All posts by Sarah Kaufman

Event: Cities, Data, And Mobility: The NYC Experience

Date: 11/15/2016
Time: 8:45am – 10:00am
Location: The Puck Building, The Rudin Family Forum for Civic Dialogue, 2nd Fl., 295 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10012-9604

The  growth of NYC’s for-hire vehicle market means that the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission is gathering unprecedented amounts of trip data, yielding  a far more comprehensive view of how New Yorkers travel. The TLC uses this data to enforce consumer protections and safety requirements and to gain insight into emerging transportation models, accessibility and driver income. How can the public and private sectors use this data to inform policymaking?

Join us for a lively discussion.

Opening remarks: Meera Joshi, Commissioner and Chair, New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission

Gale Brewer, Manhattan Borough President
Cordell Schachter, Chief Technology Officer, New York City Department of Transportation
Sree Sreenivasan, Chief Digital Officer, City of New York
Anthony Townsend, Founder, Bits and Atoms

Moderated by Mitchell L. Moss, Director, NYU Rudin Center

RSVP here.

Photo: Michael Greenberg

NYU Rudin Center Emerging Leader Featured in NY Times

Adrian Untermyer, deputy director of the Historic Districts Council and alumnus of the NYU Rudin Center Emerging Leaders program, was featured in The New York Times today. He has organized the installation of a piano in the Port Authority Bus Terminal to make commutes more pleasant. As noted in the article, “Mr. Untermyer said he made connections that he used to advance the piano project when he had an Emerging Leaders in Transportation fellowship at New York University’s Rudin Center for Transportation Management last fall.”

The NYU Rudin Center is proud of Adrian’s work and is looking forward to enjoying piano concertos in the Port Authority Bus Terminal.

Read the full article here.

Announcing the Emerging Leaders in Transportation 2016

Congratulations to the 2016 class of Emerging Leaders in Transportation! We are thrilled to welcome these impressive individuals to the NYU Rudin Center to amplify their leadership skills, develop new ideas to bring to their workplaces, and create an innovator network among local transportation organizations. We can’t wait to see what they do.

Meet the Fellows:

  • Zak Accuardi is a program analyst at TransitCenter, where he conducts original research and figures out how to use data to improve planning and empower transportation advocates.
  • Michael Anderson uses big data and big money to improve accessibility, one taxi at a time, at the NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission.
  • Candace Brakewood, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering at the City College of New York, where she teaches and conducts research in public transit and transportation planning.
  • Sutapa Bhattacherjee is a principal planner at the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority responsible for maintaining and updating the Congestion Management System of the agency.
  • Theodore Brown is a project manager at Intersection where he works on the LinkNYC deployment team and has focused his career on the interplay between people, place, and technology.
  • Anthony Burton is a Policy Analyst in the Office of the Secretary at the U.S. Department of Transportation where he works on the TIGER Discretionary Grants program and the Secretary’s pedestrian and bicycle safety initiative.
  • Holly Chase (MIT DUSP ’11) is a transit planner at Sam Schwartz Consulting who gets fired up about bike commuting, running marathons, and enhancing quality of life through transportation choice.
  • Jamison Dague is the Director of Infrastructure Studies at the Citizens Budget Commission, researching the MTA, Port Authority, and New York City and New York States departments of transportations and their facilities.
  • Marc Ebuña is a co-founder of TransitMatters, a Boston-based transit policy advocacy non-profit group focused on working with government and community leaders to win efficient, reliable, equitable transit service throughout Greater Boston.
  • Jacob Friedman is Product Principal at Via, where he works with Via’s partners in the public and private sector to incorporate Via’s on-demand transit technology into a range of applications.
  • Alexandra Gore is a transportation engineer at WSP|Parsons Brinckerhoff, focusing on multi-resolution modeling and capacity analysis on projects of all sizes across the region, and recently completed her Master’s degree from the NYU Tandon School of Engineering.
  • Inna Guzenfeld is a planner, educator and historian, with a focus on waterfront development and ferry transit in New York City.
  • Jonathan Hawkins is a Senior Transportation Planner in Bus Service Planning at MTA New York City Transit; he has a master’s degree in urban planning from Rutgers University and prior experience in bicycle and pedestrian planning.
  • Shrisan Iyer is a plangineer at New York City Transit, working on sustaining and improving our public transportation system, while ultimately interested in making our city a better place to live and work.
  • Min Kim is the Supervisor of Ground Transportation Systems in the Aviation Department of the Port Authority of NY & NJ; currently pursuing an MBA at the Stern School of Business, she holds an masters in public policy and has experience in migration policy, urban issues and community development.
  • Nolan Levenson is a project manager at the New York City Department of Transportation’s Pedestrian Projects Group, where he designs and manages the implementation of projects that improve multimodal safety and quality of life throughout New York City.
  • Dennis Lytton is the Program Manager for Safety & Security at the American Public Transportation in Washington, DC.
  • Juan Martinez: Prior to serving as a member of NYC DOT’s policy office, where he works to advance Vision Zero, Juan was General Counsel at Transportation Alternatives
  • Carmen Oleksinski is part of the Strategic Initiatives group at MTA New York City Transit where she specializes in policy development, data analysis, and innovative projects that cross departmental borders; she has master’s degrees in transportation planning and engineering from the University of California, Berkeley.
  • Melissa Plaut is a Program Analyst at TransitCenter; she previously worked at the on-demand taxi app, Hailo, and first became interested in transportation issues when she became a NYC yellow taxi driver – an experience she documented in a memoir, Hack, published by Random House.
  • Adam Popper is a Project Manager for the City of Toronto’s Transportation Services Division, and is focused on bringing about more sustainable and equitable cities through multi-modal transportation.
  • Renata Silberblatt is an urban planner interested in the intersection between transportation networks and community resiliency; prior to her current position as Policy Director of the NY Rising Community Reconstruction Program at the [NYS] Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery, she was the Senior Analyst at the Tri-State Transportation Campaign.
  • Seth Ullman is an Assistant Vice President at the New York City Economic Development Corporation where he develops policies and plans that facilitate safe, efficient, and equitable mobility.
  • Jackson Whitmore recently graduated with an M.S. in Public Policy and Data Analytics from Carnegie Mellon and now works as an Associate Planner at Regional Plan Association.

