2020 New York In Transit Summit

January 30, 2020  
Museum of Jewish Heritage
36 Battery Pl, New York, NY 10280
9:00AM - 4:00PM
Developing and Enhancing Transportation Systems Throughout New York
Event Description

New York residents rely on its public transportation systems and roads to get everywhere, with varying degrees of success and frustration. Following the release of the MTA's five-year capital plan and the continuation of long-planned expansion projects, New York's systems for moving people and information are poised for a huge makeover. The New York In Transit Summit will bring together experts across sectors to assess the current state of New York's transportation systems, break down recent legislative actions, and look towards the future of all things coming and going in New York.

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Polly Trottenberg
Commissioner, NYC Department of Transportation
Ydanis Rodriguez
Ydanis Rodriguez
Chairman, New York City Council Committee on Transportation
New York City Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez has served as the Chairman of the NYC Council Higher Education Committee and is currently the Chair of the Transportation Committee. As Chairman of the NYC Council Transportation Committee, Council Member Rodriguez has championed many bills, including the passage of dozens of bills to ensure pedestrian and cyclist safety. He has been a key figure in supporting the effort to reduce traffic fatalities and expand transportation options into underserved communities. Some of his specific accomplishments include, supporting the implementation of Vision Zero and further expanding the program to ensure streets are safe by pushing for agendas that implemented civil penalties for hit and run crashes; increasing penalties against illegal street hails; making all acts of motorcycle exhibitionism illegal; leading the effort to lower the speed limit and install slow zones throughout the city; and successfully co-sponsoring legislation to create a local speed camera program that will allow New York City to impose liability on vehicle owners for failure to comply with maximum speed limits in school speed zones. Council Member Rodriguez has allocated millions of dollars to a wide range of initiatives, expanding from infrastructure creation and improvements, to the funding of hundreds of projects and programs, that include: the expansion of Citibike to every neighborhood in the five boroughs, investing over half a million dollars for the expansion of bike networks in Northern Manhattan that will result in the creation of a bike lane network to connect the community. He successfully advocated and supported Fair Fares, a city-run program that will distribute MetroCards to low-income New Yorkers at a reduced rate; and has allocated over $5 million dollars to construct a fully functional ferry dock, and infrastructure for a ferry access to the eco-dock at Dyckman Pier.
Nily Rozic
New York State Assemblywoman
Assemblywoman Nily Rozic represents New York’s 25th District, which spans the Eastern portion of Queens, including the communities of Flushing, Queensboro Hill, Hillcrest, Fresh Meadows, Oakland Gardens, Bayside, and Douglaston. Upon her election in 2012, Assemblywoman Rozic became the youngest woman in the state legislature and the first woman ever to represent the 25th District. Nily serves on the Assembly’s Ways & Means, Labor, Energy, Correction, Corporations, Authorities and Commissions, and Consumer Affairs and Protection Committees. She is the Chair of the State Assembly's Office of State-Federal Relations and a member of the Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic & Asian Legislative Caucus and the Puerto Rican/Hispanic Task Force. In Queens and Albany, Nily is an outspoken advocate for working and middle class families, immigrant communities, and students.
Catherine Rinaldi
President, Metro North Railroad
Ms. Rinaldi is the sixth president of Metro-North Railroad, and the first woman to hold that position. She joined Metro-North in January 2015 as Executive Vice President, and in that role, spearheaded the development of Metro-North’s 2016-2020 Strategic Plan. In October, Ms. Rinaldi unveiled “Way Ahead,” a customer-facing version of the Metro-North Strategic Plan, which sets forth Metro-North’s strategies for setting the standard for safety, reliability and innovation in the delivery of excellent customer service. She is focused on improving the reliability of Metro-North’s service, while at the same time continuing the intensive infrastructure program essential to maintaining the safety of the Metro-North system. She has overseen the implementation of a host of customer-facing initiatives, from the capitally-funded Customer Service Initiative, which will improve the delivery of real-time service information both in Grand Central Terminal and outlying stations, to a multi-million station upgrade at White Plains station, Metro-North’s third busiest station and a major reverse commute destination. On the safety front, she has led efforts to implement positive train control across Metro-North in compliance with federal requirements. Metro-North’s customer facing safety program TRACKS, which stands for Together Railroads and Communities Keeping Safe, won the 2018 APTA Gold Award for Safety. Ms. Rinaldi has implemented