Event: WalkBoston’s Talk the Walk Session: “Confessions of a Recovering Engineer,” 9/29 12pm on Zoom

Event: WalkBoston’s Talk the Walk Session: “Confessions of a Recovering Engineer,” 9/29 12pm on Zoom

WalkBoston’s Talk the Walk Session
“Confessions of a Recovering Engineer”
September 29, 12-1pm
Register for this event

Lunch hour discussion session on Zoom. Open to all. Eating is encouraged. Video is optional. 

“Talk the Walk” is our topic-driven discussion session (not just books!). These discussion sessions may include articles, podcasts, videos, and yes, maybe even a book or two. This session features the book “Confessions of a Recovering Engineer” by Chuck Marohn. The author will be joining us for a brief presentation to kick things off, followed by breakout groups for discussion questions, and if time allows, an author Q&A.

Charles Marohn, professional engineer and founder of the Strong Towns movement, lifts the curtain on America’s transportation system in his newest book, Confessions of a Recovering Engineer. In this book tour presentation, Marohn demonstrates how the values of engineers and other transportation professionals are applied in the design process, and how those priorities differ from the values of the general public. By showing how transportation investments are a means to an end and not an end unto themselves, Marohn reveals how the standard approach to issues like fighting congestion, addressing speeding, and designing intersections only makes transportation problems worse, at great cost in terms of both safety and resources. By contrast, the Strong Towns approach to transportation focuses on bottom-up techniques for spending less and getting higher returns, all while improving quality of life for residents of a community.

Discussion questions: 

  • Discuss Marohn’s distinguishing between a “Road” and a “Street.” Do you agree? Is it helpful? Where does this distinction not hold up?
  • Marohn indicates the hierarchy of engineer values are for road design for vehicles: speed, volume, safety, cost; where the public’s hierarchy is safety, cost, volume, speed. Agree? Disagree? How are these values reflected?
  • Has your experience with civil engineers & consultants reflected what Marohn is confessing? Do you see change happening? Examples?

Register for this meeting:


You will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. 

Articles to get you started:

Not sure if you’ll have time to read the whole book before 9/29 but still want to participate? A website with supplemental material was created to accompany the book. We’d encourage you to check out info from the intro and first three chapters.  

Want to go deeper? Buy the book! 

We encourage you to buy it from your local bookstore, or find a store near you via Bookshop

Here are a few stores you might consider supporting: 

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