By Jackie Wang/Rivard Report
San Antonio must avoid Austin’s mistake of putting off combating traffic congestion and address transit issues now, a California-based transportation expert said at a Tuesday panel on the future of mobility.
Jeffrey Tumlin, a principal and director of strategy at Nelson/Nygaard, a San Francisco-based consulting firm that works with municipalities to solve transportation issues, has worked in cities all over the world, including in Dallas and Austin.
On Tuesday, he joined VIA Metropolitan Transit President and CEO Jeff Arndt, Mayor Ron Nirenberg’s Chief of Policy Marisa Bono, and Bexar County Commissioner Kevin Wolff (Pct. 3) at the Urban Land Institute’s luncheon at the Pearl Stable.
Austin’s mounting congestion is forcing officials to make difficult choices to increase mobility, such as dedicating lanes on major streets to buses. That’s a tough idea to sell to people whose only option currently is to commute via car, Tumlin said. “[San Antonio] is growing rapidly and has a little more flexibility in its mobility system,” Tumlin said. “But that means now is the best time for San Antonio to make those difficult choices. Austin waited too long.