TransForm in the News

Officials, experts give perspective on Bay Area transit troubles
January 9, 2010

Stuart Cohen, executive director of Oakland-based nonprofit TransForm:

"It's going to be a big problem for the transit riders who either have to deal with that inconvenience or spend money for a new vehicle or take the car they already have. And it's going to be just as big a headache for people who are already driving."

January 4, 2010

"[The proposal] will likely reduce revenues and everyone agrees that the last thing we need to do right now is reduce revenues," said Stuart Cohen, Executive Director of TransForm, a non-profit supporting transit and smart growth. "We’re seeing service cuts and fare hikes that are larger than we’ve ever seen. Many agencies have already depleted their reserves dealing with cuts over the past two years. I don’t think these agencies can take another year of it."

January 4, 2010

Smart Growth America coalition member TransForm has developed a certification program called GreenTRIP to encourage building the kinds of places we need to reduce our carbon emissions.

January 1, 2010
The real opportunity today is improving bus transit, says Stuart Cohen, the executive director of TransForm, a decade-old transportation policy group in Oakland. “There are two ways to think about what Oakland needs — better infrastructure and smarter policies,” he says. “We need to revolutionize bus service, since we won’t get any more BART lines. Improving our alternatives means improving buses. If you have buses that act like trains in terms of speed and reliability, it will break us out of this view of buses as inferiors or transportation of last resort.”
January 1, 2010
TransForm's Transportation Program Director, Carli Paine, has the following comments on the bill:

"We are disappointed with the package, but understand that it represents the best package that legislators were able to develop given the state budget crisis. Together, the bills strip public transportation of potentially billions of dollars of funding that advocates have been fighting to protect, and replace them with limited funding that remains vulnerable to raids. This proposal will result in an annual budget battle to ensure that the funding dedicated to public transit actually gets allocated to our buses, trains, and ferries."

December 30, 2009

The Ohlone, an 800-unit housing development proposed for 8.25 acres along West San Carlos and Sunol streets in San Jose, is the first Bay Area project to be officially certified for reducing traffic.

Ann Cheng, senior planner at TransForm, said her organization, formerly the Transportation and Land Use Coalition, seeks to recognize developers who build projects that accomplish these goals.

The environmental movement in construction has convinced developers of the importance of earning certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. TransForm, based in Oakland, wants to do the same thing with cars.

“How people get to and from their new homes is just as important as what those homes are made of,” Cheng said.

December 22, 2009
"By really focusing on this element--how much traffic [developments] generate--we think this tool is a huge complement to existing LEED and will serve an important function that LEED doesn't get to," said Stuart Cohen, TransForm's Executive Director. "The best thing is the reaction from cities and developers: they are hungry for this."
December 21, 2009
"This is the first program in the country dedicated to sustainability through travel demand management, not more capacity," said Stuart Cohen, Executive Director of TransForm, a smart growth and transportation advocacy organization.
December 17, 2009
Stuart Cohen, the executive director for TransForm, an  Oakland-based transit advocacy group, praised today's vote, saying it  "continues the MTC's reputation as an innovator and leader" and predicted it  will be copied by other transportation agencies across the country.

He said, "This makes the Bay Area the first region in the country  to have a program to cut global warming pollution by trying to decrease  demand on the roadways."

Cohen said that's important because "transportation is by far the  biggest source of global warming pollution in California and the country."
BART awards $492 million contract for people-mover tram to Oakland International Airport
December 11, 2009
John Knox White of Transform, an Oakland-based public transit advocacy group, said the people-mover is much more expensive and offers no better service than passengers would get if BART instead developed an express bus service to the airport.
December 11, 2009
John Knox White of TransForm, an Oakland-based advocacy group, also said he doesn't think the people mover service will be as quick as BART is projecting and he thinks there will be fewer riders than BART is estimating.
December 11, 2009

Critics acknowledged that the project was likely to be approved but criticized BART for not providing sufficient information about the project, not updating ridership figures and not giving due consideration to alternatives, including a less-costly rapid bus service. BART estimates that 4,350 passengers a day will ride the people mover - an estimate it updated earlier this year.

John Knox White of TransForm, a transit advocacy group, called on BART to delay the decision and take a harder look at the project.

"You need to have the information before you can vote," he said.

December 1, 2009
To transit watchers like Carli Paine, transportation program director of TransForm—a policy organization that advocates for public transit and more walkable communities—the possibility of service cutbacks seems inevitable. “It was a situation that was really waiting to happen,” she says, “because we don’t have long-term sustainable, stable funding for public transit operations.”
November 30, 2009
TransForm (formerly known as TALC, the Transportation and Land Use Coalition), has recently developed a program to integrate a host of otherwise independent green concerns, notably transportation and housing. The program — GreenTRIP — offers a type of smart growth certification for new residential and mixed-use developments.
November 21, 2009
"This report provides hard evidence that SB 375 … has the power to act as an economic driver," said Stuart Cohen, executive director of TransForm.