April 9, 2001
Conference highlights Emory TMA, alt-transportation strides
By Michael Terrazas firstname.lastname@example.org
President Bill Chace will speak at a biennial international summit of transportation management associations (TMAs) to be held April 1820 in the downtown Wyndham Atlanta Hotel. Georgia Gov. Roy Barnes is scheduled to deliver the events keynote address.
Sponsored by the Association for Commuter Transportation, the conference
is titled A TDM (Transportation Demand Man-aagement) Revival.
The conference will feature sessions and workshops on such traditional
alternative transportation issues as carpooling, vanpooling, public transit,
etc., but also on creative TMA funding, international TMAs and TMA alliances.
The summit will also hand out awards to individual organizations.
About 130 TMAs currently exist in the United States, according to Emory
alternative transportation Director Brian Shaw, and eight of them are
in Atlanta. Shaw added that groups from such countries as the Netherlands
and Canada will attend the summit, as well.
The event is open to the public. For more information, including registration
forms and fees, visit www.actweb.org.
Though technically Emory is not its host, Chace will deliver the conferences welcoming remarks.
We are immensely proud to [participate in] the event, and we hope
that what we have done on campus will continue to serve as a helpful model
for others, Chace said.
Emory was the driving force behind the creation of the three-year-old
Clifton Corridor TMA (CCTMA), and two University administratorsShaw
and Erick Gaither, senior associate vice president for business managementare
currently serving as CCTMA executive director and president, respectively.
The University has also drawn national recognition for its recent moves
toward a more pedestrian-friendly campus, exemplified in the Open Space
projects that have turned several previously car-cluttered, concrete Emory
thoroughfares into green, aesthetically pleasing walkways paved with red
brick. Tours of the Emory campus will be offered at the TMA summit.
More options are on the way for clean commuting at Emory, Shaw said.
For example, this year the University has extended its value pass program
to all employees who do not register for a daily parking permit. Previously
available only to carpoolers and vanpoolers, the passes allow holders
to park their individual vehicles in either the Michael Street or University
Apartments parking deck 12 times per year, with additional permits available
for $2 a day.
It was an equity issue, said Shaw, adding that it didnt
seem fair to offer the passes only to carpoolers. For example, people
who normally walk or ride bicycles to campus, or even those who take advantage
of Emorys MARTA subsidy, previously were ineligible for value passes.
Also coming soon are four new Ford Th!nk electric cars, available for
use by those people participating in alternative transportation programs.
Fifteen of the European-manufactured vehicles are being leased to Georgia
Power, and under a partnership agreement Shaw said Emory will get four
Its taking away an inconvenience, providing one less reason
for people not to use alternative transportation, Shaw said. The
two-passenger cars, which can travel up to 53 miles on a single charge
at a top speed of 56 mph, are street legal under a three-year exemption
from the federal Department of Transportation. Shaw said the pilot program
will be used to determine whether Emory will purchase more of the vehicles
once the lease expires.
But Shaw is loathe to predict a date when the vehicles will be available.
Beyond the logistical preparationsscheduling and administrative
systems, recharging capabilities, insurance liability mattershes
not sure of when the DOT grant funding will come through for Georgia Power
to acquire them.
Last year Emory and Georgia Power were awarded a federal matching grant
to purchase electric buses, but because of restrictions on what sort of
agency can receive DOT funding, the money has not materialized, to say
nothing of the buses. Shaw said hes confident both will arrivesomeday.
Its been an exercise in whats wrong with getting federal
money, and not to trust people who say they know what theyre doing,
Shaw said. Its unfortunate because weve been ready for
them since October. Weve done everything we can do, preparation-wise,
without actually knowing the make of bus well be getting.
For more information about alternative transportation alternatives, visit www.epcs.emory.edu/alternative_transportation.htm.