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Transportation Justice (Research)

Alameda CTC Introduction to Briefing Book and Transportation Needs

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Alameda CTC Introduction to Briefing Book and Transportation NeedsThe 2012 Countywide Transportation Plan (CWTP) and potential Transportation Expenditure Plan (TEP) are being developed at a time of substantial change in transportation policy at the federal, state and regional levels, as well as a time of great economic uncertainty. The challenges presented by new and untested regulatory frameworks including the implementation of SB 375 and AB 32, which are designed to promote sustainability and reduce carbon emissions from transportation sources; the impacts of a multimodal regional transportation plan building on MTC’s goals of “economy, environment and equity;” and a funding framework that has yet to be resolved at the federal and state levels, creates a climate that is both challenging and opportune
for reimagining mobility for the coming decades. While the environment is uncertain, it is clear that we are in the midst of a lasting and profound period of change and that continuing our investments on a “straight line” into the future is neither viable nor sustainable. This draft Briefing Book provides an initial framework for moving forward with development of the 2012 Alameda Countywide Transportation Plan and Transportation Expenditure Plan. It serves as an overview of existing transportation conditions in Alameda County and a brief look into the future to see what the coming decades hold for Alameda County.

Putting Schools on the Map: Linking Transit-Oriented Development, Families, and Schools in the SF Bay Area

Putting Schools On the Map

In the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area region, municipal and regional leaders are grappling with how to plan for the expected growth of the coming decades. Because of the projected increases in residents under 18 years of age, access to high quality schools – defined by both the educational quality of school programs and a school’s role as a local, place-based community asset – will continue to play a strong part in where families choose to live in the region. Interest in Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) has grown across the country in the last decade and is increasingly employed as a strategy to achieve environmentally sustainable infill development and auto use reduction. The Great Communities Collaborative (GCC) in the San Francisco Bay Area has developed an aspirational vision for guiding new development that aims to increase equity, support families, and create mixed income communities. Given the GCC’s “aspirational” TOD strategy, this paper looks at what must happen to realize these goals. In particular, we examine the connections between TOD and families, which, by extension, includes making the link among TOD, schools, and expanding educational opportunities for all children. This paper is the first of its kind; there is very little research on TOD and families and virtually no research on the relationship between TOD and schools. Therefore, we take an exploratory approach to understanding and framing these interconnections, and provide a rationale for the linkages at this nexus. The findings in this paper are the result of extensive case study research, interviews, and focus groups conducted throughout the Bay Area.

New Report Finds That Gentrification in Transit-Rich Neighborhoods Increases Housing Costs, Endangers Transit Ridership

Maintaining Diversity in America's Transit-Rich NeighborhoodsBOSTON, MA – A new report by the Kitty & Michael Dukakis Center for Urban & Regional Policy at Northeastern University validates concerns that the growing popularity of rail transit can bring undesirable changes to nearby neighborhoods.  “While patterns of neighborhood change varied,” explained lead author Stephanie Pollack, “the most predominant pattern we saw was one in which neighborhood renters are forced to pay more for housing and vehicle ownership becomes more common as neighborhood incomes rise.  If gentrification is defined as a pattern of neighborhood change marked by rising housing costs and incomes, we found evidence of gentrification in the majority of newly transit-served neighborhoods we studied.” The report, Maintaining Diversity in America’s Transit-Rich Neighborhoods: Tools for Equitable Neighborhood Change, includes new research analyzing socioeconomic changes in 42 neighborhoods in 12 metropolitan areas first served by rail transit between 1990 and 2000. Co-author Barry Bluestone, a housing expert and Dean of Northeastern University’s School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs, noted that the report’s findings confirm other research that shows neighborhoods with a large number of renters are more susceptible to gentrification. “In the neighborhoods where new light rail stations were built, almost every aspect of neighborhood change was magnified,” Bluestone explained.  “Rents rose faster; owner-occupied units became more prevalent.  Before transit was built, these neighborhoods had been dominated by low-income, renter households.”  Bluestone also noted that, as calculated in the report, slightly over half of all rental housing units in the United States are located in the relatively small number of metropolitan areas served by rail transit. Pollack, a transportation policy expert and associate director of the Dukakis Center, similarly noted that the 37 metropolitan regions with rail transit systems “constitute just over 10 percent of all U.S. metropolitan areas, but are both economically important and extraordinarily diverse.”  According to the report, nearly half of all Americans and more than two thirds of all U.S. workers live in metropolitan areas served by rail transit.  These regions are home to over half of all blacks, 60 percent of all Hispanics and 70 percent of all immigrants in the U.S.

Environmental Injustice in the U.S. and Recommendations for Eliminating Disparities

Civil Rights Law

This report and its recommendations provide a roadmap for the Obama Ad-ministration to move forward the goal of ensuring equal treatment under the law for all communities and to provide focus and attention on those communities – low-income, indigenous, and people of color communities – whose lives are threatened by environ-mental assaults of every kind. As the country grapples with the current oil spill disaster in the Gulf Coast, we look forward to discussions with the Obama Administration and its various agencies on protecting environmental justice communities. Now is the Time to achieve environ-mental justice and we are delighted to offer this report toward reaching that goal.

Transportation, Land Use and Greenhouse Gases A Bay Area Resource Guide

Hydro BusForty percent of the Bay Area’s greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs)—nearly 42 million metric tons a year—come from our cars, trucks, buses, trains, ships and planes. While the Bay Area has begun a serious discussion on ways to reduce transportation GHGs (primarily carbon dioxide, or CO2), we need better information to help us understand which strategies will yield the most cost-effective results. In addition, we must develop a clearer understanding of the important roles that each stakeholder—regional agencies, local governments, businesses, community groups and residents—must play if we are to significantly reduce our transportation “carbon footprint.” The scale of the task ahead is daunting. The chart on page 5 shows the reductions that must be made (both in total and per-capita emissions) for California to reach its climate goals for 2020 and 2050. Since California’s population is expected to grow significantly in this time period, we must strategically focus on transportation strategies that will make a major impact on emissions.The goal of this guide is to spark discussion and generate new ideas in the Bay Area transportation community.

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