As part of a groundbreaking environmental justice program funded by Caltrans, California’s transportation authority, two Bay Area transportation organizations will receive an environmental justice planning grant. Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) and the Northern California chapter of the Conference of Minority Transportation Officials (COMTO) will be implementing the grant, which is designed to increase community collaboration between 18- to 25- year-old males, transportation governing bodies, and key decision makers. Project results will be captured in a guidebook of recommendations for integrating local concerns about safety and security into transportation decision making.
BART is the applicant and primary sponsor of this project. BART will act as the grant recipient in the contract with Caltrans, conduct general oversight, and support any required coordination of resources. The Northern California chapter of COMTO is the sub-applicant, providing on-the-ground leadership, making arrangements for all direct labor, and managing the bulk of the project’s efforts, including schedules, budget, and deliverables.
COMTO members wrote the grant application and are valuable participants in the implementation of the grant, providing project consultants, technical assistance, and access to governing and decision making boards and transportation agencies. Much of the work in support of this project involves information and data collection, outreach, surveys, and partnership coordination as well as meeting and event planning. COMTO’s large body of scholarship recipients, many of whom fit the target demographic, will be working with the chapter to implement the project.
The project will use a case study approach based on a dynamic environmental justice information processing toolkit developed by Glenn Robinson of Morgan State University, the Urban Research Institute, and its partners (www.BREJTP.com). The toolkit demonstrates how a dynamic environmental justice information processing experience can effectively engage the community in transportation planning. Lee L. Davis, COMTO Chapter President, recognizing the work of Morgan State and its partners, noted, “We acknowledge the group that developed the toolkit, which will provide a strong basis for reference as we develop the guidebook.”
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Contact: Marilyn Ababio, PM