Transit Unplugged

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Hosted by Paul Comfort, Transit Unplugged shares the stories, challenges, and successes of the top transit professionals from around the world. Learn the inside story about public transit from the people who run it. Get the inside scoop on the latest public transit news. Transit Unplugged is brought to you by Trapeze Group.

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229 episodes

Mass Transit 40 Under 40 Part 1: Kayleigh Cleek and Sapna Shah

This week we have the first of two special Mass Transit 40 Under 40 shows. This week Paul Comfort and Mischa Wanek-Libman, Editor in Chief of Mass Transit Magazine talk with two of the honorees: Kayleigh Cleek, Transit Planning Manager, Greenville Transit Authority, and Sapna Shah, Superintendent, NY MTA talk about their careers, what they do at their agencies, and their visions for the future of transit. These are two extraordinary women who are already making their mark on the transit world. And next week we continue the series with Carlos Cruz-Casas, Chief Innovation Officer, Miami-Dade County Department of Transportation and Public Works, Roman Steichen, Director of Transit Services, Frederick County, and Sophia Maletz Franklyn, Director of Fare Revenue & Administrative Services at TriMet talking with Paul and Mischa. Also on the show we have: 🎙Transit infrastructure news 🎙Elea Carey's Messaging Minute 🎙Mike's Minute with Mike Bismeyer. Don't forget to sign up for the email newsletter so you're always in the loop. If you have a question, comment, or want to be a guest on the show, email us at info@transitunplugged.com

33m
Nov 30
Dave Reage -- Halifax Transit

This week we head out east to Halifax, Nova Scotia and hear from Dave Reage, Executive Director of Halifax Transit about his uniquely Canadian transit system. In conversation with Paul, Dave talks about the balance of being a center of government, the Atlantic home of the Canadian Navy, serving rural communities, and running a commuter ferry service across Halifax Harbor. As a trivia note, Halifax and Vancouver are the only transit systems in Canada that integrate ferries into the transit system. Dave has spent 15 years working at Halifax Transit and is overseeing its transition to zero emission transit as part of the HalifACT climate action plan. Halifax Transit is looking at both battery electric and hydrogen to power its buses so he can make sure his system is disaster ready. Next week on Transit Unplugged we have the first of two shows with recipients of Mass Transit's 40 Under 40 awards and Mass Transit Editor-in-Chief Mischa Wanak-Libman. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on the show, email us at info@transitunplugged.com. And don't forget to sign up for the newsletter to stay in the loop with everything going on with the show.

21m
Nov 23
Jarrett Walker -- Jarrett Walker and Assoc. Part 2

Welcome to part two of Paul's interview with Jarrett Walker of Jarret Walker & Associates https://jarrettwalker.com/. In this part of the interview, Paul and Jarrett talk about two of the hottest topics in public transport: equity and the demise of rush hour. Jarrett discusses the tension and balance between focusing on ridership versus coverage when looking at transit equality. As he talked about in part one, too far to one side or another leads to very different transit systems. He gives an example from his homebase of Portland, OR where there is a proposal to cut routes from some areas of the city to give disadvantaged areas of the city better coverage. Listen to his perspective on the topic. Then Jarrett goes into how if agencies are freed from needing to offer peak rush hour service--which is both inefficient and expensive--they can use those funds to offer better all-day coverage for routes in the system. This is something we've heard a lot about before, but Jarrett brings in the perspective of riders who think it's great to have rapid rush hour service, not realizing it's a cost to the whole system. You can also read more about Jarrett's work and check out his book at HumanTransit.org. Also on this week's show: 🎙In transit news of the week, Paul talks about the successful ballot measures in the U.S. that will support better transit in many cities and states. 🎙Elea Carey https://www.linkedin.com/in/eleacarey/--while fighting a cold--talks about how to make sure health and safety messaging gets across to your riders. Feel better Elea! 🎙Mike Bismeyer talks about World Kindness day 🎙Paul wraps up the show talking about the Intelligent Transport conference he attended in London, CoMotion in LA this week, and a few of the people who will be on upcoming shows and Transit Unplugged TV. Next week we have Dave Reage of Halifax Transit on the show and back to our usual programming. Until our end of the year specials, of course. If you have a question, comment, or want to be a guest on the show, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.   Show notes timeline. Enriched by Vizzy (00:00) Introduction and Transit News Transit news of the week. 80% of transit ballot measures passed in U.S. elections this week. Showing continued support for transit! (08:02) Interview with Jarrett Walker, Part 2 The interview with Jarrett Walker continues with discussions on equity and rush hour service https://vzyfm.co/3EAoUkl (18:52) Watch Transit Unplugged TV on YouTube! Part 2 of Paul's visit to Denver with a special chat with Phil Washington, CEO of the Denver Airport. https://vzyfm.co/3g6dtY8 (19:38) Messaging Minute with Elea Carey Elea has a cold, so she's thinking about how to keep health messages fresh for riders. https://vzyfm.co/3EhVMyh (21:23) Mike's Minute with Mike Bismeyer It was World Kindness Day this past Sunday. What did you do to be kind in the world? https://vzyfm.co/3tAj8Zy (23:00) Future of Public Transit Paul wraps things up with where he'll be speaking over the next several months. Chapters, images & show notes powered by vizzy.fm.

