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Secretary LaHood on T4 America’s poll: “People want better options”

Secretary LaHood at our petition delivery last November

We got some superb media coverage last week on the release of our national poll and there’s an engaging discussion underway today on the National Journal experts blog, but we wanted to especially highlight a terrific post today from Ray LaHood, U.S. Secretary of Transportation, on his official DOT blog.

While LaHood was showered with gratitude from many for his statement at the National Bike Summit that bicyclists and pedestrians should be accommodated in our transportation network and no longer treated as second-class citizens, he also took a verbal lashing from some defenders of the transportation status quo — but not the pulse of the American people, as our poll clearly shows.

While having the concrete numbers from a bipartisan national survey is encouraging and helpful, Secretary LaHood says that most notably, our poll echoes the same drumbeat he’s heard all around the country from people in big cities, small towns and all the places in between during his first 14 months in office.

This is precisely what I’ve been talking about here in this blog with regard to livabilitytransit, and walking and biking. I have traveled all over this country in the past 14 months, and everywhere I go people want better options. Options that offer reduced greenhouse-gas emissions. Options that offer reduced fuel-consumption. Options that offer better health. Options that bring communities together.

Now, let me make this absolutely clear: I never said we would stop repairing, maintaining, and–yes–even expanding roadways. I said only that it’s time to stop assuming that putting more cars on more roads is the best way to move people around more effectively.

This survey demonstrates that, by and large, the American people get that. I never doubted them, but it sure is nice to see the numbers.

So, thank you, Transportation For America, for that 82%-strong vote of confidence.

The pleasure is all ours, Secretary.

No Comments

  1. Ellen Johnson

    8 years ago

    Who is the person within your department that is responsible for ensuring federal transportation policy and dollars comply with the six liveability principals adopted by HUD/EPA and DOT?

    What role will “equity” and the development of affordable housing play in the allocation of federal transportation dollars?

    Will there be any effort to link efforts under the “Sustainable Community Initiative” with policy and dollars available under State level DOTs?

    Is there any federal DOT effort under way or under consideration similar to HUD’s regional liveability grants?

    How do you see regional land use/affordable housing plans coordinating with regional transportation planning?