November 3, 2008
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TransitVision 2050: Far-Reaching Effort Sees Globally Competitive Transportation System
America’s public transportation industry will play a critical role in shaping a sustainable world and enhancing the quality of life. This is the focus of APTA’s far reaching, visionary effort, TransitVision 2050, which envisions an efficient, multi-modal transportation system which will be the key to global competitiveness.
APTA began this major industry initiative 18 months ago, asking members, stakeholders, and partners to take a look to the future. Questions asked included: How do we ensure that a projected population of over 400 million in 2050 has the transportation choices it needs for mobility? How will we meet the needs of our aging population expected to double by 2030?
The APTA Board of Directors recently approved the final report.
This vision sees that “In 2050, America’s energy-efficient, multi-modal, environmentally sustainable transportation system powers the greatest nation on earth.” In this vision, “by 2050 America’s investment in balanced transportation systems has enabled it to sever its dependency on foreign oil…the switch to high-quality public transportation systems has given individuals the choice to avoid climate-unfriendly lifestyles…people from all walks of life have freedom, opportunity, and independence to pursue their American dream. The quality of life for people in many generations to come is enriched as a result.”
APTA Immediate Past Chair Michael S. Townes credited the APTA TransitVision 2050 Task Force—chaired by Elliot G. (Lee) Sander, executive director and chief executive officer of New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority—with working hard on the initiative, saying: “We gathered up some of the best minds in transit today and asked them to help craft this vision…and I am pleased that…we have our new vision—with a world’s best transportation system that will provide for economic health, a high quality of life, and a sustainable environment.”
Themes included in TransitVision 2050 include:
* A national transportation plan for the 21st century;
* Stable and reliable investments in a vastly expanded system, coming from federal, state, and local governments, transit-generated revenues, and public-private partnerships;
* A single multi-modal and integrated system incorporating public transportation, roads, and other elements of the surface transportation network;
* New regional institutions to plan and implement multi-state infrastructure projects;
* Long-term outcomes and performance;
* A growing market and private sector role;
* Technology as a tool in an evolving and ever-changing world;
* Legacy as a core value;
* Transit organizations as mobility managers; and
* Career appeal to the workforce.