Improving the connection to transportation choices
According to census data, the average driver in the Grand Traverse Region drives 23,000 miles per year. According to AAA, that’s at a cost of around $16,000 per year; money right out of the ol’ paycheck. For some perspective, that’s $5,000 more a year than the U.S. average and is a large part of the equation that puts the cost of housing + transportation at one of the highest percentages of income in the nation. In some places, well over 50%.
The Michigan Land Use Institute, a MyWHaT underwriter, has long been aware of this, reporting back in 2011 on families living on the edge (PDF) due to the need to drive to affordable housing and to find jobs.
MLUI is now developing a new program dubbed Local Motion to help connect people to tools and programs that connect people to more transportation choices, particularly for their commutes. Area choices for car-pooling, transit, and active transportation continue to be desired survey after survey (MLUI).
Local Motion will be rolled out further this summer and MyWHaT readers are specifically invited to a soft-launch summit on June 4th, during TART Trail’s Smart Commute week.
The summit will discuss the Local Motion initiative and the area businesses and partners already on the ground developing the program. It will also feature two guest speakers who’ve been part of successful transportation management programs outside of Traverse City.
- First, Mary Sell, of GetDowntown Ann Arbor (GDAA), will describe how A2 has moved people to get to work downtown via an improved transit and Complete Streets program.
- Second, Jeffrey Tumlin, principal at Nelson/Nygaard Consulting. Tumlin is a national figure who led transit-oriented development plans for more than 60 towns across North America and the author of the book “Sustainable Transportation Planning.”
The summit is from 3-6pm on June 4th at the Traverse City Opera House.
For planning purposes, RSVP’s are requested
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