31m
Nov 16
Jarrett Walker -- Jarrett Walker and Assoc. Part 1

We continue our special kick-off to Season 6 with a special two-part Transit Unplugged News and Views with Jarrett Walker of Jarrett Walker & Associates talking about what it takes to rebuild and replan a transit network. Jarrett and his team are the minds behind the Houston Model transit system. The Houston Model brought focus on providing fast, efficient, frequent service with minimal transfers and away from ridership as the main driver, or indicator, of success. In part one we set the stage for why Houston needed this major change and the results. In part 2, Paul and Jarrett talk about the "why" of transit in the post-pandemic era. Make sure you tune into both parts of this great interview! Also in this episode: 🎙Paul gives you the transit news of the week including big changes at MBTA 🎙Elea Carey talks about when, and how, to talk to the media 🎙Mike Bismeyer reflects on APTATRANSform and CUTA conferences 🎙Paul wraps the show with an excerpt from his latest book and an update where he'll be speaking over the next couple months. Don't forget to subscribe to the newsletter on TransitUnplugged.com and if you have a question or comment you can email us at info@transitunplugged.com. Enriched by Vizzy (00:00) Transit News of the Week (07:09) Interview with Jarrett Walker Learn more about Jarrett and his work on his website. Including his book Human Transit https://vzyfm.co/3DPiE6z (21:59) Watch Transit Unplugged TV on YouTube Watch Transit Unplugged TV on YouTube! This week is part 2 of our two-part show from Denver, CO https://vzyfm.co/3NMmF0k (22:45) Elea Carey Marketing Minute Elea Carey is a marketing consultant who works with transit agencies. This week she talks about when to talk with the media. https://vzyfm.co/3EhVMyh (24:19) Mike's Minute with Mike Bismeyer Mike's Minute on leadership and mentorship. This week Mike talks about attending the recent APTA and CUTA conferences. https://vzyfm.co/3Eh06Oj (25:55) Future of Transit Paul talks about his upcoming speaking appearances and reads an excerpt from his book. https://vzyfm.co/3EfUsMd (29:19) Closing and next week Next week we continue with part 2 of Paul's interview with Jarrett Walker. Don't forget to visit TransitUnplugged.com and sign up for our weekly newsletter. https://vzyfm.co/3EbUSmJ Chapters, images & show notes powered by vizzy.fm.

