Transportation’s Transformation: NACo Webinar Today At 2pm

Transportation is undergoing a transformation – its starkest one since the first Model T rolled off the assembly line, argues Stephen Goldsmith for Governing.  How should counties adapt? The National Association of Counties (NACO) is hosting a free webinar today at 2 p.m. on this very subject – and it’s not too late to register.

Opportunities to share rides, cars and bikes already dramatically change the local transportation landscape, and we have yet to see what impact driverless vehicles will bring. Meanwhile, jurisdictions have miles to go in ensuring that transportation infrastructure accommodates those low- and middle-skill workers who are only able to reach about one quarter of their jobs within a 90-minute commute, according to BrookingsFrom Governing:

With more and better data available now than ever before, we need to think in terms of true mobility management. …

In the new data-enabled, service-oriented model, mayors and urban county executives will appoint mobility managers to enhance convenience and remove the transit deserts that plague many individuals who cannot afford cars and for whom inconveniently located bus routes provide little relief. These mobility managers will help smooth transitions between public, private and shared transportation services. Individuals will be able to plan and pay for trips all in one place. Gone will be the days of chasing after the bus — the bus will come to you right when you expect it.

[A government’s] goal … should be to improve mobility for all of its residents, creating a seamless system of transportation from what once were discrete components. Mobility managers should not be in the business of protecting any given transportation mode but should instead focus on creating value and reducing inefficiencies and inequities for the commuters they serve. ….

In a time when trust in the government is very low, improving mobility offers a great opportunity …. [A]ny improvements we can make to mobility will be felt quickly and broadly. The bus is leaving the station.

NACo’s webinar this afternoon, “Keeping Counties Moving: Innovations in Infrastructure, Goods Movement and Vehicle Technologies,” features Gary Piotrowicz, PE, PTOE, Deputy Managing Director/County Highway Engineer, Oakland County Road Commission, Michigan, and Andy Alden, Group Leader for Eco-Transportation and Alternative Technology, Virginia Tech Transportation Institute, and Executive Director of the I-81 Corridor Coalition. About the webinar:

Join us on this interactive webinar to learn how counties are improving transportations systems by working within and across megaregions to leverage technological innovations. Transportation experts will discuss national trends and current county projects in regional planning & autonomous and connected vehicle research, development and deployment.  This discussion will provide county elected officials and staff members a clearer picture of where the field of transportation is heading in the face of rapidly evolving freight infrastructure and vehicle technologies.