April 1, 2009

Your monthly pass to better transit and more wonderful, walkable communities.

Okay, so it's April Fools' Day and President Obama isn't (currently) scheduled to stop by TransForm's offices.

But we're not joking around when it comes to "reinventing America's cities to be sustainable, livable and socially just places", as the New York Times put it so eloquently in a fascinating article on Sunday.

Read on for the latest from TransForm:

  • Get the early-bird special for TransForm's May 16 Annual Summit now!
  • Regional Transportation Plan fails to meet climate goals; funding for good programs at risk – speak out April 22
  • TransForm is shaking things up in Sacramento
  • Tell BART to put a new station where it makes sense
  • Make Alameda County a model for bicycling and walking
  • San Leandro sets a new standard for creating inclusive, walkable communities
  • TransForm responds to a tragic accident in Berkeley
  • Grease your gears and get ready for National Bike Month in May; volunteers needed
  • Events from our regional coalition member organizations
  • Save $1000's with the free green coupon guide you get with a TransForm individual membership!

Get the early-bird special for TransForm's May 16 Annual Summit now!

The Summit is just $20 if you register by May 1. You won't want to miss this year's Summit for all kinds of reasons: a fascinating keynote; tons of great sessions; walking, bicycling, and transit tours; and a networking hour. Get the complete scoop on the Summit and register now.

Regional Transportation Plan fails to meet climate goals; funding for good programs at risk – speak out April 22

On April 22, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) will adopt the final Regional Transportation Plan (RTP). The final RTP proposed unprecedented levels of funding for: maintaining public transit; creating better transit connections between low-income communities and key destinations; walking and bicycling safety and infrastructure; promoting smart growth; and fighting climate change.

But as we celebrate and support MTC’s adoption of these excellent programs, critical issues remain. Join us on April 22 in both thanking MTC for their leadership and asking them to: 1) prioritize funding for the programs that will allow the region to meet climate goals and improve livability, and 2) embrace the land use changes and smarter transportation pricing needed to meet climate goals, including immediately initiating a stakeholder process to develop strategies for achieving these goals.

The meeting will be from 10am-12pm on April 22 at MTC and we need you to attend! Learn more about the April 22 event and TransForm’s RTP campaign.

TransForm is shaking things up in Sacramento

Just last month, TransForm opened a satellite office in Sacramento to more effectively fight for state transit funding. Our efforts are already paying off! TransForm was recently part of a lobby day that brought together transit operators and environmental and labor leaders to meet with key legislators. As a result of these efforts, transportation staff for Senate President pro tem Darrell Steinberg reaffirmed the Senator’s commitment to restoring crucial transit operating funds and announced the formation of a Senate working group focused solely on transit funding. Read more about how TransForm is building a statewide coalition to protect and expand state funding for public transportation.

Tell BART to put a new station where it makes sense

The City of Antioch wants to build a walkable neighborhood with homes, jobs, and shops adjacent to the future Hillcrest Avenue BART station. But BART is proposing putting the future station out next to a PG&E station instead of where a transit-oriented neighborhood would thrive. We need your help sending this message at an upcoming BART meeting on April 23. Learn more and RSVP to attend the BART meeting.

Make Alameda County a model for bicycling and walking

TransForm, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (a regional coalition member organization), and United Seniors are working with the Alameda County Transportation Improvement Authority to make Alameda County a model for bicycling and walking. The 2010 Campaign for Active Transportation seeks to bring $50 million of that federal funding to Alameda County to complete the Iron Horse Trail, expand Safe Routes to Schools programs, and improve access to transit for seniors. Come discuss the campaign Thursday, April 16 from 6:30-8:30pm at Dublin City Hall. Learn more or call Rails-to-Trails at 415-814-1100.

San Leandro sets a new standard for creating inclusive, walkable communities

When San Leandro recently approved 100 units of affordable apartments as part of a major new mixed-use development, it was an important step towards creating a vibrant place with a range of housing types, jobs, shops, and services within easy walking distance of transit. This happened thanks to deep community involvement and the work of the Great Communities Collaborative (which TransForm is part of). Learn how and what it means for the Bay Area.

TransForm responds to a tragic accident in Berkeley

The death of kindergartener Zachary Cruz, plus a number of other recent pedestrian injuries involving Berkeley students near their schools, underscores the urgent need to create safer streets around schools. Walking and bicycling to school can be an incredibly positive activity for kids and good for communities as a whole – but only if it is safe. TransForm, as the leader of the Alameda County Safe Routes to Schools Partnership, has been directly responding to the accidents through safety trainings and working for infrastructure improvements. Learn more.

Grease your gears and get ready for National Bike Month in May; volunteers needed

Join the masses in this month-long celebration of bicycling and all the health, fun, and financial benefits that come with riding. Volunteers are needed in your neighborhood for "energizer stations" on May 14, the official Bike to Work Day in the Bay Area. You can also volunteer with TransForm as a part of Bike to Work Day at either a May 11th goodie bag stuffing at REI in Berkeley or May 14 from 4-7pm at one of our energizer stations (East Bay BART Stations). Learn more.

Events from our regional coalition member organizations

Shaping Berkeley's Downtown Plan to Support Transit-Oriented Development.

Berkeley's Downtown Plan, which will likely recommend substantially more housing than the current Plan, will have its final hearing at the Planning Commission on April 15. The Climate Action Plan, which encourages more housing near transit, will be on the City Council agenda for adoption on April 21. City decision makers need to know that there is strong support for these changes. Learn more and attend.

Get Trained to Fight Climate Change through City Planning.

Greenbelt Alliance and Nonprofit Housing Association of Northern California is providing a training workshop in Novato on April 16 to introduce the latest tools for addressing climate change and will discuss how local residents can help shape city plans to reduce greenhouse gases. Learn more.

Bay Localize Hosts a Night of Music, Insight, and Conversation.

Join Bay Localize on April 23 in Oakland for an evening of music, insight, and conversation around building stronger communities in the face of climate change and the economic crisis. Learn how global, federal, and state policies will impact local efforts -- and how you can get involved! Learn more.

East Bay Asian Local Development Corporation's Second Annual Casino Night and Poker Tournament Fundraiser. Play to win while supporting a great community development nonprofit on April 30 from 6:30 - 10:30 p.m. at the Washington Inn in Downtown Oakland. Learn more and buy tickets.

Save $1000's with the free green coupon guide you get with a TransForm individual membership!

Still not an individual member of TransForm? Now's the time! We just added an incredible money-saving perk to membership: Green Zebra and Eco-Metro Guides loaded with coupons for your part of the Bay Area! Learn more and become an individual member.