30m
Nov 09
Rich Davey -- New York MTA

Welcome to a very special episode of Transit Unplugged In-Depth! This episode marks our fifth anniversary, the start of Season 6,  it also happens to be our 225th show! To celebrate these milestones we have an interview with Rich Davey, President New York City Transit, NY MTA https://new.mta.info/ as our guest. Paul interviewed Rich live from the APTATRANSform show in the Vontas booth in October after Paul's very successful book signing event. Rich and Paul dive into what it's like to run North America's largest public transit system. From post-pandemic changes to faring, to how Rich plans to make the entire MTA system better for everyone. Rich's plans for more accessible subway stations and restructuring bus routes across the city are just two ways Rich plans to keep the Big Apple moving all day, every day. Next week on Transit Unplugged News and Views we have part one of a special two-part series with transit consultant and planner Jarrett Walker. Paul and Jarrett start off talking about how public transit is changing and the Houston model Jarrett championed before the pandemic. In part two Paul and Jarrett talk about the new role and future of public transit in the post-pandemic era. We hope you join us and enjoy this special three-episode celebration of Season 6 of Transit Unplugged. If you have a question, comment, or want to be a guest on the show, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

30m
Nov 02
Jennifer DeBruhl -- Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation

With decades of transportation experience in Virginia, Jennifer DeBruhl knows the value of connecting people with reliable transit. From successful rural microtransit projects to Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) to invigorated North-South and East-West rail connections, Jennifer is creating the infrastructure for growth in the Commonwealth. In this week's Transit Unplugged In-Depth, Paul talks with Jennifer about her career journey, her plans across the state to connect Virginia to neighboring regions, and breaking records for passenger rail in the state. Jennifer also gives Paul an update on innovations in rural microtransit--so successful she's looking at expanding to other parts of Virginia--and her Transportation Navigator GTFS system for the entire state. Next week is a very special episode of Transit Unplugged! Next week we kick off Season 6--and the fifth anniversary and the 225th episode--with a very special guest interview recorded live from APTAtransform in Seattle. Want to know who it is? You'll have to listen to the end of the show to find out! If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on the show, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

26m
Oct 26
Charles Lattuca -- GoTriangle

The Research Triangle (Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill) in North Carolina is one of the fastest-growing areas in the U.S. Already at 2 million people, they are expecting another million people by 2050. So, how do you keep the area moving without relying on more cars and more roads? Better regional transit, of course! This week Paul chats with Charles Lattuca, President and CEO of GoTriangle https://gotriangle.org/, which works with partner agencies GoRaleigh, GoDurham, and Chapel Hill Transit to create a unified transit system to service the expected million people and 850,000 new jobs coming into the area. With eyes on commuter rail and Transit Oriented Development (TOD), Charles has a vision for making sure people can get to work and play, and not have to use a car to do it. Also on the show this week: __ __ Next week on Transit Unplugged we have Jennifer DeBruhl, Director of Rail and Public Transportation in Virginia. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on the show, email us at info@transitunplugged.com

32m
Oct 19
Vernon Everitt -- Transport for Greater Manchester

Greater Manchester is about the size of London with a population of roughly 3 million people. Vernon Everitt, Transport Commissioner for Greater Manchester, wants to help his region have safe, convenient, affordable, and green public transport options. Transport for Greater Manchester already has one of the largest tram networks in Europe and now they are in the process of following the Transport for London model of central oversight over buses under a franchise model. All with the goal of getting more people out of cars and use buses, scooters, bikes, and walking to get around the region. Join Vernon and Paul as they talk about the franchise model, how safety is crucial to ridership, Vernon's custom guitar, and the future of green transport in Manchester. This recent article in Intelligent Transport talks about the new electric buses coming to the Bee Network and all of TfGM's electrification plans. Next week on Transit Unplugged we head to North Carolina as Paul chats with Charles Lattuca of GoTriangle. And this Friday a new episode of Transit Unplugged TV drops coming from Denver! Make sure you subscribe so you know the moment it's live. If you have a question about the show, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

31m
Oct 12
Lisa Walton -- SFMTA

Lisa Walton is the CTO of SFMTA, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (aka Muni), and is responsible for one of the largest and most complex transit regions in North America. She needs to interact with over 20 different agencies and services around the Bay Area, not to mention all the people within the city and county of San Francisco. And the biggest challenges are seamless travel and getting the right information to people at the right time. One of Lisa's biggest projects recently has been a total overhaul of Muni's customer information system. Lisa and her team replaced a 20-year-old plus system--a system you couldn't even get parts for anymore--with a state-of-the-art system that gives riders all the information they need to get where they are going. Her system goes well beyond "the next bus will be here in 5 minutes" information to capacity information and soon ways to adjust your trip based on real-time conditions. Listen to Lisa's interview with Paul and learn all about that and more about the technology that runs Muni. Also on Transit Unplugged News and Views this week: __ __ Next week on Transit Unplugged In-Depth we have Vernon Everitt, Transit Commissioner for the City of Manchester in the UK. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on the show, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

