In November 2021, the US Congress passed the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL), creating the most ambitious federal transportation and infrastructure program in a decade, with major funding streams directed to the New York region. In addition to large regional transportation megaprojects, the expansion of citywide mobility options, and neighborhood streetscape improvements, the infrastructure bill prioritizes transformative projects that help restore communities damaged by past inequitable policies, supports the decarbonization of our transportation networks, and promotes the transition to sustainable energy production.
Drawing on her deep background in shaping federal transportation policy under two presidential administrations, coupled with her leadership as New York City’s Transportation Commissioner, USDOT Deputy Secretary Polly Trottenberg will share her insights in an intimate conversation with Professor Kate Ascher, discussing how the infrastructure bill programs work together to support a more livable, sustainable, and equitable future for New York City
Polly Trottenberg, Deputy Secretary, US Department of Transportation
Kate Ascher, Milstein Professor of Urban Development, Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation
Polly Trottenberg is Deputy Secretary at the US Department of Transportation (USDOT), where she provides leadership and strategic vision as the Department’s Chief Operating Officer. She served from 2014 to 2020 as New York City’s Transportation Commissioner, where she ran a 5,800-person agency responsible for the safe, efficient, and equitable operations of New York City’s transportation network. In New York, Trottenberg helped implement the landmark Vision Zero program, the first in the U.S., and also led the NYC Department of Transportation through COVID-19 response and recovery. Trottenberg served in the Obama Administration as the Assistant Secretary and Under Secretary for Policy at USDOT, where she developed and implemented policies to serve the needs of local and state transportation agencies. Previously, Trottenberg spent 12 years in the US Senate, serving Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Majority Leader Charles Schumer, and Senator Barbara Boxer.
Kate Ascher currently serves as the Milstein Professor of Urban Development at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, where she teaches real estate, infrastructure, and urban planning courses. She also leads a variety of strategic projects involving transportation and other forms of infrastructure on behalf of Buro Happold Engineering’s Cities group, which she established in 2011. Prior to joining Columbia and Buro Happold, she served as Director of Development at Vornado Realty Trust, Executive Vice-President at NYC Economic Development Corporation, and Assistant Director of the Port at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Ascher holds a PhD from the London School of Economics and is the author of several books on urban infrastructure (The Works, The Heights, and The Way to Go), as well as co-author of New York Rising, an illustrated anthology of New York City’s physical evolution.
This event is offered virtually; you will receive an email with a Zoom link to access the program.
AIANY Transportation and Infrastructure Committee