Geography alumna named Director of Federal Infrastructure Strategy for City of Philadelphia

Lily smiles at the camera on a quiet urban street. She is waearing a patterned scarf and has shoulder length sandy coloured hair.

UBC Geography alumna Lily Canan Reynolds has been named the first Director of Federal Infrastructure Strategy for the City of Philadelphia’s Office of Transportation, Infrastructure and Sustainability (OTIS).

Reynolds graduated from UBC in 2010 with a major in geography and a minor in sociology. She went on to develop grassroots community programs with the Association of Neighbourhood Houses of BC, and later completed a masters in urban studies at Simon Fraser University.

Now, she will lead Philadelphia’s Infrastructure Solutions Team, a cross-departmental group who will ensure that the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) builds wealth for Philadelphia residents who have long been excluded from opportunity, especially people of color.

In her previous role as the Deputy Director for Complete Streets, Reynolds oversaw the development of the City’s first Vision Zero Capital Plan, released an updated Vision Zero Action Plan, and led her staff to implement transportation safety programming and messaging.

“I believe that the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will fund public works projects that can not only work for the public but can put the public to work. These projects are a tremendous opportunity to grow Philadelphia’s workforce by creating new jobs, new expertise, and new wealth in our city,” says Reynolds.

“Past generations of infrastructure projects have divided Black and Brown neighborhoods from safe transportation options and cut people out of economic opportunity. BIL positions us to build new infrastructure for Philadelphia and invest in Philadelphia workers. Throughout my career and during my time here in Philadelphia, I’ve put community first by listening and learning before leading. We can do things better and I am thrilled to be leading this effort to do just that.”