This week, U.S. Reps. Mark Takano (D-California), Jesús “Chuy” García (D-Illinois), and Ayanna Pressley (D-Massachusetts) launched the Future of Transportation Caucus, which will be dedicated to creating a vision for the future of the nation's transportation system that emphasizes equity, access, and sustainability.
The caucus formally launched yesterday morning and will feature a standing series of briefings and forums to generate awareness and policy discussions including sustainability, safety, and improved connectivity for all communities.
“Neighborhoods and cities are rapidly evolving across our country, yet our approaches to the biggest challenges in transportation have failed to keep up with modern demands," Congressman Takano said in a statement. "We need to reimagine our approaches and solutions to create a transportation system that focuses on equity, accessibility, and sustainability." Takano said the caucus is designed to refocus Congress’ discussions on transportation issues that go beyond funding to improve the understanding of the profound impact that transportation infrastructure and planning can have on communities, access to critical jobs and services, and the environment.
“For too long, conversations about transportation and infrastructure have focused too much on funding and not enough on policy," Congressman García said in a statement. "We have decades-old policies that inadequately address climate change and the shifting realities of Americans’ commute to and from home, work, and school." García emphasized the need to address the way current transportation systems leave out communities of color, contribute to congestion and disrepair, and fail to respond to disruptive technologies and the climate crisis.
Congresswoman Pressley echoed some of García's sentiments by pointing out how disparities in the transportation system affects costs and commute times for low-income communities, and addressed the need for lowered carbon emissions in the system. “With our current transportation infrastructure entrenched as one of the largest sources of carbon emissions, it is critical that we support multimodal transportation options like cycling, rapid speed transit, and walking," she said in a statement. She added that the caucus will advance transportation policies that prioritize community connectivity and access to critical services.
Other members of the caucus include Reps. Eleanor Holmes Norton, Jim McGovern, Earl Blumenauer, Sharice Davids, Hank Johnson, Steve Cohen, Seth Moulton, Ann Kirkpatrick, Jared Huffman, Joe Morelle, Alan Lowenthal, André Carson, Donna Shalala, Rashida Tlaib, Lloyd Doggett, and Raul Grijalva.
SOURCE: Offices of Reps. Takano, García, and Pressley