35m
Oct 05
Michelle Bouchard -- Caltrain

Stretching from San Francisco to Gilroy (the garlic capital of the U.S.), Caltrain https://www.caltrain.com/ follows the spine of the Bay Area peninsula and straight through Silicon Valley. Having been around since the 1860s, Silicon Valley  around Caltrain. And unlike most commuter rail lines, Caltrain doesn't serve a single city center with traffic going one way in the morning and back in the afternoon; people travel up and down the peninsula in  getting to work. This is, as Michelle says, a blessing and a curse. She needs to plan for a constant flow of people north and south, no matter what time of day. The pandemic has had its challenges for Caltrain, but Michelle and her team have adapted service throughout the day, nights, and weekends. Caltrain is coming back, but like all commuter rail lines, no one is quite sure what that's going to look like long term. One thing is for sure--electric trains! The first four trainsets have arrived ahead of full revenue service in 2024 and the trains look pretty amazing. Learn more in this week's Transit Unplugged In-Depth. Next week on Transit Unplugged News and Views Paul's guest will be Lisa Walton, CTO of SFMTA. Don't forget to sign up for the newsletter https://www.transitunplugged.com and if you have a question or comment, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

34m
Sep 28
Suhair Al Khatib -- Washington Metro Rail Safety Commission

Suhair Al Khatib knows safety. After years at Baltimore MTA, he's now a Commissioner for Maryland on the Washington Metro Rail Safety Commission and his job is simple. Keep passengers safe. Safety isn't just about ticking boxes or enforcing rules, it's a mindset. It's knowing that putting safety first sometimes means disrupting service. Sometimes it means inconveniencing the traveling public. Because if you don't make those tough calls and let things slide, bad things can happen. Join Paul and Suhair in talking about safety including Suhair's plans that won awards and are a model for how to make repairs with the least amount of disruption possible.  Also in this episode: __ __ Tune in and enjoy. Next week we have Michelle Bouchard Acting Executive Director of CalTrain to talk about the seventh largest commuter rail line in the U.S. Don't forget to sign up for the newsletter https://www.transitunplugged.com/ and if you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

31m
Sep 21
Paul Comfort, Bacarra Mauldin, and Alex Wiggins on Diversity and Inclusion

Our guest host Julie Gates, award-winning broadcaster and Director of Marketing at Trapeze interviews Paul about his upcoming book . They talk about why he wrote it, what it's about, what you'll learn from it, and most importantly what it means to Paul. We also hear from Bacarra Mauldin of MARTA reading excerpts from her forward to the book and Alex Wiggins of NORTA on the  things he's doing for diversity and inclusion in New Orleans. Paul's book will be unveiled on October 10th in the Vontas booth at APTA TRANSform. At APTA Paul will be giving away and signing copies of the book. Several of the contributors to the book will also be on hand to sign your copy and chat. You'll be able to buy the book shortly thereafter from all the places you get books. Next week Paul chats with Suhair Al Khatib from Metro Rail in Washington D.C. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

29m
Sep 14
Steve Young -- VIA Metropolitan Transit

We've all stood at a stop wondering when the next bus will arrive. And a lot of us have wondered why a bus didn't go where we thought it would because of a detour or closure. These are not good feelings as a rider. Steve Young, VP of Technology and Innovation at VIA Metropolitan Transit https://www.viainfo.net/ in San Antonio, TX knows a thing or two about data and customers. He and his team have pushed the limits of technology to give his customers the absolutely latest information about routes and buses. VIA riders always know where a bus is, and route changes are updated every day so your planned trips go as planned. It's these little things that have given VIA an off the charts NPS (Net Promoter Score) rating from its customers. Hear how Steve dug into the technology and data so his team could deliver these amazing results. Also this week on Transit Unplugged News and Views: __ __ And don't forget this Friday we'll have a special episode of Transit Unplugged TV https://www.youtube.com/c/TransitUnpluggedTV from APTA Tech all about ... transit technology! Next week on Transit Unplugged In-Depth we have Vernon Everitt, Transport Commissioner for Manchester U.K.  If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

