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Alternative Transportation Futures

April 13, 2022 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm


In California, the car is king. Most travel is conducted by car across all socio-economic groups and this has been incentivized by massive government investment in roads, infrastructure, and sprawling land use developments. With gas prices hovering about $6 per gallon on average, will gas fueled cars continue to dominate the roads or do we need an alternative transportation future? How can we redesign our transportation system to reduce chronic traffic congestion, promote healthier environments, reduce the cost of travel, and provide greater mobility between work, home, and play for all?

Join us at the Design and Innovation Building (2nd floor) from 4-5pm on April 13 for a discussion with Hasan Ikrata, CEO of SanDag, Alyssa Muto, Director of Sustainability and Mobility Department at the City of San Diego, Larry Frank, Professor, Urban Studies and Planning at UCSD, and Andrea Vidaurre, Co-Founder at the People’s Collective for Environmental Justice. After the discussion, see a demonstration from Alexandria Real Estate about their innovative autonomous shuttle and mobility plan for Campus Point from 5-6pm.


Featured Panelists

Hasan Ikhrata is the Chief Executive Officer of the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG). SANDAG is the leading research, planning, and transportation agency for the San Diego region. Mr. Ikhrata leads a staff of over 350 professionals who develop public policy initiatives for elected officials on numerous issues encompassing population growth, transportation, environmental management, economic development, municipal finance, binational coordination, and public safety.

Andrea Vidaurre (she/her) is the Co-founder and Policy lead for People’s Collective for Environment Justice. She grew up in the unceeded lands of the Tongva people, also known as the “Inland Empire” of Southern California. She graduated with a BA in Global Studies from the University of California, Riverside. Over the past couple of years, she has worked on campaigns for sustainable economic development, worker’s rights and environmental justice throughout the Inland Empire. She is a co-founder, member and policy lead at the Peoples Collective for Environmental Justice, a community based organization focused on fighting environmental racism and finding solutions through community work.

Larry Frank is a Professor of Urban Studies and Planning at UC San Diego. Dr. Frank specializes in the interaction between land use, travel behavior, air quality and health; and in the energy use and climate change impacts of urban form policies. He is a “walkability pioneer” and was among the very first to quantify connections between built environment, active transportation, and health. He coined the term “walkability” in the early 90’s and his work led to WalkScore and has been cited over 38,000 times. He has been listed in Thompson and Reuter’s top 1% in the social sciences since 2014. He is the #1 top ranked planning academic in North America according to a recent Google Scholar ranking.

Ms. Alyssa Muto joined the City in early 2016, as the Deputy Director of Planning, where she worked on many long-range planning initiatives around housing and mobility, as well as new citywide policies for parks and open space. In 2017, Ms. Muto oversaw the City’s successful adoption of citywide residential parking reform, removing parking minimums within transit areas, and requiring transportation amenities to support alternate modes of transportation, and mostly recently brought forward a companion ordinance for parking reform for non-residential uses. She has been a leader in the City working cross-departmentally to strategize new mobility technologies and identify methods to increase safe mobility options for our residents of all ages and abilities. Ms. Muto recently accepted the position of Director for the newly merged Sustainability & Mobility Department within the City of San Diego. In her new role, among other things, Ms. Muto oversees the comprehensive update to the City’s Climate Action, where the City and Mayor Todd Gloria are looking to set forth an ambitious citywide goal of net zero by 2035.

Supervisor Nora Vargas was sworn in on January 4, 2021, to represent San Diego County’s District 1. A first-generation immigrant, Supervisor Vargas is the first Latina and first woman of color to serve as County Supervisor in the 171-year history of the County of San Diego. She is currently serving a second term as Vice-Chair of the Board. She serves as Chair for SANDAG’s Transportation Committee and the Air Pollution Control District and is the County’s representative to the California State Association of Counties (CSAC) and National Association of Counties (NACo). In February 2022, Vice Chair Vargas was appointed by Governor Gavin Newsom to serve on the California Air Resources Board. For the last 25 years, Vice Chair Vargas has been dedicated to removing barriers for underserved communities through civic engagement, public policy and community organizing. Through public service she is working to drive positive change and serve her community.

About Design@Large

Design@Large is a speaker series hosted by The Design Lab at UC San Diego, where each quarter we examine a topic in society and the relevance and implications through the lens of human centered design.

For the first time in the nearly 10-year history of the Design@Large speaker series the UC San Diego Design Lab is partnering with a state-wide organization, California 100, to present an expanded hybrid experience to not only expand the audience of our series, but to deepen the means of engagement. California 100 is an initiative focused on identifying and uplifting transformative ideas, people, and projects through research and engagement that accelerate progress towards a shared vision of California’s future over the next century, the Design Lab will host six hybrid experiences between April 13 – May 25, 2022.

Taking place in the Design Lab’s state of the art new home, the Design and Innovation Building, a series of panels, talks, and participatory design sessions will be led by an extraordinary group of California thought leaders who reflect diversity by region and industry, and the perspectives of communities who have been historically marginalized or excluded. Attendees can plan to learn more about, and actively co-create, around the following topics:

  • Alternative Transportation Futures
  • Climate Risk Reduction and Technology
  • Housing Justice and Design
  • Transborder Regions and Immigrant Integration
  • Future Prospects in Health Equity and Tech Innovation
  • The Future of Work and Higher Education

This series is sponsored by the Burnham Center for Community Advancement, San Diego Supercomputer Center, and Qualcomm Institute. Session are open and free to the public.

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April 13, 2022
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
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