Established in 2013, Forge Ahead proposes a vision of a world-class transportation system for the City of Columbus that includes best practices in other urban areas — which can be tailored to the Columbus Region.
It is no secret that there is a tide coming in the form of robust population growth and job creation. The latest estimates by the US Census Bureau show the 15 cities with biggest population increases were in the South and West — with two exceptions: New York City and Columbus.
The good news is investments are in the pipeline for a variety of infrastructure systems. The bad news is that Columbus leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to multi-modal transportation investments.
The very presence of a convenient and accessible multi-modal transportation system will help attract and retain a skilled and creative workforce. The growth of the region cannot be accommodated by expansion of the highway system alone. As the costs of automobile ownership and fuel continue to grow, there is a need to provide alternative means of transportation to sustain the social and economic well-being of the Columbus Region. Investment in new and expanded pedestrian, bicycle, and transit services can ease growing congestion while providing an equitable transportation system. As for nascent transportation technologies, Columbus is right to take a leadership role in their development. Why? Because that’s what world-class cities do.
I invite you to please read and explore the Forge Ahead report. Make a list of your favorite ideas on how to improve our transportation system, drawing on the success of best practices from around the world. Start the conversation and raise awareness to others. Our future is counting on you.
Thank you and enjoy,
J.M. Rayburn, Forge Ahead Project Manager