Transportation is critical to the economy and central to individuals’ quality of life. A strong transportation system must enable the convenient mobility of people and the efficient movement of goods; a sustainable transportation system must do this while also limiting its environmental impact. The transportation sector has impacts on greenhouse gas emissions, air and water quality, public health, and economic development. Local elected officials can adopt transportation planning strategies that equitably serve a diversity of travel modes, such as bus, rail, pedestrian, bicycle and automobile, that promote development around existing infrastructure, and that link people with jobs and economic opportunities. NLC supports sustainable transportation systems that reduce environmental effects, promote economic prosperity, and improve the community’s quality of life.
Integrating Bike Share Systems into a Sustainable Transportation System (2011)
As cities of all sizes face challenges in maintaining effective, agile transportation systems, bike share programs are emerging as a cost effective and sustainable way to expand the portfolio of transit options. By providing an automated, public, bicycle rental program with a pricing structure that incentives short trips, cities are realizing economic, environmental and public health benefits. Denver, CO, Washington, DC, Minneapolis, MN and Buffalo, NY are highlighted in this City Practice Brief.
CitiesSpeak Blog: Bikeshare Systems Contribute to Transporation Infrastructure Strategy
CitiesSpeak Blog: Recent Advances in Bikeshare Systems from Miami to Washington, DC
How Cities Can Work to Reduce Fuel Consumption (2009)
Municipal governments face increasing pressures on their budgets and are being forced to make difficult decisions about service delivery. This guide helps local elected officials take a hard look at one area in which efficiencies are possible.
Local Roles in Integrating Transportation and Land Use (2008)
Transportation planning tends to occur at a regional scale, while land use authorities are vested primarily with local jurisdictions. Given the intrinsic connection between transportation and land use, the best to route to improving quality of life is to ensure that regional and local perspectives are mutually supportive. This guide provides local officials with strategies and action steps to help foster the integration of transportation and land use.
Alternative Fuel Programs for Municipal Fleets (2008)
In order to reduce costs, and as part of a larger effort to decrease fossil fuel dependence, cities are exploring alternative fuel programs for municipal fleets. Some local governments are enjoying financial benefits from reduced fuel consumption, as well as societal benefits including improved air quality and lower greenhouse gas emissions. This City Practice Brief showcases the efforts of ten cities across the country to lead by example and improve the sustainability of their municipal operations.
Nation's Cities Weekly Articles
Clean Cities Can Help Local Governments Pave the Way for Electric Vehicles (May 16, 2011)
As communities throughout the country grapple with rising gas prices, electric vehicles and hybrids are getting more attention than ever. The U.S. Department of Energy's Clean Cities initiative offers local governments valuable tools and resources for successful deployment of electric vehicles (EVs) and charging infrastructure.
NLC Opposes Change in Transportation Spending Rules (January 10, 2011)
Transportation projects require multi-year funding commitments and depend on stable and reliable funding from year to year. Under the proposed rule change, highway funding authorized by the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee would be treated as other general spending and therefore be permitted to be used to reduce the deficit rather than improve transportation infrastructure.
NLC Joins Defense of New York's Clean Vehicle Promotion Law (November 29, 2010)
In the case, New York asks the Supreme Court to rule that federal law - the Energy Policy and Conservation Act and Clean Air Act - does not prevent it from enacting regulations to promote clean vehicle use.
Port Infrastructure: Transportation for the Economy (November 1, 2010)
Maintaining ports is vital for economic stability. Ports face challenges related to safety and security issues, as well as to funding -- not only for maintenance and operations but also for increasing capacity to deal with future growth.
High-Speed Finance for High-Speed Rail? (October 18, 2010)
A national infrastructure bank could reduce the complexity of expensive transportation projects, funding high-speed rail networks quickly and creating thousands of jobs in the U.S.
President Announces Vision for New Transportation System (September 13, 2010)
President Obama's transportation plan includes an upfront $50 billion investment in transportation to jumpstart job creation, the creation of an Infrastructure Bank to leverage federal dollars, a commitment to high-speed rail, and a dedication to environmental sustainability and increasing transportation choices in communities.
Cabinet Secretaries Discuss Livable Communities (March 22, 2010)
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson spoke at NLC's Congressional City Conference about the federal cross-agency initiative focused on creating affordable, sustainable communities.
Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy's Vehicle Technologies Program, Clean Cities is a government-industry partnership designed to reduce petroleum consumption in the transportation sector by promoting alternative fuels and advanced vehicle solutions. Clean Cities deploys technologies and practices such as idle-reduction equipment, electric drive vehicles, fuel economy measures, and renewable and alternative fuels such as natural gas, liquefied petroleum gas (propane), electricity, hydrogen, biofuels, and biogas. Clean Cities TV offers several video clips demonstrating how these technologies are working in cities across the country.