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American Public Transportation Association


Last Updated: July 22, 2016


8:30 a.m. –
9:30 p.m.

A Multimodal Tour

(40 person limit)

While en route to the APTA Operations Planning Workshop in Calgary, maximize your training and travel dollars by joining us first for a Multimodal Tour (MMT) in Edmonton, the 'City of Champions" and Capital of Alberta. The MMT marks the traditional start of the annual workshop, offering the unique experience of seeing passenger transportation in action from the passengers' perspective.

The City of Edmonton sits at the core of a vibrant regional economy with an enviable record of being at the cutting edge of public transportation innovation and development. In the past that innovation encompassed a history of streetcars, interurbans, and trolley buses. The light rail transit revolution began at the Edmonton Transit System in 1978 - the prototypical LRT system that other North American cities were soon to follow. The present day system is an integrated regional network of LRT, commuter bus, and local bus service organized about-timed-transfer hubs at multiple Transit Centers.

The Multimodal Tour of the City of Champions offers the opportunity to sample the diversity of the Edmonton transit network - then and now - in one day, plus the unique Red Arrow, a luxury intercity bus service offering frequent service between Edmonton and Calgary. Our invited hosts, the Edmonton Transit System and Strathcona County Transit, have been asked to provide representatives to accompany the technical tour to answer questions about operating practices and programs.

This Multimodal Tour is conducted by This Multimodal Tour is conducted by San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency's Paul Bignardi. Participation is limited to 40 people and advance registration is required. Participants should arrange travel to arrive in Edmonton on Saturday night and depart from Calgary at the end of the workshop. Contact  Paul Bignardi at (1-415-701-4594) to reserve your place on the tour, for details regarding lodging in Edmonton and transportation between Edmonton and Calgary, and any other questions.

Click here for the schedule in PDF

12 – 5 p.m. 
Grand Foyer 1



7 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Grand Foyer 1


Registration, for persons who pre-registered or are registering on site, will be handled by APTA staff in the workshop hotel, Hyatt Regency Calgary.

7:15 – 8:15 a.m.  
Grand Foyer 1

Continental Breakfast

8:30 – 9 a.m. 
Imperial 1 - 3


Welcome Session

Paul Bignardi, AICP, Chair, APTA Multimodal Operations Planning  Subcommittee, and Principal Transportation Planner,
San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, San Francisco, CA

Doug Morgan, Director, Calgary Transit, Calgary, AB

9:15 – 10:55 a.m.
Imperial 1 - 3

Host Session

The Green Line is a 40 km (25 mile) light rail transit line that is the next priority in the expansion of Calgary's CTrain network. In 2013, Calgary's City Council allocated $52 million/year in municipal funds from 2015-2024 to develop a dedicated transit fund to plan the Green Line. In 2014, extensive public engagement & technical studies were conducted to identify a route for the north leg of the Green Line. Centre Street was selected as the preferred route and approved by City Council.  In 2015 public engagement & design work is done to confirm the route alignment, station locations and Transit Oriented Development (TOD) plans for the southeast leg of the Green Line. In July 2015 the Government of Canada announced up to $1.53 billion for design and construction of the Green Line LRT project. The City is currently working with community stakeholders on station locations, station area design and redevelopment along the north leg of the line. This host city presentation will provide a past, present, and future overview of public transit service and the customer experience in the Green Line corridor.

Chris Jordan, Manager of Transit Planning, Calgary Transit, City of Calgary, AB

11:10 a.m. –
12 p.m.  
Imperial 1 - 3

Estimating, Modeling, and Forecasting

The technical elements of future planning are a critical, but often overlooked and frequently misunderstood, element of transit planning. The tools and processes used to estimate, model, and forecast future ridership, population growth, equipment needs, capital costs, and many other elements often involve interesting, and sometimes very sophisticated applications, of mathematical and logic principles. Share with attendees examples of modeling, estimating, or forecasting that you were a part of, or that has impacted transit service at your agency.

