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Transportation For America officially launches campaign platform

26 Feb 2009 | Posted by | 0 Comments | , ,

Today in Washington, D.C., Transportation for America held an event on Capitol Hill to formally announce our new coalition of more than 225 organizations and 17,000 individual members and to release the platform drafted with input from dozens of practitioners and stakeholders. In opening remarks, Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) called the coalition perhaps the “most formidable” such coalition assembled on behalf of transportation reform.

Rep. Earl Blumenauer addressed the guests and VIP’s gathered in the Capitol Caucus Room of the Cannon House Office Building

With events last night and this morning on Capitol Hill, we brought together leaders in the worlds of transportation, public health, business and social justice to launch the platform.

Our campaign platform calls on President Obama and Congress to launch a new federal transportation mission that breaks with the worn out ways of the status quo, helps put an end to America’s oil dependency, brings opportunity to all Americans and allows our country’s businesses to compete and thrive in the 21st Century.

Other panelists, including Dr. Georges Benjamin of the American Public Health Association, Judith Bell of PolicyLink, Richard Baron of McCormack Baron Salazar and Transportation for America campaign director James Corless, spoke on behalf of the public health benefits, implications for real estate development and the need for local areas to have greater latitude to address their mobility issues.

Mayor John Robert Smith of Meridian, Mississippi — a city that has worked hard to turn their rail connections into downtown reinvestment and vice versa — spoke at length about the need for the next phase of our transportation system to unite our country in the same way that Eisenhower envisioned the interstate system would help a collection of States be unified as a truly “United” States of America:

Few national issues offer a greater opportunity for imaginative change. And we need a Congress that will reach across the aisle that separates their parties, and reach across the geography that separate their states. These issues are complex and daunting, but we must act and act now. Our children and children’s children will hold us accountable. To fail would be to leave this nation as Eisenhower said, “As many separate parts.”

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Dr. Georges Benjamin of the American Public Health Association shows off his copy of the Platform.

The Platform is now available for you to download and read.

But more importantly, join us in urging Congress and the Obama adminstration to consider our platform as they move towards writing this year’s transportation bill. Add your voice to thousands of others urging a new direction for transportation!

Also today, the National Association of Realtors released a poll done in conjunction with Transportation for America that shows strong support for investment in public transportation, walking and biking and a better-managed and maintained highway system. Read the details about the NAR/T4 poll.

Transportation for America also announced that the coalition will launch a series of town hall meetings and provide materials for self-organized house parties where engaged citizens can talk about what a renewed national vision for transportation investment could mean for their communities. Watch here for more to come on that over the next several days and weeks.

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Mayor John Robert Smith of Meridian, Mississippi, left, and Rep. Earl Blumenauer take their respective turns at the mic this morning on Capitol Hill.

Photos licensed with Creative Commons by Steve Davis/Transportation for America

No Comments

  1. clemens baime

    9 years ago

    this is a dream come true!!!!!!

  2. Dave M

    9 years ago

    I wish i could get excited about all of this. Sadly here in Tennessee, we will never see passenger rail. The ” Powers that be ” seem only to care about CONCRETE

    i.e Roads and Bridges, to keep the Roadbuilders Association happy !

  3. Pingback: Streetsblog » Transportation for America Launches Campaign Platform

  4. Pingback: Streetsblog » Transportation for America Launches Its Campaign Platform

  5. Michel Garand

    9 years ago

    I’m glad to feel that America is taking the lead at last. The auto industry is in deep shit because they have not been listening to the consumer. As a southern Canadian (Québec), where roads are rough due to annual freezing and thawing, I have not bought an American car in decades, only because I had the choice between gas guzzlers that would come up with a major breakdown before 100,000 miles or smaller cars that would fall apart before 50,000, contrary to main Japanese imports. We currently own a Corolla that goes 43 miles/U.S gallon and is very reliable.

    With high speed trains all of Canada would go vacationing south again; your south! Best of luck for the Obama admistration and the American people, with these new mass transit projects.

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