RTC Gathers Expert Panel for Exploration of MAP-21

Posted 07/18/12 by Rails-to-Trails Conservancy in Policy

As a national leader of the active transportation movement, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is well-placed to help trails, walking and bicycling advocates across the country understand what the new Transportation Bill means for projects and plans in their communities.

To that end, yesterday we hosted the first of two webinars exploring the nuts and bolts of this legislation, MAP-21, and offering advice for local practitioners on how to encourage their state to make good use of the limited pot of funds available for trails, biking and walking.

Your response made it obvious that there is a huge amount of interest in the MAP-21 repercussions for active transportation. More than 200 people took part in the interactive webinar, which featured Beth Osborne, deputy assistant secretary for the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), RTC's own policy and trail development VP, Kevin Mills, and David Tyahla, the senior manager of government affairs for the National Recreation and Park Association.

We promised to stay on the line until all your questions were answered, and almost two hours later there were still more than 140 people tuned in to hear the experts' take on issues such as whether state agencies will still manage most Recreational Trails projects, who can apply for funding under the new Transportation Alternatives (TA) category, and the fate of USDOT's very popular TIGER program.

If you missed out on the webinar, never fear. A recording of the event will be posted at www.railstotrails.org very shortly.

We will also be hosting a second webinar on what MAP-21 means for trails, biking and walking, this one geared toward implementers--state and local officials who will be responsible for apportioning TA funds and managing projects. This webinar will be held Tuesday, July 31, at 1 p.m., and will feature Tracy Hadden Loh, research manager for RTC and director of the National Transportation Enhancement Clearinghouse, and Christopher Douwes, Trails and Enhancements Program Manager for the Federal Highway Administration.

Register for that webinar at www.railstotrails.org/map21webinar

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