About ModeShift

What is happening?

ModeShift is back another chance to learn, be inspired, to act. Expect events all week including daytime in-depth masterclasses, more tactical urbanism, another deep-dive into Dutch design by popular request (this time we’ll be looking at what the safe systems approach can do for Winnipeg’s most overlooked neighbourhoods) and out-of -the-box thinking.

Like last year, we have a plenary conference that is not to be missed with long-format keynote speeches featuring recognized experts in their field from around the world.

Again, we are taking our time with each speaker to create chances for you to meet, interact and work together because we know that the collaboration is what pays off in the end.  Look for hands-on components and tours too. Some of it is open to the public.  View the program as it is updated here.

Is there a theme? 

As always, ModeShift is an interdisciplinary look at human life through the lens of transportation and our changing habits and culture. We encourage ideas that challenge, surprise, provoke. That means This year, we’ll be taking a hard look at Vision Zero, with en emphasis on children and youth as the people who will have ti live with the choices we make now.  We’ll also be soul searching on the concept of equity and what that truly means for a transportation approach meant to connect us all.

Who should attend?


If you care about the future of the urban environments we share and see yourself as having a role in shaping them – however big or small – then this event is for you.  If your interest/expertise is in engineering, culture, urbanism, nature, communications, philosophy or politics, there definitely will be something for you to learn, say and do. We are making a special effort to involve people of diverse skill sets, ages and public/professional backgrounds.

Join us.

Why be a part of it?

As a city and as a species, we face significant challenges on foundational issues like equal access to food, clean water, housing and safe streets. We can also clearly see that some of the most effective fixes lie within the world of transportation because transportation touches everything we do. Fixing it has positive effects on many things: whether it’s the new job we get, the length and quality of time we spend outdoors, our likelihood of developing a disease or our ability to hear our own conversations in the street. This event’s goal is to help accelerate an active and sustained response to issues which we know we can fix. We are going to build a healthy, effective and exciting city and we will do it with a sense of urgency and resolve.

Who started this and why?

Together the Winnipeg Trails Association and Children’s Hospital Research Institute of Manitoba have embarked on a the 3 year ModeShift research project with the help and support of a bevy of partners.

We are studying active transportation infrastructure usage and looking for geographic links to diabetes and cardiovascular disease to reveal tangible homegrown evidence for something that we know is most likely true. Meanwhile, we are looking to catalyse a conversation.

The people who can make a difference are you and me. So rather than wait until our findings are released, we have chosen to promote the work by sparking action now.

The festival itself is made possible thanks to the support and

When is it?

The core “conference” component is Thursday, October 3rd.
Masterclasses and workshops will be running Monday, September 30 – Friday, October 4, 2019. 

Where is it?

Events will take place in a few different central locations around Winnipeg. Thursday October 3rd, everyone is gathering at the Manitoba Children’s Museum for plenary sessions and the core conference. 

Are all venues universally accessible?
Care will be taken to ensure that all venues are accessible from an indoor universal design standpoint, but some will be easier to arrive at on bicycle, foot, or wheelchair than others depending on your point of origin and their location. For more information on accessing venues, do not hesitate to contact us.