September 3, 2018

Mayor Emanuel Announces Creation of New Transportation and Mobility Task Force Led by Former USDOT Secretary Ray LaHood

The task force will assist the City in finding new ways to manage its transportation systems amid the rapidly changing landscape of the 21st Century

Mayor Rahm Emanuel today announced the creation of a New Transportation and Mobility Task Force headed by former U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. The Task Force will be charged with: evaluating the transportation landscape that is undergoing rapid technological change; making recommendations on how to support a vibrant public transit system; and incorporating new mobility technologies and companies into the City’s transportation systems.

“In just the last few years we have seen an explosion of new transportation options and technologies that are challenging us to think differently about how we manage our transportation systems,” Mayor Emanuel said.  “With Ray LaHood’s leadership and expertise, we are going to bring the best and the brightest together to help inform Chicago on how to move forward and maintain our status as a leader in transportation.”

Secretary LaHood is a former Member of Congress and has spent 36 years in public service with extensive experience on major national policy issues including transportation and infrastructure.

Members of the Task Force will be named in the coming weeks. They will represent a mix of people from government, academic institutions, business, advocacy groups, and neighborhood development. 

One of them will be Brenna Berman, Executive Director of City Tech Collaborative, the City of Chicago’s technology innovation arm. City Tech is a test-bed for new ideas and has experience in mobility issues and proven innovation process for moving ideas to execution. City Tech’s participation will offer a chance to leverage innovative partnerships with the private sector.

A number of City agencies will also be involved and provide input to the Task Force. These include: the Chicago Department of Transportation; the CTA; the Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection, which regulates the ride share and taxi industries; the Department of Finance; and the Mayor’s Office of People with Disabilities. 

The Task Force presents an opportunity to establish a focused agenda and identify both immediate actions and ambitious changes in support of a new vision for mobility. The group will meet over six months and include targeted consultations with key stakeholders and experts. Final recommendations will be issued in the spring of 2019.

The Task Force is charged with addressing the following areas and issues:

  • Establishing clear mobility goals and effective governance that serve as a framework for planning for, evaluating and managing current and future mobility options and identifying the appropriate City leadership to ensure future decisions align with such goals. 
  • Proposing changes to technology, policy, and public way use management to support the City’s mobility goals, including regulatory incentives, transit improvements, curbside use policies and data-sharing requirements/infrastructure.
  • Reviewing the areas of autonomous, connected and electric vehicles; enhancing CTA and other City transportation assets; promoting low and no carbon mobility choices; and finding sufficient and sustainable funding sources.

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