By Maria Walliser-Wejebe, GOPC Project Associate
Todd Litman, the executive director and founder of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute, was in town earlier in November as a part of CURA OSU series on Equity and Mobility. Mr. Litman’s presentation “Preparing for A Changing Mobility Future: Emerging Planning Issues,” was largely focused on the challenges and opportunities related to the integration of autonomous vehicles into cities. Key themes kept emerging throughout the presentation, first and foremost a hesitation to claim robo-cars as the only solution to congestion and accessibility problems. Secondly, Mr. Litman pointed out that planners and traffic engineers should not dismiss the importance of land use when it comes to accessibility and equity for a vibrant, connected, and healthy society.
GOPC had the opportunity to speak with Mr. Litman between his presentations, where we were able to bring up our recent publication on dedicated transportation funding. We were also able to discuss revitalization strategies, noting that there is an opportunity to support walkability in Ohio’s small cities and downtowns. Mr. Litman noted that there is a paradigm shift in the way that planners and practitioners approach transportation problems in the 21st century, moving towards a planning process which considers a comprehensive analysis of accessibility impacts, including density, land use, and pedestrian access.
Mr. Litman has worked on numerous studies that evaluate transportation costs, benefits and innovations. His latest reports document the challenges and opportunities surrounding multi-modal planning for rural areas, the effects of transportation costs on affordability, and innovative methods to leverage user-fees to pay for roadway maintenance.
See the full CURA presentation here. The Victoria Transport Policy Institute is an independent research organization dedicated to developing innovative solutions to transport problems. Visit their website to learn more.