Join me, along with my co-hosts Joycelyn and Erin, as we dive into an insightful conversation with Lanrick Bennett Jr., Toronto's first Bicycle Mayor, and the Executive Director of Charlie's FreeWheels. We explore his tenure as a bike mayor and the expansive network of BYCS-appointed mayors, stretching from India to Uganda and beyond.

In this episode, we discuss crucial topics such as Vision Zero and efforts to reduce vehicular-related fatalities in Toronto. We delve into designing inclusive cycling infrastructure and offer advice for those looking to cycle in the city and who want to get involved in making their streets safer for all.

Key insights from the episode include:
  • Understanding the significance of inclusive cycling infrastructure
  • Exploring how Shaw St has evolved into Toronto's cycling haven
  • The importance of political will in creating safer streets
  • Ways to actively contribute to advocating for safer streets in your community
  • Insights from international transit advocates on Toronto's cycling infrastructure
  • What it takes to ensure safer streets for cyclists, pedestrians, and drivers alike
  • The global network of Bicycle Mayors and their impact on urban development

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Guest: Lanrick Bennett Jr., Bicycle Mayor of Toronto + Charlie's Freewheels

Lanrick Bennett Jr is currently the Executive Director of Charlie's FreeWheels. His previous work has kept him within the active transportation, urban design, and placemaking sphere. His city advocacy work started with his son traveling to all 100 libraries by public transit. He volunteers with the Bike Brigade and HousingNowTO and has been Toronto’s first Bicycle Mayor since 2021.

Co-Host: Joycelyn Guan, Urban Planner

Joycelyn is an urban planner passionate about collaborating with others to develop equitable, accessible and inclusive neighbourhoods and cities. They are interested in connecting people through community economic development, parks and recreation, and sports and sports infrastructure.

Co-Host: Erin Asaba, Aspiring Urban Planner


  • 01:55 | Introduction to Joycelyn  
  • 04:47 | Introduction to Lanrick and how he was selected as Toronto’s first Bicycle Mayor 
  • 08:31 | What is BYCS?
  • 14:49 | Why do you cycle?
  • 22:57 | How do we design inclusive cycling infrastructure so that it benefits our cities and communities (and integrated into the broader mobility/transportation network)?
  • 29:18 | Alexandra's cycling story
  • 33:17 | Paint a picture for us of what the cycling landscape is like in Toronto? How does Toronto’s cycling infrastructure compare to other cities around the world, and what can we learn from these comparisons?
  • 45:24 | About Charlie's FreeWheels: The origins, their build-a-bike program, and the impact they have on youth
  • 51:45 | Advice for those who want to cycle in Toronto?
  • 54:38 | How to advocate for better cycling safety in the city
  • 57:38 | What's next for Lanrick now that his term is over?
  • 59:04 | His work leading Kidical Mass Rides and East End for All
  • 1:04:46 | Key takeaways from Joycelyn and Alexandra

Show Notes



This episode is co-sponsored by the University of Toronto School of Cities and the Department of Geography and Planning. 

The School of Cities "convenes urban-focused researchers, educators, students, practitioners and the general public to explore and address complex urban challenges, with the aim of making cities and urban regions more sustainable, prosperous, inclusive and just". To learn more about the School of Cities visit

To learn more about the Department of Geography and Planning and the different undergraduate and graduate programs available please visit

  • Music Producer: Imany Lambropoulos
  • Podcast Host and Graphic Designer: Alexandra Lambropoulos

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