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106 A P P E N D I X B Interview Summaries The research team conducted interviews with representatives from the following eight transit agencies: â¢ Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LA Metro), â¢ TransLink, â¢ Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA), â¢ Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA), â¢ Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority, â¢ Transit Authority of River City (TARC), â¢ ChampaignâUrbana Mass Transit District, and â¢ Rogue Valley Transportation District (RVTD). Six interviews were conducted in-person during the 2018 APTA Sustainability and Multi-Modal Planning Workshop and two interviews were conducted over the phone. The research team asked 13 questions related to performance measurement. Interview Questions Priorities 1. What are the social and economic sustainability priorities of your transit agency? 2. Has your transit agency established goals and/or objectives related to social and economic sustainability? 3. How do your transit agencyâs social and economic sustainability priorities align with the jurisdictions you serve (city, county, or region)? 4. What process is used to establish social and economic sustainability priorities at your transit agency? Who are the main stakeholders? How often is the process revisited? Measuring Performance 1. Does your transit agency currently track performance measures (can you please send us a list)? Are any of the measures specifically related to social or economic sustainability? 2. What have been the biggest benefits to your social and economic sustainability performance measurement program? What feedback have you received? 3. What data do you collect to inform the social and economic sustainability measures? 4. How do you collect the social and economic sustainability data?
Interview Summaries 107 7. What is your transit agencyâs approach to social and economic performance measures that fall outside of your direct control, but involve a transit component (e.g., increasing transit- oriented development, reducing system-wide congestion)? 8. Are you developing relationships with local or regional stakeholders to consider broader measures? Research Product and Results 1. What do you expect to see when our work is complete? What would be most useful to your agency? Interview Summaries The following section includes high-level summaries of the interviews that were conducted in support of this research. Four items were generally discussed in these interviews, including: â¢ Formal social and economic goals. In many cases, social and economic outcomes were an internal agency priority but not explicitly captured in planning documents or formal initiatives. Mission statements and goals related to economic and social outcomes have been highlighted from the interviews. â¢ Performance measurement. Interviews and supporting materials were used to identify the transit agencyâs current approach to performance measurement, and whether that approach explicitly considered social and economic outcomes in performance measurement. â¢ Highlighted projects and programs that support social and economic outcomes. Almost all of the interviewees were quick to highlight projects and programs with a focus on social and economic outcomes. This was not a focus of the interview, but is illustrative of some of the challenges of translating important social and economic initiatives into a regularly tracked performance measure. Note that the lists provided in this appendix are not exhaustive, but they are included to indicate some of the most recent and noteworthy activities currently underway at the transit agencies interviewed. â¢ Highlighted data collection tools. Many of the interviewees described data tools that were particularly helpful in tracking social and economic performance. These data collection tools have been presented in this appendix for reference. The following sections provide summaries of each interview by agency. 5. What are the main obstacles your agency has faced with regard to either collecting data, measuring social and economic sustainability performance or achieving social and economic performance measures? 6. Have you ever dropped a social or economic measure? If so, why?
108 Social and Economic Sustainability Performance Measures for Public Transportation: Final Guidance Document agency has established eight critical success factors, several of which relate to social and economic sustainability, but no formal goals have been established. Performance Measurement TARC currently tracks standard operational metrics only. Performance measures that focus on social and economic outcomes, where they exist, are not identified as such. The agency has struggled to measure the success of social and economic programs. Highlighted Projects and Programs that Support Social and Economic Outcomes â¢ Free fare during extreme high and low temperatures, â¢ Monthly pass at a reduced rate during summer months, â¢ Reduced fares for students to improve retention rates at a local technical school, â¢ Financial incentives to workforce for successful completion of attainment tests, â¢ Designating buses as âSafe Placesâ where abused children and women can seek help, â¢ Employee wellness initiatives, â¢ Donating vans and mechanical services to non-profits and colleges to supplement transit service (particularly where it is cost prohibitive for the transit agency to provide service), and â¢ Employee wellness. Highlighted Data Collection Tools Most of the agencyâs social and economic data is tracked using surveys. The main surveys include paratransit surveys, onboard surveys, and household surveys. Employee surveys generally are not conducted. Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) Formal Social and Economic Goals Although the agency supports social and economic initiatives, no formal social and economic goals have been established. Performance Measurement WMATA has developed measures that specifically relate to social and economic sustainability (see the Social and Economic Performance Measures Database). The metrics collected include health, equity, and community impacts, but these generally are not framed as social and economic measures. Transit Authority of River City (TARC) Formal Social and Economic Goals TARCâs mission statement is âTo explore and implement transportation opportunities that enhance the social, economic, and environmental well-being of the greater Louisville community.â2 The 2 See https://www.ridetarc.org/about/mission.