Jim Moore, Service Planner, Sound Transit, Seattle, WA

Don't Overthink It: How Houston Uses Historical Data to Perform Accurate Ridership Forecasting
Jim Archer, Director, Service Planning, Scheduling and Evaluation, Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County, Houston, TX

Charm City Circulator - Operations and Financial Analysis with Advanced Modeling
Deborah W. Matherly, Principal Planner, Louis Berger, Washington, DC

Mark Berger, Principal Transportation Planner, Planning Facilities and Resource Management, Louis Berger, Washington, DC   

12 – 1:30 p.m. Imperial 4 - 5

Lunch (Networking or Quiet)

Take your pick. Attendees who want to network and meet new people from new places will be seated together and will be encouraged to network using some fun techniques that will be shared at the conference, while those who want a quiet lunch or need to catch up on some work will be allowed to opt out of the networking activity.

1:30  - 2:45 p.m.  
Imperial 1 - 3

Service Planning Focus on ADA Coordination

Changes on fixed-route services operated by a transit agency can have significant and expensive implications that reach beyond the routes themselves. Changes in fixed-route service can impact other forms of transit, such as paratransit, dial-a-ride, and volunteer transportation programs. Also, some cities and states have chosen to offer ADA services at levels beyond those required by federal law. A new route may mean that ADA service has to operate in a new area or that some riders are no longer eligible (or become eligible) to ride a dial-a-ride or volunteer transportation. How does your agency coordinate regular service route planning with other forms of transit? Tell us how your agency performs this specialized work and where problems have arisen in the past.

Jim Archer,  Director, Service Planning, Scheduling, and Evaluation, Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County, Houston, TX

The Domino Effect: How Fixed Route Service Changes Impact Other Types of Transit
John Harper, Manager, Contracted Transit Service, Metropolitan Council, St. Paul, MN

"We're All in This Together" - An Innovative Approach to Regional Service Expansion
Michelle Meaux, Regional Coordination Planner, Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Austin, TX

Andrew Ittigson, Senior Transit Planner, AECOM, Dallas, TX

Muni Service Equity Strategy
Sandra Padilla, Transit Planner, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, San Francisco, CA

3 – 4 p.m. 
Imperial 1 - 3

Rapid Fire

Rapid fire-style presentations are sweeping the nation. You may have seen variations of this concept at other conferences and events. It’s a great way to learn a little about a lot of different transit topics in a short period of time. Presenters have just three minutes to share nine slides, so the idea is to keep it brief and snappy. This session is open to all workshop attendees. There are a limited number of presentation slots available, so let us know if you are interested in participating and we can share more details. Any transit-related topic is welcome!

Michael Abegg, Planning & Operations Manager, Solano County Transit (SolTrans), Vallejo, CA

Simon Fortier, Account Manager, Giro Inc., Montreal, QC

Mariano Majan, Key Account Manager, Goal Systems, S.L., Madrid Spain

Paul Supawanich, Director of Customer Success, Remix, San Francisco, CA

Lacy Bell, Planning Project Manager, Regional Transportation District, Denver, CO

Pat Scrimgeour, Assistant General Manager, Customer Systems and Planning, OC Transpo/City of Ottawa, ON

Eric Miller, Senior Rail Service Planner/ Scheduler, Regional Transportation District, Denver, CO

Yasutake Kojima, Director, New York Office, East Japan Railway Company, New York, NY

Michael Abegg

4:15 – 5:15 p.m. 
Imperial 1 - 3

Subcommittee Meeting

Attend and meet the Multimodal Operations Planning Subcommittee officers and experience how the subcommittee works with APTA staff to plan the workshop. Potential host cities and transit agencies for the 2017 and 2018 workshops will be the main discussion topic.

