Monday, October 11, 2021

New TDM Framework for Portland can Illuminate Our Salem and Climate Action Plan

In advance of thinking more about Our Salem and the Climate Action Plan, today's note at BikePortland, "Portland has a new plan to persuade you to stop driving so much," points not just to a new plan with a new approach to Transportation Demand Management actions and policies, but also a theoretical framework for evaluating our proposals that touch on transportation in Our Salem and the Climate Plan.

"The Way to Go Plan"

The Way to Go Plan discusses nine strategic priority areas.

They write about the inadequacy of a carrots-only approach:

Many transportation demand management programs focus on initiatives that offer information and encouragement for people to try new modes (like transit or biking). While these are important tools, the city cannot reach its ambitious climate, mobility, and equity goals with informational and encouragement programs alone.

To most effectively manage demand for the city’s transportation system, PBOT needs a toolkit of strategies that address the multifaceted nature of human travel behavior, employing strategies that reduce travel demand or redistribute demand in space, in time, or by mode...

A summary of the nine strategies

The top two strategies involve pricing, one with costs, the other with rewards.

Fees, charges, and tolls—designed intentionally and equitably to manage demand—send price signals that help people understand the true costs of driving and encourage non-driving choices when possible. One example of pricing is charging a daily rate for parking your private vehicle.

Especially in tandem with pricing, financial incentives—such as discounted passes, subsidies, and reimbursements—make using travel options more cost-competitive, and can increase motivation to try new ways of getting around.

We will come back to this, to read the plan in more detail, to see how it is received in Portland, to see what revisions might be made before final adoption, and also to consider it as a theoretical framework for evaluating Our Salem and our Climate Action Plan. It could be a fertile prompt for additional analysis and policy action.

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