A bit of a last minute warning, but Charles Marohn from the excellent organization "Strong Towns" is speaking at MIT at the Department of Urban Studies and Planning Monday night at 6PM
Information can be found here.
If you're not familiar with Strong Towns, you should really check it out. It approaches "livable streets" through a development and economic lens. It's also largely focused on a kind of town- one with a pre-war center, but which has increasingly become dominated by automobile infrastructure- in which many people despair of creating livable streets. The tone of the site is aimed at civic leaders and city planners, and I believe that Mr Marohn is a civil engineer, and I believe that he has experience from the "other side" of the table.
In Boston, the density creates a lot of easy arguments for non- automotive transportation. It will be interesting to see the rational arguments (as opposed to the sentimental ones of the new urbanist movement) for density in a more suburban/ small town context. Aaron Naparastek will be moderating a discussion after the talk, and I think it will be a very interesting conversation.