“The public transportation industry has a little of everything. I like that we deal with technology, policy, finance and so many other areas — as a previous general manager that I used to work for called it ‘big things that move.’ In the end it is a service business with unique attributes.
“Unlike other modes of transportation, public transit has the ability to have substantial positive impacts on people’s lives. Investment in transit is directly correlated to economic development and benefits all members of society regardless of income level, disabilities or age.
“Fundamental shifts are occurring in transportation in the United States. Automobile vehicle miles traveled appear to be on the decline, even when economic factors are taken into account. Cities are back, with generational attitudes toward urban living changing, casing demand for urban transit to increase both for today’s services and future investments.
“At the same time nationally, airline mergers are leading to services increasingly focused on major hubs causing service at secondary markets to decline sharply and increase in cost. In order to be best positioned to take on the challenges and new demands being placed on the transportation system, substantial investment in public transportation networks is required. This shouldn’t be limited to just urban transit systems, but we need investment in quality intercity bus and rail as well.
“While many challenges remain, particularly defining the split of roles and responsibilities for transit funding between the local, regional, state and federal levels, we figured it out for the Interstate Highway System and we can figure it out again. My vision for transportation in the United States is cities with growing urban transit circulatory systems connected by effective intercity services.”