This Oakland-based nonprofit is all about Transportation. Founded in 1997, TransForm is first and foremost an advocacy group that sees transportation in city planning as the key to creating thriving communities. By focusing on public transportation, biking and city walkability, land use and affordable housing they address the problems of climate change and social equity. TransForm works with political stakeholders to craft policies but also engages the people living in different communities in their planning and research process.
Locally and in Sacramento, they advocate policies, as well as create their own initiatives and programs that they believe will benefit the community. For instance, they structured GreenTRIP or the Green Traffic Reduction and Innovative Parking certification program to assist cities and developers in making equitable transit solutions for the community like free transit passes and car sharing programs. Now, families living in select apartment complexes save thousands with programs like transit passes.
Their team of policy experts and community guest bloggers churn out articles almost every week that cover current events and future innovations within transit. The blog posts are often short but give a vivid snapshot into the local issues. For instance, a guest post published in on December 3rd, 2015 discussed the routine elevator problem at most BART stations and how it affected access for disabled riders. The author spoke with BART technicians on site who pointed to BART’s outdated infrastructure as the culprit to the reoccurring elevator issues.
On their website there is a ‘GET INVOLVED’ tab that leads users to a list of policies supported by the organization and instructions on how any citizen can volunteer their time to the cause. You also have a chance to view upcoming bay area events which are relevant to transportation policy. The events are a mix of TransForm sponsored events, city organized and others. In their South Bay contingent, the non-profit supported students at De Anza Community College to organize for better transportation access to their school. The next generation of ‘transit activists’ will hopefully be supported with these types of programs to push for the greater bus service to the commuting students.
TransForm has been working hard to make better neighborhoods and to keep people moving. It is a Bay Area non-profit that is definitely worth checking out.