Interview Summaries 109 Highlighted Projects and Programs that Support Social and Economic Outcomes â¢ An award-winning3 Public Participation Plan,4 â¢ Studies on the economic benefits of transit,5 and â¢ Developing walkability scores for every station. Highlighted Data Collection Tools Data is collected by a variety of groups within WMATA. A Performance Office is responsible for much of the data collection and aggregation. Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) Formal Social and Economic Goals SEPTAâs Sustainability Program Plan identifies eight goals that support social and economic outcomes, focusing primarily on healthy communities and workforce and economic vitality:6 Healthy Communities and Workforce â¢ Integrate with livable communities; â¢ Improve access to local food via transit; â¢ Develop a highly skilled, healthy, and versatile workforce; and â¢ Support regional business equity. Economic Vitality â¢ Increase ridership; â¢ Improve operating expense performance; â¢ Institutionalize environmental practices; and â¢ Financial value of sustainability. Performance Measurement SEPTA is currently tracking progress toward achieving the goals identified in the agencyâs Sustainability Program Plan. For more information, see the Social and Economic Performance Measures Database. Highlighted Projects and Programs that Support Social and Economic Outcomes 3 For information on the American Planning Associationâs 2014 Award for Distinction in Community Outreach and Engagement, see: https://planitmetro.com/2014/12/03/metros-public-participation-plan-wins-planning-award/. 4 For WMATAâs 2014-2017 Public Participation Plan, see: https://planitmetro.com/wp- content/uploads/2014/10/2014_WMATA_TVI_PROGRAM_Appendix_F_-_Public_Participation_Plan1.pdf. 5 See https://ssti.us/wp/wp- content/uploads/2012/01/WMATA%20Making%20the%20Case%20for%20Transit%20Final%20Report.pdf. 6 See https://www.septa.org/sustain/pdf/Sustainability2020_report.pdf.
110 Social and Economic Sustainability Performance Measures for Public Transportation: Final Guidance Document â¢ Developing a highly skilled, healthy, versatile, and sustainable workforce through a 5-year human resources management plan; â¢ Coordinating with the City of Philadelphia to develop innovative programs to address stormwater control; â¢ A report on cycle-transit integration; â¢ Participating in a bicycle and pedestrian access planning group in Montgomery County; â¢ Hosting farmersâ markets on agency-owned property; â¢ The Hub of Hope: a facility located at one of SEPTAâs largest regional stations that provides services to individuals struggling with homelessness (a cooperative effort between the City of Philadelphia and the non-profit Project HOME);7 and â¢ Revenue-neutral sustainability program (and analysis to support the business case for specific initiatives). Highlighted Data Collection Tools Social and economic data generally are tracked within different departments. A key challenge is moving relevant information to a centralized location. TransLink Formal Social and Economic Goals TransLinkâs three corporate priorities for 2018 are:8 1. Improve customer experience and public support with our customer-first approach, building trust and confidence in TransLink by focusing on growing ridership, engaging our stakeholders, and delivering the Mayorsâ 10-Year Vision. 2. Ensure a state of good repair by proactively managing and maintaining all assets to improve reliability, optimize lifecycle costs, and enhance the customer experience. 3. Continue to mobilize the Mayorsâ Vision to deliver the capital projects, service expansion, and policy initiatives identified in the Mayorsâ 10-Year Vision. Performance Measurement TransLink has integrated social and economic performance measurement in accordance with the GRIâs G4 Framework. The agency has an extensive performance management program with more than 140 measures, many of which explicitly focus on social and economic outcomes. Not all of the performance measures that the agency tracks are published, but they are used to direct internal operations. The agency hopes to transition from measuring performance to setting targets in the near term. 7 See https://projecthome.org/hubofhope. 8 See https://view.publitas.com/translink/translink_2017_accountability_report/page/1.