33m
Sep 07
David Scorey - CEO Keolis North America

David Scorey leads Keolis North America working with agencies across the U.S. and Canada. From starting in the trenches in the UK's rail sector to managing the MBTA commuter rail contract, and now CEO of Keolis North America, David keeps his sights on what's important to agencies and riders. David looks at transit holistically, like how he views accessibility: "When I talk about accessibility, many people think of step-free access, you know, elevators and things like that. And of course, that's an important part of it, but accessibility is more than that to me; it's about what we can do to take away the mystique of every journey and make it again, as easy as possible for people to travel and encourage that travel." David leverages Keolis worldwide to both learn from other regions, but also help other regions learn from North American examples too. The Keolis KPI room is a key part of keeping sight of what's important to riders--safe, efficient journeys--and agencies--On Time Performance, budgets, and improving the transit system overall. The KPI room gives everyone at Keolis, regardless of where in the world they work, a north star for what they are working on. Next week on Transit Unplugged News and Views, Paul is talking with Steve Young, Chief Innovation Officer at VIA in San Antonio, and technology and innovation at his agency and beyond. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

27m
Aug 31
Steve Martingano -- Denver RTD Transit Police

Six years ago Steve Martingano challenged conventions with his innovative policing strategy at Denver RTD by pairing officers with mental health workers. He saw a lot of police interactions weren't  issues, but  issues. People needed help. They needed medical care. They needed support. They needed housing. Steve talks with Paul about how after six years he's expanding his efforts beyond medical and mental health support to housing and social service access. Steve talks about changing mindsets about the causes and solutions of issues on transit and how it's positively affected the region. Learn how it started, where it is today, and how he continues to help those most vulnerable in his community. We also hear in the news segment about the billions of dollars of funding awarded for low and no emissions plus other infrastructure investments.  Elea Carey talks about how to measure the effectiveness of your communications plans and Mike Bismeyer checks in on great work helping others in Orlando, FL. Next week Paul is talking with David Scorey of Keolis about contracting in public transit. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email info@transitunplugged.

23m
Aug 24
Monica Backmon -- Northern Virginia Transportation Authority

Monica Backmon, CEO of the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority, has a unique job in the transit world. Her agency plans and funds transportation projects as small as traffic calming and as big as Bus Rapid Transit. And she does it across cities, towns, and counties in Northern Virginia. While often compared to a Municipal Planning Organization, NVTA has no close comparators in the United States. Her responsibility is broad and so is her mandate to help move people across her region. From supporting a town of 123 people to cities of millions with planning and funding, Monica juggles the needs of a diverse set of people in one of the fastest growing regions of the U.S. Her extraordinary vision gives helps with diverse needs and incomes. Those for whom transit is a necessity and those who could use something else. Her goal is to improve transit and the region for a brighter, greener future through better, smarter technology. If you have a comment, question, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email info@transitunplugged.com.

32m
Aug 17
April Rai CEO COMTO

Paul met April Rai, CEO of COMTO https://comtonational.org/ (Conference of Minority Transportation Officials) at the recent COMTO conference in Miami. He sat down with April to talk about the origins of COMTO, the challenges transit is facing today, and her vision for how we'll solve them. On Transit Unplugged News and Views this week we also have: __ __ Next week on Transit Unplugged In-Depth our guest will be Monica Backmon, CEO of the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority. We'd like to thank all our listeners who nominated us for a Podcast Award; we made the cut! Transit Unplugged is in the voting round and we'll hear the results in September. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com; and don't forget to sign up for our newsletter on our website!

