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Publisher's Summary

In Confessions of a Recovering Engineer, renowned speaker and author of Strong Towns Charles L. Marohn, Jr., delivers an accessible and engaging exploration of America's transportation system, laying bare the reasons why it no longer works as it once did, and how to modernize transportation to better serve local communities.

You'll discover real-world examples of poor design choices and how those choices have dramatic and tragic effects on the lives of the people who use them. You'll also find case studies and examples of design improvements that have revitalized communities and improved safety.

This important book shows you: the values of the transportation professions, how they are applied in the design process, and how those priorities differ from those of the public; how the standard approach to transportation ensures the maximum amount of traffic congestion possible is created each day, and how to fight that congestion on a budget; and bottom-up techniques for spending less and getting higher returns on transportation projects, all while improving quality of life for residents. Perfect for anyone interested in why transportation systems work - and fail to work - the way they do, Confessions of a Recovering Engineer is a fascinating insider's peek behind the scenes of America's transportation systems.

©2021 Charles L. Marohn, Jr. (P)2021 Ascent Audio

What listeners say about Confessions of a Recovering Engineer

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Well Worth Your Time To Read or Listen To!

Not exactly a sequel; it is a different way of approaching the same material from a more personal perspective. He doesn't just talk about the problem and give a solution (or list of possible solutions); he explains the roots or philosophy of the problems as one who was part of the problem. I am going to either listen to both books again or read the Kindle versions, want to understand them that much. Also, kudos to "Not Just Bikes" YouTube channel for pointing this author out to me!

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The Engineering Profession is Changing

This is a must read for every engineer and engineering student. It's also a valuable source for city planners, managers, and political leaders.

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Very eye opening.

As a county administrator, I find this kind of thoughtful honesty refreshing. I commend the author for his endeavors.

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Just great!

Thank you! This book should be required reading in engineering education. Especially in civil/transportation engineering.

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Road vs street vs “stroad”

A very compelling follow up of Strong Towns. A lot of the similar concepts in Strong Towns plays out in this book, with a much stronger focus on roads vs streets, the institutional forces behind the creation of stroads, and a lot of compelling data that has come forward in light of COVID-19. Would recommend if you have not read Strong Towns or want a deeper dive into the transportation aspect of Strong Towns.

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Very interesting

It’s interesting but sometimes repetitive. I don’t have an engineering background but the book was easy to understand. It’s more about general concepts rather than engineering details. I would recommend it if you’re interested in traffic management

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Repetitive, but important

Quite a few passages felt like they were repeated, almost verbatim, from previous sections of the book. The message is important though, and the logic was sound throughout. Marohn's credentials lend further weight to his observations.

I didn't agree with the decision not to have a description of the tables and charts from the physical/e-reader copy, but felt the performance was otherwise fairly easy to listen to.

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great book, great ideas, wrong reader

I loved this book. it was very interesting and informative. but the reader pronounces street as shtreet and strong as shtrong. this wouldn't be a problem if the book was about streets and by the founder of strong towns. I would read this book rather than listen

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A Large complex topic broken down so well!

Topics like urban and transportation design are extremely complex, but Chuck breaks it down into easily understood segments for professionals and non-professionals alike. This is no small feat and deserves recognition for making this topic accessible to the masses.

I found his points refreshingly absent of enflaming rhetoric and stayed on point with his thesis. While that may sound sterile, it makes the logic argument more objective and fare to his points and sparked more interest. I did not however think Christopher Douyard was the appropriate choice for narration. His performance took the subject matter over the edge from "serious thoughtful thesis" into "dry scientific paper" territory. Chuck's writing has reflections of his character that were not present as a result.

Despite this, the book is an excellent follow up to his first book and definitely worth a read. I have yet to find a better and more comprehensive argument addressing the issues plaguing our public spaces. The points are logical and the potential impacts are all encompassing. I hope you'll read this as well and allow some humble reflection on the built environments around your slice of America.

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A compelling case for rethinking community planning

This book brought a human element to an often dry topic (traffic engineering) while providing listeners with tools to advocate for better living conditions in their own cities. Definitely a worthwhile read!