Interview Summaries 111 Highlighted Projects and Programs that Support Social and Economic Outcomes â¢ Public perception of safety at stations and on the Skytrain; â¢ Crime, graffiti, and employee indicators; â¢ Integrating performance management framework with GRI, APTA, CUTA, and the UN Sustainable Development Goals; â¢ Monitoring and benchmarking employee satisfaction relative to other transit agencies; and â¢ TransLink has a shared metric with the City of Vancouver related to mode share and mode shift, with a target for half of all trips by 2040 be made either by walking, biking, or transit. Highlighted Data Collection Tools A third party conducts a quarterly survey on satisfaction. TransLink also conducts employee engagement surveys. The agency uses listening panels that include a variety of transit users and is representative of the entire region. Every 5 years, TransLink conducts a âTrip Diaryâ survey of travel habits.9 ChampaignâUrbana Mass Transit District Formal Social and Economic Goals The agencyâs social and economic priorities are focused around customer satisfaction and on-time performance. Performance Measurement The agency currently tracks standard operational metrics only. Performance measures that focus on social and economic outcomes, where they exist, are not identified as such. In general, initiatives that focus on economic and social sustainability are more qualitative. Highlighted Projects and Programs that Support Social and Economic Outcomes â¢ ISO 9001 certification, which includes a strong customer focus and quality management principles;10 â¢ Monitoring the lifespan of the batteries on buses; and â¢ ChampaignâUrbana Mass Multimodal Corridor Enhancement, a capital improvement project born out of partnership between the transit agency and the University of Illinois to construct Complete Street corridors between the Cities of Champaign and Urbana to the University of Illinois. Note that the project is funded in part by a TIGER [Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery]grant.11 Highlighted Data Collection Tools The agency does not currently track performance measures focused on social and economic outcomes. 9 See https://www.translink.ca/Plans-and-Projects/Transportation-Surveys/Trip-Diary-Survey.aspx 10 See https://www.iso.org/iso-9001-quality-management.html 11 See https://www.mcoreproject.com/tiger-grant-application.html
112 Social and Economic Sustainability Performance Measures for Public Transportation: Final Guidance Document Rogue Valley Transportation District (RVTD) Formal Social and Economic Goals RVTD is in the process of preparing a new master plan. Draft goals related to social and economic sustainability include: â¢ Goal I: Community: Connect the region, focusing on increasing equitable access to transportation and improving quality of life. â¢ Goal II: Coordination: Coordinate closely with regional partners, within RVTD, and with the public to ensure efficient delivery of high-quality services integrated with other modes and supportive land uses. (This goal might be dropped because unsure of how to measure stakeholder support, or it may be combined with others.) â¢ Goal III: Economy: Maintain RVTDâs financial stability and provide convenient and reliable service that supports the local economy. Performance Measurement The agency has established draft metrics (included in the Social and Economic Performance Measures Database) that will be tracked as part of the agencyâs long-term plan, and it has tracked metrics since their 10-year transit plan was prepared in 2007. The agency found that they were unable to measure some of the metrics defined in 2007 because the agency did not have the data required. During the current update, the agency is carefully identifying which data is required and whether the agency has access to the data. Highlighted Projects and Programs that Support Social and Economic Outcomes â¢ Bus stop assessment to survey available bus stop amenities, â¢ Participation in technical advisory committees for the jurisdictions served, â¢ Development of a bicycle/pedestrian plan, â¢ Identification of deficiencies in sidewalks where new service is planned, and â¢ Work with the County housing authority to prioritize service enhancements in areas with new low-income developments. Highlighted Data Collection Tools RVTD uses the TBEST model (Transit Boardings Estimation and Simulation Tool) developed by the Florida Department of Transportation. TBEST is a GIS-based modeling tool that integrates socioeconomic, land use, and transit network data for scenario-based transit ridership estimation and analysis.12 LA Metro Formal Social and Economic Goals LA Metro addresses social and economic goals in several outward-facing initiatives, including the agencyâs Long-Range Transportation Plan, Climate Action Plan, and a newly established 12 See https://tbest.org/
Interview Summaries 113 Sustainability Council. The agency CEOâs core business goals also include several objectives related to social and economic sustainability:13 â¢ Goal 1: Advance safety and security for our customers, the public and Metro employees; â¢ Goal 2: Exercise fiscal discipline to ensure financial stability; â¢ Goal 3: Plan and deliver capital projects on time and on budget while increasing opportunities for small business development and innovation; â¢ Goal 4: Improve the customer experience and expand access to transportation options; â¢ Goal 5: Increase transit use and ridership; â¢ Goal 6: Implement an industry-leading state of good repair program; â¢ Goal 7: Invest in workforce development; and â¢ Goal 8: Promote extraordinary innovation. Performance Measurement LA Metro does track metrics related to social and economic metrics, but they are not referred to as social and economic metrics. LA Metro has developed a Resiliency Indicator Framework14 that includes metrics and a Quality of Life Report that illustrates how LA Metro benefits the region. The agency also adopted seven adaptation metrics,15 but they are primarily formatted as âYes/Noâ questions. Highlighted Projects and Programs that Support Social and Economic Outcomes â¢ Quality of Life Report describing the impact LA Metro has had on quality of life in LA County;16 â¢ Beginning a program to train 1,500 employees in Envision, Green Building or Building Resilience (which addresses environmental topics);17 â¢ Establishment of a âgreen fundâ financed by carbon credits, grants, and other alternative financing to be spent on new initiatives; â¢ Adopting adaptation metrics focused on climate adaptation, vulnerability assessments, and mitigating impacts from extreme weather events;18 â¢ Hosting farmersâ markets on transit agency property; and â¢ Aligning social and economic priorities with the region, the ASCE, and APTA. Highlighted Data Collection Tools No data collection tools were highlighted during the interview. 13 See https://www.metro.net/about/agency/mission/. 14 See http://media.metro.net/projects_studies/sustainability/images/resiliency_indicator_framework.pdf. 15 See https://www.apta.com/previousmc/sustainability/presentations/Presentations/Perspectives%20from%20the %20Federal%20Transit%20Administration%20-%20Climate%20Change%20Adaptation%20and%20Resiliency.pptx. 16 See https://media.metro.net/docs/report_qualityoflife.pdf. 17 See https://www.asce.org/envision/. 18 See https://www.apta.com/mc/sustainability/previous/2016sustainability/presentations/Presentations/ Resiliency%20at%20LA%20Metro.ppt.