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Forward Motion, March 2013

Join these firms in sponsoring Mobility 21’s 2013 Southern California Transportation Summit.

2013 Mobility 21 Summit Sponsorships Now Open

Sponsorships for the 12th annual Southern California Transportation Summit are now open to the general public! This year’s Summit, which will focus on vital connections between transportation, energy, water, health and education, promises a diverse group of infrastructure stakeholders, engaging breakout sessions and high-profile keynote speakers. The Summit will take place on Tuesday, Oct. 29 at the JW Marriott at L.A. Live in downtown Los Angeles.

2013 Summit sponsors will experience:

  • Access to public and private sector transportation decision-makers
  • Visibility at California’s largest one-day transportation Summit and Expo
  • Pre-event publicity to thousands of transportation sector professionals
  • Networking with business partners, clients, elected leaders and speakers
  • Value for your investment with highly competitive sponsorship rates

Don’t let your business miss out on this sponsorship opportunity! Click here to view the sponsorship packages. E-mail Marnie O’Brien Primmer for more details or call 949.288.6884.


In Memoriam:
Remembering Bimla Rhinehart

On March 5, the California transportation industry lost a tremendous leader.

“Bimla’s legacy lives on through the hundreds of lives she touched throughout her career as a mentor, leader and true friend,” said Anne Mayer, Executive Director of the Riverside County Transportation Commission and Mobility 21 Chair. “Her memory will stay in our hearts forever.”

Bimla Rhinehart spent nearly her entire career dedicated to improving transportation. She worked for the California Department of Transportation for 23 years and served as the California Transportation Commission (CTC) Executive Director since 2009, leading the commission’s delivery of transportation projects and programs throughout the state. She was an active board member of the California Transportation Foundation and the Sacramento chapter of Women’s Transportation Seminar, mentoring transportation professionals and serving as a role model for students.

A memorial scholarship fund will be established in her honor. Visit the CTC website for updates.


Members of Mobility 21 meet with U.S. Department of Transportation leaders during the group’s annual advocacy trip to Washington, D.C.Click here to view photos from the trip.

Mobility 21 Pushes Federal Government
to Invest in Transportation

During Mobility 21’s annual Washington, D.C. advocacy trip this month, members of Mobility 21 met with Congressional offices and members of the U.S. Department of Transportation to fight for increased investment in transportation.

At the top of Mobility 21’s wish list this year was the creation of a separate and dedicated Freight Trust Fund to enhance our nation’s goods movement system.

“It’s clear that our message for increased investment in goods movement is being heard in the halls of Congress, but the challenge will be to build consensus on the future of transportation funding,” said Paul Granillo, President & CEO of the Inland Empire Economic Partnership and Mobility 21 Vice Chair. “Mobility 21 is looking forward to joining the discussion on the creation of a national freight funding program.”

Other key policy asks included:

  • Increased overall investment for all modes of transportation to meet maintenance and capacity needs;
  • Support for the use of innovative financing tools, including America Fast Forward bonds;
  • Support for alternative project delivery methods, including public-private partnerships and design-build;
  • Incentives for red tape-reduction efforts at all levels of project approvals; and
  • Greater flexibility and local hiring preferences when projects are substantially funded locally.

“We’re urging Congress to provide local hiring preferences for projects substantially funded through local sales tax measures,” said Art Leahy, CEO of the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority and Mobility 21 Board Member. “Currently, if there is a small portion of federal funding for a project, we can’t have a local hiring program. If our region is paying the majority of project costs and enduring construction delays, we should be able to put Southern Californians to work.”

Click here to view fact sheets shared with members of Congress, including Reps. Earl Blumenauer, Ken Calvert, Peter DeFazio, John Duncan, Alan Lowenthal, Gary Miller, Nick Rahall, Linda Sánchez and Juan Vargas.

“It was an honor to be a part of this special team advocating for the most important transportation issues for Southern California,” said Tom Kim, HDR Senior Vice President. “It was great to witness our top leaders coming together with a united voice and a common goal.”

The Mobility 21 advocacy trip ended with a visit at the DOT to meet with Deputy Secretary John Porcari, Federal Railroad Deputy Adminstrator Karen Hedlund, DOT Associate Administrator David Kim, Federal Maritime Administrator David Matsuda, Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez and Federal Transit Administrator Peter Rogoff.

“I want to thank Mobility 21 for working as a region in a modal agnostic way,” said Porcari. “When you speak with one voice, we are listening.”

As a follow-up to the advocacy trip, Mobility 21 will continue to educate Congress, including freshman members, on Southern California’s transportation issues through in-district legislative briefings, meetings in Washington, D.C. and direct mail outreach.