a series of efforts to improve employee engagement, and, specifically, the engagement of women in the Metro-North workforce. She created a Lunch and Learn series at Metro-North, and moderated a series of panel discussions regarding women in transportation, designed to create additional networking and professional development opportunities for the women of Metro-North. She also created a quarterly Women’s Book Club, which has provided opportunities for all Metro-North employees to discuss work-life balance, as well as themed events in connection with Women’s History Month and Black History Month. More recently, Ms. Rinaldi has championed the creation of a professional group consisting of women engineers at Metro-North, with a view toward the creation of similar professional groups elsewhere in the railroad. Under her leadership, Metro-North has implemented formal knowledge transfer and succession planning initiatives designed to address problems of retention and attrition experienced not only at Metro-North, but in the railroad industry as a whole. She is actively involved in efforts to build upon existing training programs to ensure that Metro-North’s newest generation of employees have the skills necessary to work safely. She has overseen the creation of focus groups in different departments and at various levels of the organization, to be able to hear from employees throughout Metro-North what they view as their biggest challenges, as well as areas of opportunity. Ms. Rinaldi was honored as the Woman of the Year by the Greater New York Chapter of WTS in 2018. Prior to assuming her position at Metro-North, Ms. Rinaldi served as Chief of Staff and Counsel to the Chairman at MTA from 2011 through 2014. In that capacity, she served as a senior adviser to MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota during his initial term at MTA HQ and subsequently to former MTA Chairman Thomas Prendergast and was responsible for administrative matters affecting the MTA Board, with oversight responsibility for MTA’s Human Resources and Planning function. She also served as Vice President and General Counsel at the Long Island Rail Road from 2008 to 2011, and as Deputy Executive Director and General Counsel at MTA Headquarters from 2003 until 2006. Before coming to MTA, she held a variety of positions in the public sector, including principal law clerk to the Chief Judge of the State of New York. Ms. Rinaldi is a summa cum laude graduate of Yale College and received her law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law.
Eric Beaton
Deputy Commissioner for Transportation and Management, NYC Dept. of Transportation
Eric Beaton is the Deputy Commissioner for Transportation Planning and Management for the New York City Department of Transportation. In this role, he oversees the design of city streets, including the City’s Vision Zero street safety program, development of bicycle, pedestrian, and public space programs, and the implementation of Select Bus Service and other transit priority projects, in partnership with the MTA. Additionally, he oversees the installation and maintenance of the city’s 225 million linear feet of roadway markings, and the production, installation, and maintenance of the over one million street signs citywide. Eric has worked at DOT since 2006 in a variety of roles, most recently as Senior Director for Transit Development. In this role, he worked in partnership with the MTA to build a program making the city’s buses faster, more reliable, and easier to use through the use of improved fare collection, dedicated bus lanes, transit signal priority, real time passenger information, and other mobility and safety treatments. Eric has a Master’s degree in Urban Planning from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, and a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University.
Joshua Benson
Deputy Commissioner for Traffic Operations, NYC Dept. of Transportation
Joshua Benson is the Deputy Commissioner for Traffic Operations for the New York City Department of Transportation, overseeing the operation and maintenance of over 13,000 traffic signals, 300,000 street lights, 85,000 metered on-street parking spaces 39 municipal parking lots and garages and 600 red light, speed and bus lane enforcement cameras. Joshua also leads the development of new traffic safety programs and technologies including accessible pedestrian signals, a Connected Vehicle pilot project and new street lighting initiatives. Prior to serving in this role, Joshua was the Bureau Chief for Transportation, Traffic & Parking for the City of Stamford, Connecticut, where he was the head of the municipal transportation department, responsible for all aspects of transportation planning, operations & maintenance. Joshua oversaw a reorganization of the department and launched a citywide pay by smartphone program allowing customers to pay for all on- and off-street City by parking with a smartphone app. Before leading the Transportation Bureau in Stamford Joshua held several positions with NYCDOT over 13 years with the agency, most recently as the Assistant Commissioner for Street Improvement Projects. In this role, Mr. Benson oversaw the agency’s large portfolio of in-house projects. Mr. Benson also led the Public Spaces, Pedestrian Projects, Bicycle and Greenway teams, which developed pedestrian and cycling specific roadway improvements. Joshua graduated from New York University and he holds a Master of Science in Urban Planning from Columbia University. Joshua is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners.