27m
Aug 10
Henry Li -- SacRT

This week Paul talks with a guest we've wanted to get on the show for a long, long time. When Henry Li arrived in Sacramento, the agency needed to restore both public trust in the system and financial stability for the agency. In his 7 year tenure so far he's launched the first microtransit pilot in the U.S., made the system free for kids in grades K-12, and ensured there was pay equity across his agency. His efforts have clearly paid off, Henry was named APTA CEO of the year in 2019 and SacRT was named APTA agency of the year in 2021. In his career that has taken him from Atlanta to Jacksonville and now Sacramento, Henry has shown he knows how to create a transit system that lifts his entire community up and provides opportunities for all. When he bought new light rail cars for his system, they were built at the Siemens plant in Sacramento, giving his region better transit and an economic boost. While SacRT is still bouncing back from the pandemic, his microtransit solution continues to be successful and filling gaps in his 100 square mile service area. Listen to this conversation and learn about the microtransit solution, light rail, and the new payment systems Henry has brought to his agency. Learn more about SacRT on their website. Next week on Transit Unplugged News and View, April Rei, CEO of COMTO will be joining Paul talking about the work she does supporting minorities in transit leadership. Don't forget to subscribe to the newsletter to get all the latest about Transit Unplugged. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

31m
Aug 03
Alva Carrasco and Herold Humphrey -- Latinos In Transit

Alva Carrasco and Herold Humphrey are on a mission. A mission to increase the visibility, opportunities, and voice of Latinos in public transit. And not just when talking about issues, but more importantly in leadership positions to help the communities they serve. Alva and Herold talk with Paul about the origins of Latinos In Transit https://www.latinosintransit.org/ from a casual group of people working in the same industry to an organized force to encourage and support Latinos in their careers. From advocacy and mentorship to scholarships and networking, Alva Carrasco, President, and Herold Humphrey, Vice President, have a vision to ensure Latinos have a seat at the decision-making table, the boardroom, and C-suite. Listen to their story on this episode of Transit Unplugged News and Views. Also on the show: __ __ Next week we have Henry Li, CEO of the Sacramento Regional Transit District on the show. It's not too late to nominate Transit Unplugged at the Podcast Awards https://www.podcastawards.com/ in the Government and Organizations category. Nominations close July 30! If have a question, comment, or be a guest on Transit Unplugged email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

36m
Jul 27
Matt Tucker North County Transit District

Matt Tucker, Executive Director and CEO of the North County Transit District covers a huge geographic area north of San Diego. From buses to rail to a new hybrid light rail, Matt has served his region for over a decade with big plans for the future. Matt and Paul talk about all the different transportation modes, Matt's plans for going green with battery electric and hydrogen, and hints at his plans for the future of the agency. One of the longest-serving CEOs in public transit, Matt has a unique perspective on public transit from work on both coasts with projects large and small. In his 14 years as Executive Director and CEO of North County Transit District, Matt has  about the past, current, and future challenges for public transit in his region and beyond. Next week Paul is chatting with April Rei, CEO of COMTO, one of two great conversations coming from the recent COMTO Conference.

28m
Jul 20
Wiebe Wakker Sustainable Adventurer from Plug Me In

This week Paul talks with Wiebe Wakker, sustainable adventurer about his three-year trip from the Netherlands to Australia in an EV--with no money--and then how he traveled from the Netherlands to Dubai (most) on public transport to give a keynote speech at UITP MENA earlier this year. It's a fascinating story of someone who admits wasn't really into sustainability when he started but has now become a champion for it. Learn more about Wiebe on: __ __ Also on the show the latest public transit news, Elea Carey's Messaging Minute, Mike's Minute with Mike Bismeyer, and Paul's look at the future of transit. Next week on the show we have Matt Tucker, Executive Director and CEO of the North County Transit District talking about his multi-modal system and how they are adapting to changing ridership. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged email us at info@transitunplugged.com. Plus...please take a moment to nominate us in the Government and Organizations category in the Podcast Awards. Nominating us not only gets us to the voting round, but also factors into who wins the award!