Southern California’s Newest Voice
for Goods Movement Investment

This month we turn our attention to Congresswoman Janice Hahn, a new Southern California representative serving on the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee. Read our interview with Congresswoman Hahn to learn about the important work she and her colleagues are doing to improve goods movement infrastructure.

M21: What steps have you taken to advocate for the importance of developing a comprehensive, national freight strategy that includes funding for goods movement projects? 

JH: The modern economy absolutely requires a modern goods movement system. For too long, inattention to critical bottlenecks in our national goods movement network has hamstrung our global competitiveness and made it harder to do business at home. That’s one of the reasons I founded the Congressional PORTS Caucus last year, to highlight the importance of our ports in the goods movement network. When the comprehensive surface transportation bill was being negotiated by Congress, I went to the floor of the House to urge my colleagues to include a national freight strategy, emphasizing projects vital to the flow of goods in the nation. I’ve also used the PORTS caucus to connect my colleagues with top administration officials like Transportation Secretary LaHood and Vice Admiral Peter Neffenger to discuss the urgent need for goods movement funding.

M21: How do you plan to ensure that the transportation needs and priorities of Southern California remain at the forefront of discussions on the nation’s infrastructure?

JH: Strengthening Southern California’s transportation system isn’t just important for those of us who live there, it is important for the nation. When over 40 percent of the goods coming into the U.S. flow through the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, the inefficiencies in our backyard are felt across the nation. More grade crossings in Southern California doesn’t just help local traffic and air quality, it helps goods arrive where they are needed quicker and more efficiently. As a member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, I am going to make sure my colleagues know that investing in Southern California is an investment in a critical national bottleneck. What’s good for SoCal is good for the country.

M21: What has the PORTS Caucus identified as its top priorities?

JH: The PORTS Caucus has many priorities including goods movement. We are also working on the Harbor Maintenance Trust fund to ensure that ports have the resources that they need. For years, the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund has built a multi-billion dollar surplus — even as so many ports across the nation have suffered from lack of investment. It is critical that Congress works to better utilize these vital funds.

M21: What do you think has been your most notable accomplishment during your time so far in Congress?

JH: My most noticeable accomplishment in less than two years is making PORTS part of the national dialogue. When I came to Congress in July 2011, no one was talking about the importance of PORTS. They weren’t talking about how ports impact our security, or our environment, or our economy and jobs. So I started the bi-partisan Congressional PORTS Caucus with my friend, Republican Ted Poe of Texas, because it was clear to me that we needed to educate our colleagues in Congress about how strong ports make for a strong America. Today, the PORTS Caucus is 87 members strong, Democrats and Republicans, Congressmen with ports in their districts, and some without a port for hundreds of miles. This year, during the State of the Union, the President discussed the need to modernize our ports. I agree with the President’s proposal to build collaborative partnerships that attract capital to help modernize ports, making goods move more efficiently. As a freshman, I had a port security pass the House Floor — no small accomplishment.

M21: What do you hope to accomplish in 2013?

JH: In 2013, I want to build on the success of the caucus and ensure that ports are on the forefront of our economic policies. As we begin to prepare to reauthorize MAP-21, I want the legislation to be stronger on freight policy.


The ASCE Report Card is Out:
Transportation in California Graded C-

Every four years, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) issues the Infrastructure Report Card which evaluates conditions and investment needs for major sectors of U.S. infrastructure — including roads, bridges, drinking water systems, ports, mass transit and the electric grid.

“America’s overall infrastructure GPA came in at a staggering D+ and transportation in California was graded a C-, signaling that it’s time for people to speak up to their elected leaders that now is the time to invest in infrastructure,” said Marnie O’Brien Primmer, Executive Director of Mobility 21.

ASCE outlines simple ways for members of the public to get involved and take action to turn our infrastructure grades around. Whether you have one minute, five minutes or if your entire career is dedicated to transportation, there is something for everyone to do.

This year’s report card is available online and as a digital app that includes interactive maps and other engaging tools. Click here to visit the report card website to learn how to download smartphone and tablet apps.


Metro’s bicycle safety campaign includes an interactive website featuring safety tips for riders.

Metro Launches Campaign to
Increase Bicycle Traffic Safety

Metro is launching a bold new campaign to increase bicycle safety in Los Angeles County. The campaign, called “Every Lane is a Bike Lane … Bicyclists may need a full lane; Please share the road” will include messages on the back of 75 Metro buses, 135 billboards and spots on 21 local radio stations throughout the region. The campaign will run between March and May, leading up to Bike Week L.A. May 13-17.

