Both the Center for Transit-Oriented Development and PPS are committed to engaging in these, and similarly aligned, efforts to continue the momentum of the Thinking Beyond the Station initiative and securing additional partners in the transit industry. CTOD and PPS are planning the following activities towards these ends, most of which are dependent on securing additional funding:
- Create “CSS for Transit” Training Program: Based on the results of PPS’s efforts at Railvolution, we will begin to outline the elements and topics to be included in a training program on context sensitive solutions (CSS) for transit – those that are of interest to or are required by the industry. We will work with CTOD to craft a complete training program and curriculum for a national CSS training institute.
- Training Sessions: Facilitate a series of 6 to 8 training sessions around the country over a 2-year period with an on-site visit, local case study component, and panel discussion attached to each.
- Pilot Station Improvement Projects: Develop strategies for improving/retrofitting existing stations, starting with 20 pilot stations, specifically considering second-tier cities and agencies.
- FTA New Starts Projects: Using funding from the FTA New Starts program – an initiative that funds new and extended transit guideways across the nation – PPS and CTOD would like to work with communities planning new transit projects to ensure that they “get it right” from the beginning, enabling their facilities and surrounding areas to thrive for years to come. We would accomplish this first by developing standards and models of effective stations and, subsequently, by identifying the relevant transit agencies, transportation departments, community planners and regional planning bodies in the area. These stakeholders could convene to conduct on-site “Place Evaluations” and planning sessions to clarify Thinking Beyond the Station goals and help to move the project forward in the best possible direction.
PPS would evaluate stations before and after improvements, tracking such indicators as ridership numbers and economic impacts in adjacent areas. These pilot projects would entail site visits, public workshops, and design charrettes with transit staff, transit leadership and planners. We would seek matching funds to assist the transit agencies in funding station area plans.