The transportation beliefs we have, and the resulting policies, funding, and ultimately, infrastructure, affect all aspects of civic life, including human and climate health, housing costs and …
The transportation beliefs we have, and the resulting policies, funding, and ultimately, infrastructure, affect all aspects of civic life, including human and climate health, housing costs and availability, economic vitality, recreational opportunities, and community equity.
Jefferson County and the city of Port Townsend are at a crossroad. Transportation options, or lack of them, affect how and where we spend money, how much it costs to get back and forth to work, and ultimately, can increase or decrease equity gaps in our community.
The existential threat of climate change (transportation accounts for 66 percent of our community greenhouse gasses according to our most recent carbon inventory), our local housing crisis and rising economic equity issues are intertwined with how we access goods and services, participate in the social fabric of our community, and recreate. In previous columns in this paper, Transportation Lab has written about parking reform, infrastructure and street design, carbon reduction policies, and safe street enforcement. We believe that the best aspects of life in Jefferson County, and some of our most daunting problems can be improved by changing the policies and practices we adopt to move people around.
The Transportation Lab has planned a one-day conference, “Moving in the Right Direction,” to be held in Port Townsend on Friday, April 14. Participants will explore best practices in transportation and hear about research-based policies that make it easier and safer for people to walk, bike, and use transit. The day’s agenda includes expert presentations, a panel discussion, and inclusive workshop sessions. There will be opportunities for all participants to discuss short term and sustained changes that will improve the many community aspects affected by how we get around. Conference outcomes will be transportation-related policy ideas, generated by the community and tailored to Port Townsend and Jefferson County.
Our keynote speaker, Mike McGinn, is executive director of America Walks and a former Seattle mayor. He has been a long-time advocate for sustainable cities and environmental justice. Internationally recognized walkability expert Dan Burden will also present. He is the nation’s most recognized authority on walkability, bicycle and pedestrian programs, street corridor and intersection design, traffic flow & calming, road diets, and other city planning elements. Representatives of local public works and planning departments, Jefferson Transit, and the Port, among others, will lead a plenary panel and workshop sessions.
Participants will have opportunities to ask questions, discuss policies, and contribute their transportation ideas along with presenters and panelists.
Moving in the Right Direction is being organized by Local 20/20’s Transportation Lab in partnership with Jefferson Transit, the city of Port Townsend, Jefferson Healthcare, Jefferson County, the Port of Port Townsend, the Broken Spoke, and the Food Co-op. We welcome community members to participate.
The day’s event is free, but capacity is limited, so interested persons are encouraged to pre-register for this event.
For more information, contact Transportation Lab at email@example.com. To register, visit L2020.org/CONF2023
(David Thielk is a member of Local 20/20’s Transportation Lab and a lifelong utility cyclist and advocate for safe streets.)