6:30 - 7:30 p.m.
Imperial 4 - 5

Welcome Reception

Enjoy a reception in the Hyatt Regency Calgary hosted by APTA with light hor 'd oeuvres, wine, beer and, cocktails where attendees can network with one another and meet with exhibitors of transit related products who are also attending the workshop.


7 a.m. – 5 p.m. 
Grand Foyer 1



7:15 – 8:15 a.m.
Grand Foyer 1


Continental Breakfast / Transit Jeopardy

Learn some interesting facts about transit while enjoying breatkast. Some very "transit-smart" people and noted "gurus" attend this workshop. To beat them you have to be lucky, crafty - or both. Valuable prizes (not really!) will be awarded to the winning team.

8:30 – 10:10 a.m.
Imperial 1 - 3

Tales of Community Engagement and Outreach

Community engagement and outreach are not synonyms. While community outreach is a strong strategy when communicating or gathering input on project-specific information, community engagement promotes the full participation of community members in the decision-making processes. Engagements relies on long-lasting, trusting relationships with community members over a lifetime. What elements and strategies have your agency or consulting firm used to build and maintain relationships with community that prepares individual members to participate in transit planning and operations decision-making to their fullest potential - especially people historically disengaged or left out of public processes? Share triumphs (and failures, which are just as important) of how you have done engagement and outreach that discusses useful strategies and illustrates lessons learned so we can all continue to improve.

James Drake, Service Planner, Sacramento Regional Transit District, Sacramento, CA

Build A Bigger Table: The Tale of Metro Transit's Community Engagement Practice
Jill A. Hentges, Supervisor of Community Outreach & Engagement, Metro Transit, Minneapolis, MN

BaltimoreLink: Make No Small Plans
Kevin Quinn, Director, Planning and Capital Programming, Maryland Transit Administration, Baltimore, MD

Public Challenge to a Transit Agency: The New Orleans Downtown Transit Center Alternatives Analysis
Timothy Reynolds, Senior Principal Technical Specialist, WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, Cincinnati, OH

Building a Better Transit System by Telling Better Stories
Christof Spieler, PE, LEED AP, Board Member, Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County, Houston, TX

10:25 a.m. –
12:05 p.m.
Imperial 1 - 3

Improving Mobility to Achieve a "Car Lite" Lifestyle 

The field of transportation is getting crowded: How do public transit service, old-line taxi companies like Yellow Cab, new age mobility providers like Uber and Lyft, car sharing programs, bike sharing programs, tech buses (Google buses), and so on, get along together? Can we all share the same public rights-of-way (traffic lanes, bus stops, passengers) without driving each other crazy? Share experiences of how public transit is co-existing in your city with old and new alternative transportation modes. Where do they complement or compete with each other, and is the competition okay? Tell us who is leading the field to implement these alternative modes, and who is resistant to change.

Raymond Mui, Director of Planning and Scheduling, Alexandria Transit Company, Alexandria, VA

Creating Transit Alternatives with Unlikely Bedfellows
Christopher Cochran, Senior Planner, Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority, St. Petersburg, FL

On Your Bike! Communicating the True Cost of Three Extra Minutes!
Rebecca Newlove, Senior Planner, BC Transit, Victoria, BC

Expanding Transit to America's Treasures: The Story of the National Mall Route
Circe Torruellas, Program Analyst/Transit Planner, District Department of Transportation / Mass Transit Administration,
Washington, DC

12:05 – 1:30 p.m. 
Imperial 4 - 5


Lunch (Career Panel)

Listen to four panelists explain their journeys to work careers in the transit industry, and pick up ideas or techniques to help further your transit related career. Let's be honest, maybe one of two attendees wanted to be a Transit Scheduler from a young age, and a few others dreamed of being a Transit Planner, but the fact is most of us wound up here after following various pathways with different backgrounds and experiences - but we all made it here due to a love of transit.