With bicycling increasing in popularity as a viable transportation mode, more biking events like CicLAvia and more new bikeways being installed on a regular basis, Metro’s extensive campaign will help raise motorist awareness that cyclists have equal rights and responsibilities to the road per the California Vehicle Code.

“The breakneck pace of bikeway construction demonstrates that Los Angeles is riding fast on its way to becoming a truly bike-friendly city,” said L.A. City Mayor Antonio Villariagosa. “As more cyclists take to our streets we need to ensure that safety and awareness are of utmost importance as our riders share the road.”

The California Vehicle Code Section 21200 stipulates that bicycle riders may use any lane in the street since they have the same rights and must follow the same laws as car drivers. Bicyclists may need the full lane to safely navigate specific road and traffic conditions. In addition, the state vehicle code sets out several situations in which bicyclists are specifically permitted to leave their usual position on the far right of the street:

To avoid obstacles and unsafe conditions (including the door zone along parallel-parked vehicles)

  • To pass another bicyclist, car or bus
  • To prepare for a left turn
  • To avoid an area where right turns are made
  • When traveling as fast or faster than other traffic at that time and place
  • When the lane is too narrow to share with a vehicle

It is becoming increasingly important for motorists and cyclists to safely co-exist on the region’s roadways. In L.A. County, 19 percent of all trips are made by walking and biking, but bicyclists and pedestrians make up 39 percent of roadway fatalities.

In the Southern California region, nearly four percent of all traffic-related fatalities involved cyclists, and 4.3 percent of all traffic-related injuries involved cyclists.

“At the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, we know that education is needed for both drivers and bicyclists on how to properly share the road,” said Jennifer Klausner, LACBC’s Executive Director. “We’re working hard to educate bicyclists to ride with traffic, use lights at night and other ways to avoid the most common types of collisions. We’re excited to see Metro help with the other half of the equation by making sure drivers know to expect bicyclists on any street and to pass only when it’s safe. Thanks, Metro, for so clearly saying that every lane is a bike lane!”

As part of its overall bicycle safety campaign, Metro also plans to begin traffic skills courses for bicyclists to help ensure cyclists know their responsibilities for riding safely on local streets. Cyclists interested in participating in these future classes should e-mail Metro’s Bicycle Program at bikeinfo@metro.net.

Additionally, Metro is planning to sponsor 20 bike rides to further promote safe cycling in Los Angeles County.

“We’re thrilled at C.I.C.L.E. about Metro’s ‘Every Lane is a Bike Lane’ campaign,” said Dan Dabek, Executive Director of C.I.C.L.E. “This attention-grabbing campaign will be significant in improving motorist and bicyclist relations and creating safer streets for all users. When about 60 percent of trips in Los Angeles County are less than five miles, making our roads more friendly to bicyclists is the fastest and most cost-effective way to reduce traffic, improve air quality, and make Los Angeles County a more enjoyable place to live.”

This bicycle safety campaign is made possible by Metro’s Bicycle Program, which has worked closely with the bicycle community on numerous initiatives related to bicycling and transit. Since 1993, Metro has funded more than $100 million in bicycle improvement projects in the county.

For more information about Metro’s Bicycle Program, please visit metro.net/bikes.


State Route 91 Corridor Improvement
Project Moves a Step Closter

From RCTC’s On the Move e-newsletter

The Riverside County Transportation Commission’s (RCTC) procurement process for selecting a design-build team to design and construct the State Route 91 Corridor Improvement Project (SR-91 CIP) met a new milestone. After an exhaustive evaluation process, staff ranked proposals from four teams. The ranking was based on a competitive, best value procurement that evaluated proposals based on a combination of cost, schedule and technical matters.

1. Atkinson/Walsh, a Joint Venture
2. Shimmick/Obayashi/FNF, a Joint Venture
3. Flatiron/Skanska/Rados, a Joint Venture
4. Kiewit Infrastructure West

The procurement process is estimated to last for another two months as there are a number of financial, contractual and legal matters that must be finalized prior to Commission action to approve a design-build contract.

The SR-91 CIP is scheduled to open to traffic by the end of 2017. When completed, the project will widen the SR-91 through Corona, extend the existing 91 Express Lanes from the Orange County line to Interstate 15, improve local interchanges, reconstruct a portion of the 15/91 interchange, together with other regular and express lane improvements.


San Bernardino County Fire Department Color Guard presents colors in front of nearly 200 in attendance at the 29th Annual City-County Conference held in San Bernardino County.

