Transportation Reform Funders Group
The Future of Regions and Communities
Decisions about land use policies and practices have profound and long-term impacts on neighborhoods, communities, states, and regions and the people who live there. Public transportation dollars are among the most significant and substantive government investments. Yet very few grantmakers consider themselves to be "land use" or "transportation" funders. Given the leverage point that affecting transportation investments and decisions offers for advancing positive impacts on a variety of issues, more and more funders are working in this realm. The Funders’ Network dedicates attention to transportation policies and practices, recognizing that improving and refor ming transportation policy could deliver substantial returns for the environmental, economic, and social health of neighborhoods and their residents.
In early 2008, the Network reinvigorated the Transportation Reform Funders Group (TRFG) for funders interested in understanding and advancing the promise of transportation reform and engaging a range of grantmakers in efforts to improve policy and practice. Participants in the TRFG including a range of local, regional, and national funders and funders concerned with climate change, economic development, equity and opportunity, health, and other issues that stand to benefit from improving how decisions about transportation investments are made—and the decisions themselves.
Federal Action and Campaigns
Acting on Immediate Needs and Opportunities
State and Regional Action and Resources
Investing in the Long Term
Implementation of federal reform occurs at two levels: the state level, in Departments of Transportation (for transportation); and regional and community levels, in Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) and Planning Departments (for land use). By highlighting model efforts of funders working collaboratively around policy and practice reform in locales—with their grantees—the TRFG hopes to provide the opportunity for others to understand points of entry and benefits of engaging in such multi-faceted work. For example, Smart Growth California is an endeavor designed to support funder collaboration and inform implementation of the state’s landmark legislation requiring the transportation and land use sectors to mitigate impacts on climate change—and prove it.
Leadership and guidance for TRFG is provided by: Helen Chin, Surdna Foundation; Don Chen, The Ford Foundation; Lee Sheehy, The McKnight Foundation; Amy Solomon, The Bullitt Foundation; and Nick Turner, The Rockefeller Foundation.