Ronald Downing, Director of Planning, Golden Gate Bridge, Highway & Transportation District, San Rafael, CA

Raymond Mui, Director of Planning and Scheduling, Alexandria Transit Company, Alexandria, VA

Gordon Robinson, PMP, Director of Planning, Corpus Christi Regional Transportation Authority, Corpus Christi, TX

Emily Yasukochi, Senior Policy Planner, Sound Transit, Seattle, WA

Daniel Boyle, 2nd Vice Chair, APTA Multimodal Operations Planning Subcommittee, and President, Dan Boyle & Associates, Inc., San Diego, CA

1:35 - 3:15 p.m. 
Imperial 1 - 3


Interactive Session (Use of "IF-THEN" Excel Formula - Build Your Own BRT Application)

Learn more about Bus Rapid Transit, and do it by engaging in an interactive using an "IF-THEN" formula driven Excel worksheet. Individuals will form into groups with one laptop computer per group. Each group will be given a budget and will plan an arterial BRT service using a customized Excel table, plan view maps and information cards that explain key BRT design elements. Choices and compromises will need to be made to design the final BRT system, which will show outcomes for three variables: costs, time savings, and community impact.

Paul Bignardi, AICP, Chair, APTA Multimodal Operations Planning Subcommittee, and Principal Transportation Planner,
San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, San Francisco, CA

3:30 – 5:10 p.m. 
Imperial 1 - 3

Building a More Resilient Transit Agency

Throughout the year, transit agencies need to respond to special events, natural disasters and other service interruptions. What can we learn from our connections with the emergency management community to be prepared for these situations? How can an agency handle the influx of additional service for special events while still maintaining operations on the regular system? What planning processes do you have in place within your transit agencies to deal with both the expected and unexpected? What advance preparations can be made and what plans actually worked? What are the best approaches to shutting a system down if necessary and then bringing it back online?

Lacy Bell, Planning Project Manager, Regional Transportation District, Denver, CO

Minnesota's Two Seasons - Winter and Road Construction
Lisa Johnson, Assistant Director, Field Operations, Metro Transit, Minneapolis,  MN

A Five-Agency Collaboration to Overcome Seattle's Congestion
Alex Kiheri, Speed and Reliability Project Manager, King County Metro Transit Division/Department of Transportation, Seattle, WA

TCRP A-41 Improving the Resiliency of Transit Agencies Threatened by Natural Disasters - Findings
Deborah W. Matherly, Principal Planner, Louis Berger, Washington, DC

Ottawa's BRT to LRT Conversion from an Operations Planning Perspective
Mathew Wolstenholme, Program Manager, Transit Operational Planning, OC Transpo / City of Ottawa, ON

Daniel Richardson, Team Lead, Service Reliability, OC Transpo/City of Ottawa, ON


7 – 10 a.m. 
Grand Foyer 1



7:15 – 8:15 a.m.
Grand Foyer 1


Continental Breakfast/Open Session 

The Open Session will focus on attendee questions and comments about the most interesting presentations observed so far during the workshop.

8:30 – 9:45 a.m.
Imperial 1 - 3


How does your agency do scheduling, and how are schedulers evaluated? Presenters will discuss both the basics of teaching and learning operations scheduling, as well as innovative and advanced concepts practiced by their agencies. How does your agency approach the bid process (rostering vs. open bid)?

Cyndi Harper, 1st Vice Chair, APTA Multimodal Operations Planning Subcommittee, and Manager of Route Planning, Metro Transit, Minneapolis, MN 

Lessons Learned from Rebuilding the Muni Subway Schedule
Leslie Bienenfeld, Manager of Fixed Guideway Scheduling, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, San Francisco, CA

Optimizing the Bidding Process - Without the Bells and Whistles
Raymond Mui, Director of Planning and Scheduling, Alexandria Transit Company, Alexandria, VA

Benefits of Joint Calculation
Mariano Majan, Key Account Manager, Goal Systems S.L., Madrid, Spain

10 – 11:40 a.m.
Imperial 1 - 3

Land Use Planning and Transit Connection

Land use planning, as practiced by cities and counties, and transit planning, as practiced by transit agencies, can conflict in a given area. Hear examples of projects where successful collaboration and integration between the two disciplines has occurred, where there was a conflict between plans, and lessons learned.