City and County Officials from San Bernardino
Meet to Address Regional Issues

Elected officials, city and county staff, and other key contributors from throughout San Bernardino County participated in the 29th Annual City-County Conference on March 21 and 22 in Lake Arrowhead, California. This long-standing conference allows for representatives from both city and county government to come together and have a singular voice in determining the solutions to the challenges faced within the region.

“As a region, our strength is in our numbers,” said San Bernardino Associated Governments President Janice Rutherford. “Our message resonates much louder when we speak with one voice.”

The theme of the conference was “Turning the Corner,” and played off last year’s effort to address the vision for San Bernardino County. Discussions ranging from real estate trends and business friendly government practices to impacts of a locally controlled airport, CEQA reform and managing growth in a post-redevelopment agency environment proved to highlight the collective issues the entire region shares.

Dr. Richard Green from the USC Lusk Center for Real Estate reminded the attendees that San Bernardino County has done a good job of weathering the economic storm from the past half-decade. He highlighted housing trends that show growth and promise as the county ‘turns the corner’ toward opportunity. Coupling this data-driven reality with the presentation by Cecilia Estolano from ELP Advisors that encouraged the representatives in the audience to merge efforts and seek grant opportunities in ways they never have before seemed to inspire attendees on the value of coming together.

Officials and staff alike all seemed to leave the conference with a call for action. The leaders of our various cities, towns, communities, and businesses cannot sit passively waiting for economic recovery. It was obvious by the discussion at the conference that they plan to make their collective voice heard.


Hear Dr. John Husing’s economic report card and forecast for the Inland Empire at the 2013 State of the Region Conference.

Inland Empire State of the Region Conference

Wednesday, April 17
University of Redlands, Orton Center
More info | Register

The Inland Empire Economic Partnership (IEEP) is pleased to present the State of the Region Conference and share the talent, insight and passion that Dr. John Husing brings to each of his economic forecasts. This year’s conference theme is “A Full Recovery: What’s it Going to Take?” Join IEEP as Dr. Husing and guests provide insight to the Inland Empire’s economic standing and what it will take to recover.


SCAG 2013 Regional Conference & General Assembly

May 2-3
JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa
More info | Register

The Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) 2013 Regional Conference & General Assembly is May 2–3 at the JW Marriott in Palm Desert. This year’s conference, “Gateway to National Prosperity,” will focus on job growth, the economy and working together to build a sustainable region.


The second annual Inland Empire Quality of Life Summit is a public forum to lay out priorities for the Inland Empire’s 21st Century economy and will feature keynote speaker Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

Inland Empire Quality of Life Summit

Wednesday, May 22
UC Riverside, Highlander Union Building
More info | Register

On May 22 at the University of California Riverside, the Inland Empire Economic Partnership will present the second annual Inland Empire Quality of Life Summit. The summit is a vehicle for bringing together the area’s business, transportation, healthcare, sustainability and education leaders to discuss how their work interrelates, and what needs to be done to jointly create solutions for the issues that confront San Bernardino and Riverside counties.


Transportation Events in the Community

Friday, April 5
ACEC-LA: Construction Law Basics
More info | Register

Tuesday, April 16
WTS-OC: Metro Update Featuring Martha Welborne
More info

April 16 & 18
Metro Regional Connector Transit Corridor Project Community Meetings
More info

Wednesday, April 17
IEEP: State of the Region
More info | Register

Thursday, April 18
WTS-LA: Enhancing the Metrolink Experience
More info | Register

Thursday, April 18
CMAA: What Owners Want From Construction Managers
More info | Register

Wednesday, April 24
CMAA: LACMTA – Project Updates
More info | Register

Wednesday, April 24
WTS-IE: CEO Panel Discussion
More info | Register

Friday, April 26
IEEP: Regional Economic Forum
More info | Register

Monday, April 29
WTS-LA: America’s Ports, Gateway to Global Economy
More info | Register

Thursday, May 2
World Trade Week Kickoff Breakfast
More info | Register

May 2-3
SCAG: Regional Conference & General Assembly
More info | Register

May 15-17
WTS International Annual Conference
More info | Register

May 20-22
OCBC and ACC-OC: One Voice, Two Capitols Advocacy Trip
More info | Register

Wednesday, May 22
IEEP: Quality of Life Summit
More info | Register

Wednesday, June 19
FuturePorts: Annual Conference
More info

June 24-27
Alternative Clean Technology Expo: Washington, D.C.
More info | Register

Tuesday, Oct. 29
Mobility 21: 2013 Summit at the JW Marriott at L.A. Live

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