David Vega-Barachowitz joined the staff of NACTO in February 2011. From 2011 through 2014, he served as the first Director of NACTO’s Designing Cities initiative (2013-14), the Sustainable Initiatives Program Manager (2011-13), and a NACTO Fellow (2011). Under the leadership of former New York City Transportation Commissioner and then-NACTO President Janette Sadik-Khan, David shepherded many of the organization’s critical contributions to the sustainable transportation field, including the Urban Street Design Guide 2012-13 and the Urban Bikeway Design Guide in 2011-12. He grew and facilitated NACTO’s peer-to-peer network for street design, bike share, and other initiatives, coordinated outreach campaigns to the US Department of Transportation as well as city and state transportation agencies around the country, and travelled to major cities around the US to conduct trainings and “road shows” on NACTO’s work. In 2012, he managed and directed NACTO’s first Designing Cities Conference in New York, held at New York University.
Prior to joining NACTO, David was granted a traveling fellowship to study urban design and sustainable transportation in Northern Europe, with a focus on bicycle infrastructure in the Netherlands and Denmark. In 2007-2009, he worked at the New York City Transit Authority and New York City Department of Parks and Recreation. He holds a Bachelors degree from Columbia University in Urban Studies with Architecture and is pursuing a Masters of City Planning and Architecture from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he conducts research on urban design in the post-industrial American context. He is the co-author of the upcoming book, Start-Up City (Island Press, 2015) with Gabe Klein, and the author and illustrator of the blog Cities of Philomena. David is currently based in New York, NY and Cambridge, MA.