31m
Jul 13
Charlotte Shaw Birmingham Jefferson County Transit Authority

Charlotte Shaw, CEO of Birmingham Jefferson County Transit Authority, has deep experience in getting things done. From project and program management to capital planning, Charlotte is the person who makes a transit vision a reality. After years at MARTA, she came to Birmingham to manage building a bus rapid transit (BRT) for the city before it would be handed over to BJCTA. But as she tells Paul, the transit authority thought she'd be just the right person to bring BJCTA into a new era of transit. Listen to Charlotte tell Paul how she got into transit and her vision for creating a transit system that does more than just get people places. Next week on Transit Unplugged News and Views, Paul is talking with Wiebe Wakker who drove an electric car from the Netherlands to New Zealand to show how efficient and reliable EVs are. It's podcast award season! Please help Transit Unplugged win a People's Choice podcast award by nominating us in the "Government and Organizations" category. Visit PodcastAwards.com to nominate us to make it to the voting round.  Don't forget to sign up for our newsletter on the website and if you'd like to ask a question or be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

31m
Jul 06
Sam Morrissey -- Urban Movement Labs

This week Paul talks with Sam Morrissey from Urban Movement Labs in LA about their mandate to help the city navigate the changing face of transportation. When scooters came to the city, there were issues with where to ride them--not on the sidewalks, but maybe not the road either--and how to return them. As new transportation technologies emerge, Urban Movement Labs serves as a trusted partner working with the city  private companies to deploy new technologies the right way. Also on the show: __ __ Next week on the show we have Charlotte Shaw, CEO of the Birmingham - Jefferson County Transit Authority as our guest on Transit Unplugged In Depth. Don't forget to sign up for the Transit Unplugged newsletter on the website to always be in the know about what's happening with the show. If you have a question, comment, or you'd like to be a guest on the show, email info@transitunplugged.com.

32m
Jun 29
Sam Snead -- Anne Arundel County Department of Transportation

Sam Snead is looking towards the future of transportation in Anne Arundel County, MD. From solar-lit bus stops to websites to full system maps, Sam sees up-to-date technology as crucial to success in his region. Paul talks with Sam about his career journey and then gets into Sam's ambitious Move Anne Arundel transit master plan looking forward to create sustainable, accessible, and green transit solutions for the county. Creating a robust transit system in smaller and more spread-out areas is always a challenge, but Sam's plans to tap into local, regional, and micro transit solutions have created a solid foundation for his county to build on. Don't forget to subscribe to the Transit Unplugged newsletter to be first to know about new shows and announcements about the podcast and TUTV! If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com

26m
Jun 22
Tom Wright -- Regional Plan Association

This week on Transit Unplugged News & Views, Paul is talking with Tom Wright of the Regional Plan Association (RPA) https://rpa.org/ about planning for the future in the New York Metropolitan area (New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut). Over its 100 year history, RPA has put a stake in the ground for what needs to be done to build and sustain the region. As Tom says, all of their recommendations are implemented--eventually. Tom talks about the RPA vision for what's needed in the region to grow in the post-pandemic era and how cities, states, and the U.S. federal government need to look at and coordinate their efforts. The region is already behind the eight ball to catch up, it will take a lot of work to put things on track. Also on this week's show: __ __ If you want to stay in touch make sure you sign up for email updates on the website. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com

25m
Jun 15
Melinda Metzger -- Pace Suburban Bus

Melinda Metzger is the first female Executive Director for Pace Suburban Bus, one of the largest bus and paratransit systems in the United States covering 3,500 square miles and serving 272 communities.  On this week's Transit Unplugged In Depth, Melinda and Paul talk about how the great resignation has impacted public transit and how local partnerships are combating those effects. To get more bus operators at Pace, they are covering the cost of tuition at a local community college to help people get their Commercial Drivers License (CDL) and be ready to start training at Pace to become full bus operators. Get a glimpse of what the future of electrification looks like in the Chicago area as Pace gears up to reach zero emissions by 2040. You'll also hear about a brand new Pace bus facility opened by Secretary Buttigieg, and what our next generation of riders is prioritizing in their daily commutes. Catch us next week to hear Tom Wright, president and CEO of RPA regional planning association. RPA focuses on improving the prosperity, sustainability, and livability of people in the New York Metropolitan Area. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