Pat Scrimgeour, Assistant General Manager, Customer Systems and Planning, OC Transpo/City of Ottawa, ON

Reversing Ridership Declines at a Time of Low Gas Prices
Daniel Boyle, 2nd Vice Chair, APTA Multimodal Operations Planning Subcommittee, and President, Dan Boyle & Associates, Inc., San Diego, CA

A Service Review to Optimize Bus Service in Northwest Calgary
David Kosior, Transit Planner and Project Leader on the Northwest Review, Calgary Transit, Calgary, AB

Transit Paradise, Lost? The Failure and Promise of Transit-Land Use Integration in Greater Toronto
Tim Rosenberger, Senior Transit Planner, WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, Cleveland, OH

Planning for 1.6 Million New Neighbors - Public Transit's Role in Shaping the City
Hannah Santiago, AICP, Strategic Planner II, VIA Metropolitan Transit, San Antonio, TX

11:40 a.m. –
12 p.m. 
Imperial 1 - 3

Closing Session 

A final short session to recap the highlights of the workshop, provide updates on the afternoon technical tours, tell attendees where and when the presentations will be available online -- and most important - to invite everyone to attend next year.

Paul Bignardi, AICP, Chair, APTA Multimodal Operations Planning Subcommittee, and Principal Transportation Planner,
San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, San Francisco, CA

 1 – 4 p.m.

 Technical Tours

1. West LRT

Blue Line West or West LRT is Calgary's newest CTrain line opened in December 2012. A tour of the line will highlight the design and planning considerations for the alignment and stations. The tour will show the results of a relatively quick but thorough planning, design and approval process that began in 1988 but restarted in 2009 with a coordinated public engagement, design build process. The tour will also highlight current operating experience and ridership with the new line that carries 35,000 people per day. The project involved a review of 20-year-old plans, extensive property acquisition, including the demolition and rebuilding of a high school. Construction of the 8 kilometre (5 mile) line and 6 stations used a design / build process that included elevated and underground stations, a new Calgary Transit operation centre, the use of a launching truss to construct an extensive elevated section and the creation of a large area for Transit Oriented Development. The new line also required major revisions to all bus routes that serve a population of over 1000,000 residents.

2. Optimizing Transit Schedules

A demonstration of how Calgary Transit's Service Design Division creates schedules, operator work, and dispatches operators each day using an automated and employee focused process. The tour will demonstrate the scheduling and cutting tools, which enable Calgary Transit to meet service requirements while minimizing operating costs. The tour will be a presentation and demonstration of the scheduling and runcutting process along with a look at Calgary Transit's dispatching operation at the Spring Gardens transit garage.

3. Calgary Transit Access

Every year, Calgary Transit Access provides over one million trips to nearly 15,000 Calgarians who cannot use Calgary Transit services due to disabilities. We work with our customers to determine eligibility, book trips, and coordinate their pickups and drop offs.
A tour of Calgary Transit Access will focus on the new Westbrook Transit Centre located directly above Westbrook Station on Calgary's newest LRT line. The tour will include a look at Calgary Transit's newest operating centre and a presentation on how Access Calgary delivers service to persons with disabilities, its history, partnerships, successes, and challenges.

4. New CTrain for Calgary Transit

Calgary Transit is adding 63 new CTrain Light Rail Vehicles (LRVs) that are the latest vehicles from Siemens. The new 'Calgary 9s' - dubbed "The Mask" - include many new features and the vehicles were designed with considerable input from Calgary Transit staff and customers. The tour will provide an up-close look at the new vehicles as well as a tour of the modern Oliver Bowen LRV maintenance facility. The tour will include a presentation on the procurement, design and construction, and commissioning of the vehicles.


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