For many years AMPO has hosted and managed the Air Quality Work Group, with funding and technical support provided by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). It offered a mechanism for MPO engagement, communications, outreach and capacity building in addressing air quality and climate change issues, policies, emphasis areas, guidance and regulations, and state-of-the-practice analytic tools and techniques.
With the conclusion of that funding AMPO has dedicated an ongoing working group to continue this conversation, broadening the group for Air Quality to Environment and Resiliency to better address the needs of the community and requirements under the newest transportation bill.
The objectives of the interest group include:
- Providing a forum for metropolitan transportation planning practitioners to identify policy and technical research, training and technical support needs;
- Continued building of MPO technical capacity through peer-to-peer sharing, documentation and dissemination of innovative tools and planning practices;
- Continued collaboration with FHWA to address issues, strategies, policies and tools leading to better health, environmental, social and economic outcomes in the context of transportation and air quality and climate change;
- Continued advances in the state-of-the-practice through an ongoing forum and community of practice to share information and ideas on innovative tools, processes and investment decision making strategies that yield positive environmental, air quality and climate change outcomes.
Joe is a Senior GIS Specialist at Metro (Portland, Oregon) that specializes in demographic and remote sensing analysis. He has done work on equity and environmental justice analyses, including indicator development, social vulnerability indices, environmental vulnerabilities (e.g., flood, urban heat), and hazard preparedness. A recent project that he has managed, in partnership with the Regional Disaster Preparedness Organization, is the Social Vulnerability Tools project: https://rdpo.net/social-vulnerability-tools-project.
Russell has been with CMAP (the MPO for the Chicago area) for over 20 years. He’s currently a Senior Analyst whose primary responsibilities are the project manager for CMAP’s transportation conformity process, including emissions modeling and for the active program management process for projects in the TIP. As the program manager for the conformity process at CMAP he’s responsible for leading CMAP’s efforts for the consultation process, emissions modeling, regulatory and policy monitoring and development, and in ensuring that the requirements associated with the conformity process and transportation planning process are understood and adhered to.
Jason has over 30 years of experience in the road industry having worked for the Maryland State Highway Administration, Michigan Department of Transportation and as the first Director of the Berrien County Road Department. He is known for his ability to collaborate and find innovative ways to solve difficult transportation challenges. He has ten years of experience working with NEPA and environmental compliance. He has over 15 years of experience working for Michigan DOT as a Region Planner and Public Outreach specialist. He is familiar with MDOT’s transportation planning process and the project development process used by County Road Commissions. He believes infrastructure improvements that support all users create a sense of Place that is the backbone of vibrant communities.
Chad Parasa has more than 20 years of MPO Transportation planning experience in the public sector, and he has 5 years of consulting work experience in the private sector, in the areas of Traffic Engineering. Chad has a graduate degree in Civil Engineering, major in Transportation Engineering, from the University of Oklahoma. Chad also obtained his Master degree in Mathematics, from Fairfield University, Connecticut.Chad has a passion for public service, and he believes that many choices of transportation modes of public, develop into a transportation system. The transportation system becomes an integral part and a foundation for economic development. Thus there are so many areas to serve the public’s interests in a multi-modal transportation system. One of the ways to serve the public is by serving elected officials because they represent the public and strive for the larger good of the public. Chad believes that MPO (Metropolitan Planning Organization) is a great place for collaboration by bringing together various agencies such as local jurisdictions, regional leaders and stakeholders, state agencies, as well as federal agencies.