Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Who says you can't get there from here?

The "Free" Bridge from Easton to Phillipsburg, NJ

Renew Lehigh Valley will host a Regional Transportation Forum on Monday, April 19, at the Historic Hotel Bethlehem (437 Main Street, Bethlehem). The program begins at 6:30 p.m. with an informal reception at 5:30 p.m., and is completely free and open to the public.

You'll learn about the prospects for restoring passenger rail service in the Lehigh Valley, and hear how a balanced regional transportation system can help promote economic development, the continued revitalization of the region's core communities, and sustainable growth in the Lehigh Valley.

The keynote speaker for the forum is Shelley Poticha, Senior Advisor at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). One of the nation's leading experts on transportation and transit-oriented development, Ms. Poticha oversees the Sustainable Communities program, a joint effort between HUD, the U.S Department of Transportation, and the Environmental Protection Agency. Prior to joining HUD, Ms. Poticha was President/CEO of Reconnecting America, and has also served as the Executive Director of the Congress for the New Urbanism.
The forum program will include a Presentation of Findings from the New Regional Transportation Study (commissioned by the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation and the two counties), which includes a preliminary feasibility study of extending NJ Transit commuter rail westward into the Lehigh Valley, followed by a Panel Discussion and Q & A on how the Lehigh Valley Moves Forward on Transportation.

If you come from a city that had comprehensive public transportation, you will especially appreciate the conversation at the forum. Find out what the transportation study found feasible for transportation in our region and put your two cents in. See you there.


  1. Anonymous3/23/2010

    Excellent recommendation for any concerned Lehigh Valley citizen who wants to see our region grow responsibly.

  2. Trent S.3/25/2010

    Great heads up on a very important issue in Lehigh Valley. A great resource to understand the complexities of rail transit is a new book called "Waiting on a Train; The Embattled Future of Passenger Rail Service" by James McCommons 2009. As a lifetime mass transit user, I picked it up at the local library. One needs to read this book to see just how expensive and complicated rail service is. One also can see how the US and states dump nearly all their money into road projects and expect rail transit to pay for itself, which is ridiculous. The book provides really good examples of how Portland, Seattle, Boston and others are making rail transit work as a sustainable regional planning effort.