George Latimer
Westchester County Executive
Phillip Eng
President, Long Island Rail Road
Phil Eng is the President of the MTA Long Island Rail Road, the largest commuter railroad in the nation serving over 89 million rides a year. Phil initiated the railroad's Forward program – a set of strategic initiatives aimed at improving service reliability and enhancing the customer experience. Under Phil’s leadership, Long Island Rail Road is delivering an historic $6B capital program to modernize and expand its infrastructure, including Double Track, Main Line Expansion, East Side Access, Jamaica Capacity Improvements, new M9 fleet and Centralized Train Control. Phil first joined the MTA in 2017 as the Chief Operating Officer where he spearheaded initiatives focused on modernizing transportation systems through innovative technologies. These include the development of new fare payment applications and testing new signaling systems. Phil also served as the Acting President for New York City Transit leading the early efforts of the Subway Action Plan. Phil began his career in public service in 1983 at the New York State Department of Transportation as a Junior Engineer. He gained expertise working his way up through various groups from Structures, Bridge Inspection, Maintenance, Design and Construction. At NYSDOT Phil held various positions including Construction Supervisor, Regional Director, Chief Engineer before his final post as Executive Deputy Commissioner. During his tenure at DOT, Phil played a vital role improving project delivery and use of design build while delivering significant projects such as the I-81 Environmental Impact Study, Rochester Train Station, and construction of the new Kosciuszko and the Mario M. Cuomo Bridge bridges. He earned his Bachelor of Engineering at Cooper Union and is a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers. Phil is a native Long Islander, and currently resides with his wife, Carole, and their four children in Smithtown.
Eric Macfarlane
Deputy Commissioner for Infrastructure, New York City Department of Design and Construction
Eric C. Macfarlane leads the New York City Department of Design and Construction, Infrastructure Division with a technical staff of 550 employees, consisting mostly of engineers, project managers and analysts. The division is responsible for the design and construction of the consolidated roadway, sewer and water main capital infrastructure programs for the City of New York. Currently the division has a five years capital plan portfolio of 650 projects in various phases from planning, design and construction, valued at more than $9.5 billion. A few significant active projects under his management include: connecting the final section of a third water tunnel to the City’s water distribution system, a project valued at more than $235 million, and the East Side of Manhattan Coastal Resiliency, a $900 million project and $62 million Times Square Plaza. The Infrastructure Division also procures the services of many consultants for both design and construction management who provide supplementary assistance in the delivery of DDC’s annual infrastructure projects commitment plan. He has a Bachelor of Engineering degree from the City College of New York, and a Master of Science, Civil Engineering degree from Polytechnic Institute of New York (NYU-Tandon School of Engineering). He is a New York State licensed Professional Engineer.
Dr. Michael Horodniceanu
Professor and Chair, Institute of Design & Construction Innovation Hub, NYU Tandon School of Engineering
Dr. Horodniceanu is a Professor and the inaugural Chair of the Institute of Design & Construction (IDC) Innovation Hub, a new initiative aimed at actively engaging stakeholders across the construction industry, including government officials, developers, contractors, legal entities, unions, and consultants in formulating new approaches to the challenges facing the NY metropolitan area and the wider world. He is a transportation executive with over 40 years of academic and industry experience and over 30 years’ experience in executive management. He has managed complex mega-projects and operations, has expertise in motivating professional and unionized workforces, and has a demonstrated history of delivering on customer commitments. Prior to his current tenure at NYU Tandon, Dr. Horodniceanu held various roles in government, private enterprise, and academia. His business experience includes serving as Chair and CEO of the Urbitran Group, providing leadership for a multi-disciplinary transportation, planning, engineering, and construction management firm with offices throughout the US. His government experience includes serving as the NYC Traffic Commissioner (1986-1990) where he was charged with day-to-day traffic operations and the reconstruction of the roadway infrastructure throughout New York City, and more recently as President of MTA Capital Construction (2008-2017) where he was responsible for the nation’s largest public transportation construction program with over $25 billion in construction. His tenure at the MTA included oversight