Transportation moves people and goods through cities, states, and countries, allowing people to decide where to live, work, recreate, and shop, or decide where to go on short weekend trips or long vacations. We rely on transportation for nearly everything we do. Since the beginning of time, every civilization has relied on some form of transportation, and the transportation priorities and goals change as the needs of society change. The communities we live in and serve today are asking for multimodal, diverse solutions that allow them to get where they want to go safely, while also providing options for a healthier lifestyle.
Transportation planners look at the bigger picture and seek options that address health and equity. Transportation engineers look at ways to implement those recommendations. Transportation planners and engineers look and use data differently, but all of us want to come up with safe transportation solutions for our friends, family, and neighbors. The needs and best interest of the communities are served when transportation planners, engineers, and others work together to create transportation facilities that are in accord with the range of public needs and the goals of the community and region.
As part of ITE 2021-2023 Strategic Plan, ITE launched the Transportation Planner Initiative in November to broaden our Community of Transportation Professionals, and to be the place of collaboration for transportation planners and engineers. In this issue of ITE Journal, you will find an update on the Transportation Planner Initiative starting on page 21, which includes the accomplishments to date and the goals for 2023. A special thanks to the Transportation Planning Advisory Group, led by Jeff Riegner, P.E., PTOE, AICP (F), that helped us identify priorities and opportunities to enhance ITE’s services and products.
This issue also includes several case studies from agencies and firms that demonstrate the intersection of these two sectors of the industry. All are great examples of how the collaboration of transportation engineers and planners produce great projects for the benefit of our communities: from Complete Streets and pedestrian safety to improved bus lanes facilities.
The 2023 ITE Virtual Conference will be held on March 14-15 under the theme “Great Communities: At the Intersection of Planning and Engineering.” The virtual conference, put
together by ITE Councils and Committees, will showcase the importance of planners and engineers working collaboratively and provide real-world examples of their success. Conference attendees will obtain knowledge and insights on practices and recommendations that they can implement/adjust as necessary to improve the quality of life of their communities.
After the Virtual Conference, I will be visiting the Southern District at their 2023 Annual Meeting in Savannah, GA, USA on my first District visit as 2023 International President. The program for the conference includes a wealth of diverse content, from big data, planning for growth, Complete Streets, safety, operations, connected and electric vehicles, and equity planning, among other topics. We encourage all Districts, Sections, and Chapters to have this diversity of content at the local meetings so we can reach a much broader community of transportation professionals and acquire more diversity of thoughts and ideas for the benefit of our communities.
Please reach me by email at email@example.com or on the ITE e-Community.