On August 29, 2010, Move Colorado hosted the Multi Modal Roundtable, to track new and on-going transit initiatives and chart the future – what needs to get accomplished to keep Colorado’s “multi modal agenda” moving forward? Panelists were Phil Washington of RTD, Harry Dale of the Rocky Mountain Rail Alliance, Jennifer Finch of CDOT, and Jennifer Schaufele of DRCOG. Panel co-conveners were Elena Wilken of CASTA and Rick Pilgrim of Move Colorado. Four main themes emerged, primarily in response to funding issues:

Regionalism: The Denver Metro area already enjoys a reputation as a well-coordinated region among federal interests in Washington, D. C., and there was strong agreement that Colorado must leverage this reputation in order to compete for federal funding. Further, regionalism must expand to our western neighboring states if the desire to build a high speed rail network is to be realized.

Implement and Complete Current Initiatives: FasTracks and FASTER programs must be carried out successfully in order to protect future programming and funding opportunities. The new Division of Transit and Rail within CDOT must complete a statewide rail plan and the high speed rail connectivity study in order for Colorado to compete for federal rail funding in the future. Noting that there are 6 strategic “7th Pot” projects that are still unfunded, the State must preserve and make the best use of existing resources.

Collaboration: Transportation must collaborate with non-traditional partners in housing and the environment in the pursuit of federal grants. The emphasis must be on building sustainable communities by incorporating workforce and economic development efforts. Governments, private businesses and non-profit interests will be required to work together so that different finance programs are coordinated and not splintered by competition.

Marketing and Communication: Colorado must present a unified front and voice in selling the vision for sustainable metropolitan regions and livable communities. Not only must this be done for federal interests in Washington, but also to build awareness and understanding among Colorado citizens about how the infrastructure that supports our daily lives is financed and delivered. Colorado must presentitself as a well-coordinated, common ground
entity in order to be competitive with larger, more populous states.

Actions to address these themes will be considered as part of the Move Colorado strategic plan to fund a multi-modal transportation system. The 3-5 year Strategic Plan will address the need to increase funding for transportation in Colorado by $1.5 Billion annually. This will require a statewide ballot measure, regional and local financing initiatives.