(LOS ANGELES, CA, Sept. 21, 2009) – Regional transportation leaders today convened to highlight Mobility 21’s “IMBY” – “In My Back Yard” List*
of critical transportation projects to improve mobility throughout Southern California.
The “IMBY” List was developed by Mobility 21, the leading Southern California transportation coalition, and revealed at its 8th Annual Southern California Transportation Summit attended by more than 600 government, business and civic leaders from Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego and Ventura Counties, including representatives from the Automobile Club of Southern California.
“Not only will these projects reduce traffic and improve air quality,” said Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, “the Westside subway extension and the other projects will create thousands of good jobs for local people and catapult the region to economic recovery once they are fully funded and break ground.”
As critical transportation legislation – such as the next Surface Transportation Authorization bill – makes its way through federal, state and local governments, this year’s Summit focused on strategies for planning and funding Southern California's Transportation Future. The annual event also serves as a springboard for the Mobility 21 Coalition’s advocacy efforts, which aim to secure needed funding for transportation projects throughout the six-county region.
"Mobility continues to be important to Southern Californians because it impacts both our quality of life and economic potential," said Alice Bisno, senior vice president of public affairs for the Auto Club. "Mobility 21's mission to bring our region together and present a united voice for transportation is needed now more than ever."
“I applaud the Mobility 21 Coalition and the transportation leaders who have gathered here today for working to address the region’s most pressing transportation challenges,” said California Business, Transportation & Housing Agency Secretary Dale E. Bonner. “When it comes to transportation and other critical infrastructure, speaking with one voice helps everyone understand that investment in Southern California pays dividends to the people of this region and the state and national economies.”
This year’s Summit was attended by transportation leaders including: Secretary of the California Business, Transportation & Housing Agency Dale Bonner; Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa; and many others. Among issues addressed were financing California's transportation infrastructure; a corridor approach to goods movement investment; strategies for transit and highway efficiency; and how to position Southern California as the leader in developing a U.S. high-speed rail system.
“California is making notable progress when it comes to one of our most important long-term mobility solutions - high-speed rail," said Art Leahy, CEO of the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro). "High Speed Rail will not only be a tremendous boost to mobility in our region, it will also create needed jobs. We are proud that the link between downtown Los Angeles and Anaheim is one of the first legs of the proposed state-wide project."
“In order to secure an early economic recovery, businesses must grow, create jobs and hire workers,” said Lucy Dunn, President and CEO, Orange County Business Council. “Business success requires moving people and goods efficiently and effectively. When this mobility is assured, business thrives—when business thrives, the state thrives. Mobility 21 and its annual summit bring the best and brightest together to highlight the issues and solutions for all things transportation.”
“Now more than ever, Southern California must speak with a unified voice when it comes to transportation,” said Gary Toebben, President & CEO, Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce. “The L.A. Area Chamber is proud to work with Mobility 21 and all its partners in securing needed investments for critical transportation projects across our region.”
The Mobility 21 “IMBY” List includes 21 projects aiming to improve rail safety, reduce congestion, move more people, move goods faster, and create the transit system of the 21st century. The Mobility 21 “IMBY” List, including descriptions of all projects, is available at www.mobility21.com.
The Southern California Transportation Summit was held at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel in downtown Los Angeles and is presented by: Automobile Club of Southern California; the Greater Riverside Chambers of Commerce; the Inland Empire Economic Partnership; Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce; Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority; Orange County Business Council; Orange County Transportation Authority; Riverside County Transportation Commission; San Bernardino Associated Governments; Southern California Association of Governments; Ventura County Federated Chambers of Commerce and the Ventura County Transportation Commission.
*The Mobility 21 “IMBY” List provides examples of projects within the $625 billion infrastructure transportation needs plan to improve mobility throughout Southern California and is not inclusive of all projects advocated by the Mobility 21 Coalition and its partners.