On Friday, May 26th, the EJ Program hosted a walking tour together with Jasmine Leek, Founder of Third City Coalition.
When it comes to getting around, we know that Transportation Equity and Health issues go beyond boundary lines.
Last month the EJ Team went on a Transportation Advocacy day, requesting legislators to support bills that would provide things like cleaner air and bus passes for students. Senator Pan (representing the 6th Senate District, which encompasses parts of Sacramento and Yolo counties) staffer, Marlon Lara, was interested in learning more. So we invited him to see what best practices Stockton has to offer. We invited our Senator Galgiani, as well as our Assemblywoman Susan Eggman. Jasmine Leek, founder of Third City Coalition, provided invaluable assistance in the planning and implementing of the tour.
Our first stop was San Joaquin’s Regional Transit District Center. There we met with bus driver Bob Laird, and RTD’s Nate Knodt, Director of Planning. Senator Galgiani’s staffer, Marian Norris joined us, providing an inside look of the 5th Senate District, which encompasses San Joaquin County, and portions of Stanislaus and Sacramento counties. We heard great information on updates such as electric buses and bus mobile apps.
We then walked over to the San Joaquin County Council of Governments, where we met with Senior Regional Planners Ryan Cordero Niblock and Rob Cunningham, Associate Regional Planner David Ripperda, Assistant Regional Planners Melody Lin and Christina Corrales. We heard highlights on such items as the Regional Transportation Plan and Sustainable Communities Strategy, as well as what Unmet Transit Needs exist.
Finally, we stopped at the San Joaquin Street Train Station, and spoke with Chris Kay, Manager of Outreach and Marketing who spoke about the Ace and Amtrak trains, their history, and the need for expansion to accommodate commuters whose jobs are in cities up and down the Valley, as well as beyond it.
Transportation has no boarders, and neither does the effects of climate change. When leaders who represent people suffering from the consequences of unhealthy air, or who cannot get from one place to another, get together, relationships get built and ideas get heard. Agreements may not always happen, but that shouldn’t stop us from moving forward where we can, and from continuing to build relationships and better our communities.
Thank you to everyone who was part of the tour, from planning to presenting!