25m
Jun 08
Jen Shepherd -- GM Uber Transit

Jen Shepherd is passionate about public transit. As GM of Uber Transit she is responsible for helping agencies move more people, more flexibly, and more cost-effectively. In her chat with Paul, Jen talks about how Uber provides agencies tools to balance demand and resources with on-demand capacity when it wouldn't make sense to have an agency-owned vehicle on the route. One of the most exciting ways Uber is helping transit agencies is adding flexible paratransit capacity with the recently announced partnership with Trapeze, integrating Trapeze TripBroker with Uber Transit. Listen to the whole episode to hear how it works for riders and agencies. Also in this episode: __ __ Next week Melinda Metzger Executive Director of PACE Suburban Bus joins Paul for Transit Unplugged In-Depth. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

26m
Jun 01
Wayne Rogers -- Northeast Maglev

Northeast Maglev https://northeastmaglev.com/ has a vision for bringing fast--really, really fast--rail service to the Northeast Corridor (Boston to Washington D.C.). This week Paul talks with Wayne Rogers, Chairman and CEO of the Baltimore Washington Rapid Rail, LLC, and Northeast Maglev, LLC, about his vision for what maglev trains could do for the region. Faster than steel wheel-based trains, maglev trains use superconducting magnets to propel trains along at up to 311 miles an hour. Already running in Japan, where the service is wildly successful, bringing this level of train service would mean being able to get from New York City to Washington D.C. in an hour. * Many of the trips people take today by car or plane could be eliminated if the Northeast Corridor gets maglev up and running. Maglev would reduce congestion, pollution, and pressure on the highway system as the region grows. * The U.S. has been looking at maglev rail for decades and Northeast Maglev started working on this project ten years ago. The environmental reviews are almost complete and they are looking to get the project up and running soon. *   * In the episode, you'll hear about the project, the technology, and what we've learned from the successful maglev train in Japan. Next week on Transit Unplugged News and Views, we'll have Jen Shepard, GM of Uber Transit on the show talking about microtransit and paratransit options. If you have a comment, question, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us at info@transitunplugged.com.

31m
May 25
Christiaan Blake, Managing Dir, Dept of Access Services, WMATA

Christiaan Blake is responsible for the  of offering paratransit services that balance accommodation and sustainability. Christiaan needs to serve the most people he can with paratransit, while also creating accessible fixed-route transit that is open to all. One of the tricks up Christiaan's sleeve is an innovative program where is if paratransit riders opt into using a taxi or service like Uber for their ride, their ride could be randomly chosen to be free. This has proven to be very popular and lets Christiaan accomodate things like last-minute trips, staying longer, or leaving earlier than planned. This is a big job and Christiaan takes his role and place in transit seriously. He sees paratransit as a crucial safety net for people who can't be served with even WMATA's accessible fixed route and subway system. Also on the show, Elea Carey talks about sharing employee stories and Mike Bismeyer challenges us to do something good in the cities we visit while traveling for work. All this on this week's Transit Unplugged News and Views. Sit back and listen in.

30m
May 18
Eulois Cleckley Miami-Dade Department of Transportation and Public Works

This week Paul is talking with Eulois Cleckley, Director and CEO of the Miami-Dade County Department of Transportation and Public Works. Eulois manages everything from buses, trains, microtransit, and even exploring urban air mobility--yes, flying cars--along with all the roads and bridges in his county. Eulois is undertaking a massive update of the county's  intersections with smart signaling technology to improve traffic flow and reduce congestion in one of the nation's most car-centric areas. And this also happens to be our 200th episode of Transit Uplugged! Here's to another 200! Next week on Transit Unplugged News and Views, Christiaan Blake of WMATA talks about access to transit and mobility. If you have a question, comment, or would like to be a guest on Transit Unplugged, email us anytime at info@transitunplugged.com.

23m
May 11