Monday. When we picked that date, we knew a long and draining election season would be over, but we did not anticipate this result. We’re looking forward to gathering with our readers and supporters to face the challenges ahead together.

Thank you everyone for supporting our work, whether it be as a reader or a contributor — we need you! On Monday, there are no sales at the door. If you’ve been meaning to buy a ticket, this is your chance. We’d love to see you.

Ciclovia: Bogotá

Number of plays: 239,000

Publish date: December 1, 2007

Why is it here? This video established Streetfilms as a leader in great media that connects with people beyond transportation wonk circles. And most importantly, it gave advocates and volunteers across the world an important resource to make the case for Ciclovia-style events in their cities. At the time we published it, there were just a handful of events like this in America. After this Streetfilm was widely shared, in 2008, nearly 20 major cities hosted open streets events. In one famous story of how San Francisco’s Mayor Gavin Newsom saw the film and immediately put plans in motion for what became Sunday Streets. Ciclovias and open streets have exploded since then.

Fun fact: This was our most-viewed Streetfilm for more than six years! Although in the last 10 years I’ve made far better technical films, this one remains the nearest to my heart. It got me to develop a more in-the-moment shooting style — I literally didn’t know what we would see next.

I had such a wonderful time on this trip with Aaron Naparstek, Karla Quintero, Ethan Kent — plus the indefatigable Gil Peñalosa, without whose help this film would never have happened. And this is the kicker: One late night stuck in my hotel room, I decided to join match.com and met my future wife that very night!

The Streetfilms Countdown so far:

#12: Lakewood, Ohio: The Suburb Where Everyone Can Walk to School

#11: Mark Gorton Interviews Enrique Peñalosa

#10: Zurich: Where People Are Welcome and Cars Are Not

#9: Sneckdowns

#8: Complete Streets: It’s About More Than Bike Lanes

#7: Park(ing) Day

#6: NYC Streets Metamorphosis

#5: Bogotá BRT/Transmilenio

#4: Groningen: The World’s Cycling City

#3: The Case for Physically Separated Bike Lanes

#2: Cycling Copenhagen, Though North American Eyes

#1: Ciclovia: Bogotá

  • Boeings+Bikes

    Just re-watching… this Streetfilm introduced the idea that later became NYC’s SummerStreets to the community boards and local decision makers in New York and brought a level of understanding that couldn’t come from maps, photos or DOT presentations.

    How about a “10 years later” Streetfilm, collecting footage and interviews from Cyclovia-style events around the world, looking at what’s changed in the 10 years since the original film? Biggest disappointment: NYC’s SummerStreets has been wildly popular but hasn’t been expanded in coverage or dates/times – only 3 mornings a year, and the same 8-mile route. Shame on NYC!