Panel of Community Reps, Business Leaders and Policy Experts to Assess New Technologies, Best Practices for Pedestrians, Transit, Bicycles and Vehicles
Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone announced today that he has created a Transportation Research, Innovation and Planning (TRIP) Team to advise the City on new technologies and procedures designed to increase accessibility, capacity, convenience and safety in all modes of local transportation. The advisory panel is composed of representatives drawn from the city's residential and business communities as well as Somerville-based transportation and parking policy experts.
With City officials providing support, the TRIP Team will have a broad mandate to review best practices and emergent technologies including: pedestrian improvements; transit access and promotion; bicycle safety; traffic calming strategies; parking configurations and payment systems; parking permits; consumer services and innovative transportation technologies.
"Over the past two years, Traffic and Parking has made tremendous progress in improving parking procedures, services and technologies - and we've continued to advance the expansion of bike lanes, bike sharrows and locations for bike corrals, as well as easier and more convenient parking permits and payment options at parking meters throughout Somerville" said Mayor Curtatone. "But with the Hubway bike rental kiosks coming to town this spring, with construction about to begin at Assembly Square on the Orange Line station, with design moving ahead on the Green Line Extension, and with some of Somerville's MBTA bus service still threatened by future service cuts, it's time to take a fresh look at our various transportation systems."
"When we reformed our parking rules in 2009, we had constructive and valuable guidance from an outside Parking Solutions Task Force," said Matthew Dias, Acting Director of Traffic and Parking. "This time, the Mayor wants to cast the net more widely and embrace modes and technologies that contribute to the convenience and mobility of Somerville residents, visitors and businesses. The TRIP Team will research, analyze and then advise us, on the applicability and cost-effectiveness of any and all technologies relating to all of our transportation modes."
TRIP Team membership includes:
Tony LaFuente - Ward 4 Alderman
Rebekah Gewirtz - Ward 6 Alderman
Lieutenant James Polito - Traffic Enforcement Unit, Somerville Police Department
Carrie Dancey, Executive Director, East Somerville Main Streets
Mimi Graney, Executive Director at Union Square Main Streets
Gregory Coughlin, Owner, Olde Magoun Saloon
Ian Judge, Manager, Somerville Theatre
Tim Talun of the Somerville Bicycle Committee
Alyssa Rosen of the Young Somerville Advisory Group
Todd Easton, Independent Travel Consultant
Courtney Koslow, Founder, Somerville Parking Advocacy and Reform Coalition
Mark Chase, Transportation and Planning Consultant
Joe Lynch, Founder, Magoun Square Neighborhood Association
"The SomerVision comprehensive plan and our Happiness Survey both confirm that residents and businesses are strongly committed to the idea of Somerville as a truly multimodal community," said Curtatone. "We want to make sure Somerville continues to maintain best practices and the intelligent use of technology in transportation in much the same way as we have in administration, finance and communications. I've been telling leaders at the state level that the Commonwealth needs a 21st Century transportation system to support a 21st Century economy - and I think we should be applying that principle at the local level, too. This group will help us do just that."