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How DC’s local transportation trends emerged within TransportationCamp DC

11 Jan 2023 | Posted by | 1 Comment |
Shabazz Stewart giving keynote on stage at transportation camp with audience in foreground

Last Saturday, we hosted more than 300 people for TransportationCamp DC at George Mason University’s Arlington campus. This “unconference” lends attendees the mic to discuss their transportation passions, ideas, and concerns with other advocates and experts. TCamps are also products of their local context, so here’s a quick glance at some of the issues that emerged—through that specific local lens.

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The long fight for connectivity in Milwaukee

Successfully halting construction on the Park East Freeway in Milwaukee in 1977 was a major early win for advocates. But removing highways is more complicated. Milwaukee confronted that problem in the late 1990s and early 2000s when they attempted to remove the portion that had been built—a story which can serve as a model for other highway removal efforts.

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Hybrid TransportationCamp DC, explained

TransportationCamp DC 2023 is quickly approaching, and we’re excited to see what you all have to bring to the table. TransportationCamp is an “unconference,” which means that you, the participants, will determine the agenda by proposing and leading sessions. This year, we’re doing things a little bit differently with a hybrid format that uses virtual and in-person sessions.

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Eliminating driver error doesn’t work. What does? Part II: Designing solutions

Design-based solutions, which accept and plan for human mistakes, can avoid the pitfalls of behavioral solutions. A recent report from New York City’s Department of Transportation sheds some light on which of those solutions work best—and for whom.

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Eliminating driver error doesn’t work. What does? Part I

That's the temperature not the speed limit sign

Billions of dollars in new federal highway funding are flowing into road safety programs, so we wanted to review the research on which interventions can save lives on America’s roads—and which are failing to do so. All the available data tell us one thing clearly: strategies that fail to accept human error and reduce speeds also fail to reduce road casualties.

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Recruiting and retaining the best: Transit workforce best practices

Prospective applicants line up for a Sacramento transit hiring event

Transit agencies now have the federal funding needed to develop a world-class transit workforce, but pulling it off is another question. We’ve compiled strategies for success from agencies that have implemented real solutions to empower their operator and maintenance workforce.

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Reconnecting Communities: Initiating restorative transportation justice

Much of the work of smart transportation focuses on playing defense against divisive infrastructure projects that would make travel more difficult for drivers and nondrivers alike. Now, communities and advocates have a small but real opportunity to go on offense and remove or mitigate harmful stretches of transportation infrastructure.

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The STB is finally acting to improve freight railroads. Will it be enough?

Freight train

After years of looking the other way while deliveries suffered, the Surface Transportation Board finally ruled that freight railroads have to improve their service. Here’s what it could mean for goods and travelers alike.

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The infrastructure law is not climate legislation, but states could make it green

A man observes a stretch of Dock Street in Annapolis, Md., that flooded after the area received over three quarters of an inch of rain in 24 hours on Jan. 25, 2010.

Though distinctly not serious about fighting climate change, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA, the infrastructure law) can still help lead to some decent climate outcomes if states and metro areas make the choice to prioritize doing so with their flexible funding.

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How will the infrastructure law improve active transportation and Complete Streets?

A Complete Street with a short crosswalk, two bike lanes, two lanes for cars, and wide sidewalks for pedestrians

When done right, active transportation infrastructure can cut greenhouse gas emissions, improve public health, keep people safer, and promote equity. But how will the new infrastructure law’s $650 billion in formula and competitive grant programs help to build safer, Complete Streets? What policies changed to prioritize active transportation investments? Here’s what you need to know, and how you can make these programs and policies work for you.

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The infrastructure law and safety: Will it be able to move the needle?

The new infrastructure law authorizes around $650 billion to fund transportation infrastructure through formula and competitive grant programs, some of which have safety as a core emphasis. Here’s what you need to know about the new money and (modest) policy changes to the safety program, as well as how you can make them work for you.

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Positioning for competitive grant application success

A conference room filled with diverse people taking notes

With scores of competitive, surface transportation grant programs to administer, USDOT faces a heavy lift to get these programs off the ground, on top of administering the legacy programs that already existed. How should prospective grant applicants start preparing for success?

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Transit funding in the infrastructure bill: what can it do for me?

Bus stopping in front of a crosswalk filled with pedestrians

The new infrastructure bill authorizes $109 billion to fund public transit projects through formula and competitive grant programs. Here’s what you need to know about the new money and (modest) policy changes to the transit program, as well as how you can make them work for you.

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Transit funds could crack under the pressure of the budget deadline

entrance to the USDOT headquarters

The upcoming continuing resolution to fund the government and avert a shutdown won’t include transportation spending, piling on the pressure to pass the infrastructure deal and budget reconciliation. Congress could end up gutting the reconciliation package to make a deal.

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