of several mega-projects, including East Side Access, Second Avenue Subway, No. 7 Line Extension, and the Fulton Transit Center. He taught at Polytechnic University (the precursor school to NYU Tandon School of Engineering) from 1975 to 1980 and Manhattan College from 1980 to 1982 and was instrumental in developing new transportation-related classes at both institutions. Dr. Horodniceanu is the author of numerous publications and the recipient of many honors and awards, including Civil Engineer of the Year from the American Society of Civil Engineers (2011), British Construction Industry Award for the Fulton Transit Center, and the New York Landmarks Conservancy 2015 Chairman’s Award for the Corbin Building. He earned a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Technion, Israel Institute of Technology; an M.S. in Engineering Management from Columbia University; and a PhD in Transportation Planning and Engineering from NYU Tandon, then known as Brooklyn Polytechnic. He is a registered Professional Engineer in New York.
Frank Reig
CEO, Revel
Frank Reig is the CEO and Co-Founder of Revel, NY's first shared electric moped service that launched in Brooklyn in July 2018. Revel now offers 1,000 Revels across 20 neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens and launched in Washington, DC in August 2019. Until April 2018, he was Vice President of Energy, Industrials & Real Estate at GLG, where he managed a team of research professionals assisting hedge fund, investment banking, and private equity clients. Before GLG, Frank worked on the global sustainability team at Cushman & Wakefield and was also a Leadership Fellow with the Port Authority of NY & NJ working in the World Trade Center Redevelopment Department.
Melinda White
Chief Executive Officer, Transit Wireless
Melinda White leads Transit Wireless with more than 20 years of experience in the wireless and telecommunications industry. Most recently, Ms. White served as the CEO of Black Walnut Ventures where she advised companies on strategy and operations. Prior to joining Black Walnut Ventures, Ms. White worked at Frontier Communications for more than 12 years and most recently served as president of the West region. Ms. White has also held senior leadership roles at Wink Communications, Cox Communications and Cellular One. In addition to her professional achievements, Ms. White has received numerous accolades including the “2016 National Asian American Consortium Community and Engagement Leadership”, Catalyst “2016 Women on Board”, Portland Business Journal “2015 Women of Influence”, Fierce Telecom “2014 Women in Wireline to Watch,” and the National Organization for Women 2012 “Woman of Power and Influence” recognition.
Cecilia Kushner, AICP
Executive Vice President, Planning Division, New York City Economic Development Corporation
Cecilia Kushner is the Executive Vice President for the Planning Division at NYCEDC where she leads large multidisciplinary teams to deliver on some of the most ambitious and complex urban planning and development projects in New York City. As part of her role, Cecilia oversees $1 billion of active projects geared towards delivering infrastructure and amenities and improving quality of life for New Yorkers across the five Boroughs. With 15 years of experience in urban planning, development and resiliency in New York City, London and Paris, Cecilia has dedicated her career to executing significant initiatives that seek to improve global cities. Cecilia received her bachelor’s degree from La Sorbonne and holds a master’s degree in Historic Preservation from The Bartlett School of Planning at University College London, and a master’s degree in City Planning from Hunter College, where she has taught Planning as an adjunct. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two children.
Patrick W. Condren
Vice President, BUS4NYC Coalition Inc.
Patrick W. Condren is VP of recently newly formed BUS4NYC Coalition Inc., and a BANY Board Member - Bus Association of New York, founded in 1938. BUS4NYC is a NYC based advocacy group of Private Bus operators who provide the riding public transportation services, including Commuter, Transit, Inter-City, Charter, Tour, Sightseeing, Contract, Shuttle and Airport Services. BUS4NYC members include bus and motorcoach companies, regional associations, and industry suppliers. BUS4NYC-BANY held a very well attended Bus Operator Conference/Summit on October 29, 2019 addressing topics including congestion, street equity, mobility solutions, dedicated bus lanes, and related matters in an effort to provide the riding public with safe, efficient and environmentally positive transport… a shared ride vehicle. www.BUS4NYC.org Mr. Condren is a transportation consultant. As President of Patcon Associates, Ltd. he provides government relations for bus operators in NY. His lifelong participation in the motorcoach/bus industry in NYC includes owning/operating a NYC franchised bus company in earlier years. He is a member of American Bus Association(ABA) and United Bus Association (UMA) as well as regional bus associations. Mr. Condren is active in NYC civic affairs and many not for profit organizations for years. He remains Co-Chair of the New York “Big Apple Greeter” program. He is a graduate of Brooklyn Prep and St. Francis College and a lifelong resident of New York City.

