RTAC Letterhead


Draft Memorandum for the Record

Regional Transportation Advisory Council Meeting

July 14, 2021, Meeting Minutes

2:30 PM–4:00 PM, Zoom

Lenard Diggins, Chair, representing the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) Ridership Oversight Committee

Meeting Agenda

1.    Introductions

Lenard Diggins called the meeting to order at 2:30 PM. Members and guests attending the meeting introduced themselves. (For attendance list, see page four.)

2.    MetroCommon 2050 and the Long-Range Transportation Plan (LRTP)—Emily Torres-Cullinane, Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC), and Anne McGahan, MPO Staff

Emily Torres-Cullinane, MAPC, explained that MetroCommon 2050 is a public policy plan being developed by MAPC that offers a vision and practical steps toward a more equitable and resilient future for the Boston region. She listed five action areas addressed by the plan:

·       Equity of wealth and health

·       Homes for all

·       Inclusive growth and mobility

·       Climate mitigation and resiliency

·       Dynamic and representative government

E. Torres-Cullinane focused on several goals of MetroCommon 2050 connected to the “Inclusive growth and mobility” action area; she also highlighted two of the plan’s many policy recommendations related to mobility:

·       Improve accessibility and regional connectivity

·       Reduce the need for single-occupant vehicle travel with transit-oriented development and walkable centers

A. McGahan discussed how MetroCommon 2050 will figure in the development of the next LRTP, Destination 2050, by the Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). She said the MPO is developing a new web page for the next LRTP (ctps.org/destination2050/).


AnaCristina Fragoso, Boston Society of Civil Engineers; John McQueen, WalkBoston; Sarah Lee, MAPC staff; and E. Torres-Cullinane discussed whether the recommendations in MetroCommon 2050 around resiliency and smart growth were now redundant with the MBTA’s latest plans and efforts. They also discussed proposals for needs-based fares.

John Strauss, Town of Burlington, and S. Lee discussed the integration of payment methods, which would enable riders to pay bus fares on both MBTA- and regional transit authority-administered bus routes with the same card.

J. McQueen and A. McGahan discussed aspects of the MPO’s December 2019 memorandum “The Future of the Curb,” which examines the ways in which cities are addressing increasing and changing demands for use of the curb lane.

Jen Rowe, City of Boston, L. Diggins, and E. Torres-Cullinane discussed how the MAPC plans to push forward implementation of the recommendations outlined in MetroCommon 2050.

3.    Destination 2040 Needs Assessment Discussion—L. Diggins, Chair

L. Diggins discussed Chapter 9, Economic Vitality Needs, of Destination 2040, the Needs Assessment for the current Boston region LRTP. L. Diggins discussed how plans to transform transportation are interconnected with investments in economic vitality and housing.


A. Reker, J. McQueen, and A. McGahan discussed whether additional attention should be given to three COVID-19-specific topics in this year’s update to the LRTP:

·       Impacts on the labor markets of hospitality and other service industries

·       Increasing home delivery services

·       Increasing remote work

4.    Chair’s Report—Lenard Diggins, Chair

L. Diggins discussed the recent meetings of the Transportation Improvement Program Project Costs Ad Hoc Committee. L. Diggins said he initially supported having the MPO help municipalities with design work; however, it became clear that this could result in the municipalities being required to repay funds spent on design work for projects that were later cancelled.

5.    3C Documents Committee—Chris Porter, Chair, 3C Documents Committee

L. Diggins and M. Archer discussed the need for a new committee chair, with the departure of Chris Porter, as well as more committee members. The committee agreed to meet next on July 23.


A. Reker agreed to participate on the committee.

6.    Old Business, New Business, and Member Announcements

A. Reker discussed the Cambridge Cycling Safety Ordinance (CSO) that requires the creation of almost 25 miles of separated bike lanes on many major streets according to a five- to seven-year timeline. He mentioned the City of Cambridge CSO web page as a good source of information surrounding this effort.

J. Rowe announced that, going forward, she plans to attend Advisory Council meetings on behalf of the City of Boston.

7.    Adjourn 

A motion to adjourn was made by the Boston Society of Civil Engineers (AnaCristina Fragoso) and seconded by WalkBoston (J. McQueen). The motion carried.



Member Municipalities

Representatives and Alternates

City of Cambridge

Andy Reker

Town of Weymouth

Owen MacDonald


Member Citizen Advocacy Groups

Representatives and Alternates

MBTA Ridership Oversight Committee (ROC)

Lenard Diggins

National Rural Transit Assistance Program

Scott Zadakis

American Council of Engineering Companies

Fred Moseley

Boston Society of Civil Engineers (BSCES)

AnaCristina Fragoso


Jon Seward


John McQueen


Agencies (Non-Voting)


Metropolitan Area Planning Council

Emily Torres-Cullinane

Metropolitan Area Planning Council

Sarah Lee


Other Attendees


Jen Rowe

City of Boston

John Strauss

Town of Burlington

Laura Wiener

City of Watertown

Barry Steinberg

Association for Public Transportation

Aleida Leza



MPO Staff/Central Transportation Planning Staff

Matt Archer

Anne McGahan

Katherine White


The Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) operates its programs, services, and activities in compliance with federal nondiscrimination laws including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VI), the Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1987, and related statutes and regulations. Title VI prohibits discrimination in federally assisted programs and requires that no person in the United States of America shall, on the grounds of race, color, or national origin (including limited English proficiency), be excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or be otherwise subjected to discrimination under any program or activity that receives federal assistance. Related federal nondiscrimination laws administered by the Federal Highway Administration, Federal Transit Administration, or both, prohibit discrimination on the basis of age, sex, and disability. The Boston Region MPO considers these protected populations in its Title VI Programs, consistent with federal interpretation and administration. In addition, the Boston Region MPO provides meaningful access to its programs, services, and activities to individuals with limited English proficiency, in compliance with U.S. Department of Transportation policy and guidance on federal Executive Order 13166.

The Boston Region MPO also complies with the Massachusetts Public Accommodation Law, M.G.L. c 272 sections 92a, 98, 98a, which prohibits making any distinction, discrimination, or restriction in admission to, or treatment in a place of public accommodation based on race, color, religious creed, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, disability, or ancestry. Likewise, the Boston Region MPO complies with the Governor's Executive Order 526, section 4, which requires that all programs, activities, and services provided, performed, licensed, chartered, funded, regulated, or contracted for by the state shall be conducted without unlawful discrimination based on race, color, age, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, religion, creed, ancestry, national origin, disability, veteran's status (including Vietnam-era veterans), or background.

A complaint form and additional information can be obtained by contacting the MPO or at http://www.bostonmpo.org/mpo_non_discrimination. To request this information in a different language or in an accessible format, please contact

Title VI Specialist
Boston Region MPO
10 Park Plaza, Suite 2150
Boston, MA 02116

By Telephone:
857.702.3700 (voice)

For people with hearing or speaking difficulties, connect through the state MassRelay service:

·       Relay Using TTY or Hearing Carry-over: 800.439.2370

·       Relay Using Voice Carry-over: 866.887.6619

·       Relay Using Text to Speech: 866.645.9870

For more information, including numbers for Spanish speakers, visit https://www.mass.gov/massrelay.