"Because cycling was given a low priority within engineering culture, it was given to the junior engineers who had just come out of university. They were more interested in actually doing something, and didn't mind ruffling some feathers. And that's helped create that culture change."
John Forester is alive and well, and knows what the problem is.
His book is a bible to some, shaping views on transportation cycling, which in turn helped shape some of the transportation policies — and facilities built, or not built — in British Columbia over the past few decades.