The fellowship will be directed by Sarah Kaufman of the NYU Rudin Center.

This fellowship is co-sponsored by the University Transportation Research Center.

Driverless Cars Symposium

We participated in yesterday’s symposium about Driverless Cars hosted by Gale Brewer, Manhattan Borough President. Panelists included William Carry, NYC Department of Transportation; Jeff Garber, NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission; Brad Stertz, Audi; and Sarah M. Kaufman, NYU Rudin Center for Transportation. The panel was moderated by Johanna Bhuiyan, Recode.

Watch the event video:

New Report: Intelligent Paratransit

Our new report, Intelligent Paratransit, is available for download here.

Executive Summary

As Americans aged 65 or older increase from fifteen to twenty percent of the population by 2030, cities across the United States will face a transportation crisis. Urban residents who are physically unable to use public transportation, including the disabled and mobility-impaired elderly, are offered paratransit services. These paratransit systems, as required by an unfunded 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act mandate, are enormous, and growing annually in new applications and budget requirements.

Paratransit demand is growing nationwide and costs continually increase (now $5.2 billion nationwide); the user experience is often reported as poor. To address efficiency and user experience, this report assesses the state of paratransit, analyzes innovative solutions in three cities and recommends potential technological solutions. The Intelligent Paratransit Technological Upgrade Framework includes improvements in the areas of Onboarding, Reservations, Dispatch & Routing and User Experience. Key technological recommendations include:

  • Ride reservations should be available through multiple channels: phone, apps, SMS messaging, physical infrastructure on the street and wearable technology for riders.
  • Paratransit agencies must collaborate with taxis and app-based car services, including Uber, Lyft, Via and SilverRide, to integrate efficient services.
  • Services connecting riders to transit should feature real-time, in-vehicle data integration with transit services to optimize accessibility of trips.
  • As cities grow in language diversity, paratransit vehicles should feature on-board translation apps and call-in numbers to better service all riders.

By applying new technological systems to a 26 year-old mandate, paratransit services can be made more efficient and provide a better customer experience. In New York City, these upgrades could save the agency up to $133 million per year. Improving mobility solutions for the elderly and disabled is possible, necessary and urgent.

Reimagining Southwest Brooklyn

The NYU Rudin Center for Transportation hosted Reimagining Southwest Brooklyn last week. Chris Ward of global engineering firm AECOM presented a redevelopment plan that would add thousands of residential units to the Brooklyn waterfront and a subway connection to lower Manhattan.

Read the Southwest Brooklyn study here.

NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission Hackathon

Help NYC TLC provide more public data – identify potential privacy risks in public taxi datasets!

The TLC has been a pioneer in sharing big data since 2010. With over 21,000 licensed vehicles equipped to capture GPS-enabled trip records. TLC’s trip data are valuable for policy makers, scholars, businesses and urban planners. Earlier data releases included anonymized vehicle and driver identifiers, but in 2014 they were de-anonymized and published. In response, we stopped releasing these identifiers altogether, which limits the data’s usefulness.  TLC would like you help to re-release this information in the most efficient manner possible.

Read contest rules and more information at the hackathon website.

Hopscotch: Los Angeles’ In-Vehicle Opera

File under: only in L.A. Hopscotch, the opera, took place in 24 coordinated vehicles on the move through the city.

“You’re invited into a car not knowing the destination. The car starts moving and suddenly you’re drawn into the story with singers and musicians that are in the car with you. And as they drive through the city, activity will be happening all around you.”