Registration & Networking Breakfast


Keynote Speaker Polly Trottenberg, Commissioner, New York City Department of Transportation


Moving New Yorkers Safely

When most New Yorkers commute to and from work each day, their primary concern is how long it will take to get from Point A to Point B. However, equally or more important is their safety, regardless of the transportation method they choose to use. The city has put forth many policies to improve the safety of all commuters, most notably Vision Zero. Our panel will assess the success of these efforts while also looking forward to other future efforts, including lowering the speed limit on the West Side Highway, redesigning streets and intersections to increase pedestrian safety, piloting connected vehicles, developing new rules to limit delivery gridlock, restricting helicopters flying over New York City, and more.


Jeff Coltin, City Reporter, City & State NY (moderator)
Eric Beaton, Deputy Commissioner for Transportation and Management, New York City Department of Transportation
Senator Andrew Gounardes, Sponsor of Pedestrian Safety Bill
Eric Macfarlane, Deputy Commissioner for Infrastructure, NYC Department of Design and Construction
Keith Todd Kerman, Deputy Commissioner for Fleet and Chief Fleet Officer, New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services



Reshaping New York's Transportation Infrastructure

If the capital plans and blueprints are accurate, New York is in the midst of a massive redesign of its transportation infrastructure. From subways and commuter rails to buses and airports and beyond, countless projects are underway that will fundamentally change the way people move through New York. There is also an increased focus on making more public transportation systems ADA accessible. Experts on this panel will discuss all of these major developments, including Phase 2 of the Second Avenue Subway, East Side Access, Penn Station Access, building more elevators in subway stations, remapping bus routes, AirTrain LaGuardia, and so much more.
Dr. Michael Horodniceanu, Professor & Chair, Institute of Design & Construction Innovation Hub, NYU Tandon School of Engineering (moderator)
Catherine Rinaldi, President, Metro-North Railroad
Phillip Eng, President, Long Island Rail Road
George Latimer, Westchester County Executive 
Melinda White, Chief Executive Officer, Transit Wireless
Patrick W. Condren, Vice President, BUS4NYC
Gillian Blake, PE, Principal, ARUP Infrastructure New York



Can Alternative Transportation Methods Save New York?

New York’s transportation options seem to grow by the day. State legislators attempted to legalize e-bikes and e-scooters during the 2019 legislative session; NYC Ferry service continues to expand throughout the five boroughs; and the New York City Council recently announced a $1.7 billion plan to build 250 miles of protected bike lanes. This panel discusses this recent flurry of legislation and how these alternative modes of transportation fit into the future of New York’s transportation ecosystem, particularly for areas currently underserved by mass transit.
Dan Rivoli, Transit Reporter, Spectrum News NY1 (moderator)
Assemblywoman Nily Rozic, Sponsored legislation on e-bikes and e-scooters
Cecilia Kushner, Executive Vice President for Planning, Development and Transportation, New York City Economic Development Corp.
Frank Reig, CEO, Revel
Tom Gray, Senior Vice President, Capalino+Company
Sean Flood, CEO, Gotcha
NYC Councilman Antonio Reynoso, Sponsored legislation for ebikes

How Technology is Transforming Public Transit

Perhaps no element will be as crucial to the success of improving New York's transportation systems as technological improvements. They impact all elements of the process for the millions of daily riders and drivers, from how one pays for a service to how quickly one can use their preferred mode of transportation. In addition, many of these upgrades can be done quicker and with less interruption to service than full-scale infrastructure projects. Panelists will discuss the many technological upgrades in the works, including improved signals for subways and trains, a new tolling system for congestion pricing, the OMNY fare payment system, priority signaling for buses, mobile applications, and more.
Annie McDonough, Tech Reporter, City & State NY (moderator)
Senator Leroy Comrie, Chairman, Corporations, Authorities and Commissions Committee
New York City Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez, Chairman, Committee on Transportation
Joshua Benson, Deputy Commissioner for Traffic Operations, New York City Department of Transportation
David Hirschler, Director of OEM, Sustainability & Legislative Affairs, ERI
Michael Affronti, SVP, Product Management, Dataminr

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