In 2019, GPCOG staff partnered with Mobility Liaisons to develop and pilot the Community Transportation Leaders Program. The training and resulting peer-to-peer community is part of a larger effort by GPCOG and PACTS to advance the inclusion of underrepresented communities – including older adults, people with disabilities, and people of color. The program is focused on:
Supporting community members to gain the knowledge and tools needed for meaningful participation in transportation planning and decision-making.
Providing a peer-to-peer network to assist participants in acting on the goals they set.
Enabling decision-makers to hear directly from participants about the transportation needs and experiences of underrepresented communities.
Acting as a gateway for participation in transportation decision-making
In January 2020, the inaugural class of 23 engaged and energized Community Transportation Leaders presented to the PACTS Executive Committee about their top transportation concerns – including why they matter and their ideas for solutions. They distributed a booklet including transcripts of their presentations, as well as additional concerns and ideas from participants.
The program was made possible with funding through the Transit Planning 4 All initiative, sponsored by the Administration for Community Living and the Federal Transit Administration.
In 2022, GPCOG onboarded 12 Community Transportation Leaders to the second cohort of the program. In February and March 2022, the second cohort presented to the PACTS Executive Board and Regional Transportation Advisory Committee about their transportation concerns and their ideas for solutions.
In 2022, GPCOG staff developed the Community Transportation Leaders Program Handbook to support the ongoing implementation of the program in our region. We also hope it will help inspire the replication of the program in other communities.