Pro Walk/Pro Bike was an energizing experience, all the trends are pointing in the right direction and the movement for better bicycling and walking (Active Transportation) can only go forward. While the movement still needs to work on being more inclusive, we are getting better at it.
But participating in the DVRPC Board Retreat at the Ace Conference Center in Lafayette Hill brought me back to reality. Around here the Active Transportation movement must be wintering at Valley Forge.
The opening session was a presentation about the current transportation funding crisis in Pennsylvania. Basically to build everything in the 2035 Long Range plan transportation funding must double. The tolling on I-80 proposal has failed and the current political climate makes a hike in the gas tax highly unlikely. On the Jersey side the Transportation Trust Fund faces bankruptcy
But it was the breakout session that showed me how far we still needed to go.
People started talking about trends and were saying the right things, young people moving back to urban areas and are delaying their driver licenses. On the opposite end of the spectrum a lack of transportation options affects our ability to age in place. The new economy may end the flight to the exurbs. The region is almost totally built out. Cities and inner suburbs share the same problems.