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Cincinnati Chamber Offers Vision For Transportation Future

Michael Keating

The Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber is rolling out a vision to make it easier to get to work, school, health care, and where you need to be."The Connected Region" includes five action principles that will guide a coalition of business and civic leaders. They are:

  1. Invest in the future of public transit
  2. Improve and maintain our infrastructure
  3. Drive innovation and future-oriented investments and projects
  4. Provide people with transportation choices that fit their needs
  5. Align regional decision-makers toward the vision

"It's critical that business leaders collaborate to bring this vision to reality, says Chamber CEO Jill Meyer. "A connected region connects businesses to the workers they need, driving our economy, growing our businesses and making for more robust bottom lines."

The coalition is starting its work by focusing on data and establishing partnerships. It notes that "too few of our region's jobs are connected by a 90-minute (or less) public transit commute."

"We want more jobs accessible within a smaller commute," Meyer says.

Roads and bridges throughout the region need new investment, too. "We must increase the reliable transportation options so everyone can access all that we have to offer," reads a bullet point on TheConnectedRegion.com.

"We looked closely at many of our peer cities and found that the most successful regions have a clearly defined vision and a broad and diverse set of stakeholders working to make that vision a reality," Meyer says.

The coalition says there won't be one solution that works for everyone, rather communities may have different transportation needs and challenges. Meyer says that means some neighborhoods may need sidewalks, others might need bike lanes, and still others may require improved access to public transportation.

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Tana Weingartner earned a bachelor's degree in communication from the University of Cincinnati and a master's degree in mass communication from Miami University. Most recently, she served as news and public affairs producer with WMUB-FM. Ms. Weingartner has earned numerous awards for her reporting, including several Best Reporter awards from the Associated Press and the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists, and a regional Murrow Award. She served on the Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters Board of Directors from 2007 - 2009.