Co-Creating a Community Hub for Smart Mobility: A University-Government-Nonprofit Partnership
- Junfeng Jiao (Principal Investigator)
- Devrim Ikizler (Co-Principal Investigator)
- Michael JonMichael (Co-Principal Investigator)
- Sherri Greenberg (Co-Principal Investigator)
- Kenneth Fleischmann (Co-Principal Investigator)
This NSF CIVIC grant will provide a sustainable, scalable, and transferable proof of concept for addressing the spatial mismatch between housing affordability and jobs in US cities by co-creating a Community Hub for Smart Mobility (CHSM) in vulnerable neighborhoods with civic partners. The spatial mismatch between housing affordability and jobs causes commuter traffic congestion resulting in an annual $29 billion loss to the U.S. economy alone. Rather than a one-size-fits-all solution, this grant will provide a sustainable, scalable, and transferrable method for local communities to co-create solutions that meet their needs and align with their values. CHSMs will be community-level hubs where residents can access multiple modes of transport such as shared (e-)bikes, e-scooters, ride hailing, electric vehicle charging stations, and public transit. It will provide more mobility options to residents, increase their access to jobs, ameliorate existing transit deserts, and improve the efficiency of the overall transportation system. The CHSM concept will likely benefit all kinds of communities, with the greatest benefits going to those who are most underserved by the current transportation system and most under-resourced due to the job/housing mismatch. The results and findings from this project will provide new insights into how to improve residents’ mobility in vulnerable neighborhoods and alleviate the job/housing mismatch nationwide.
The goal of this project is to develop, implement, and evaluate a Community Hub for Smart Mobility (CHSM) to solve the job/housing mismatch in US cities. The research team will focus on Georgian Acres, a historically under-resourced neighborhood in northeast Austin, Texas and work with multiple civic partners to address the unique transportation needs of the neighborhood. The project will be carried out through the following five thrusts: 1. Co-Designing the GA-CHSM with the Georgian Acres (GA) Neighborhood, 2. Co-Developing the GA-CHSM, 3. Co-Operating the CHSM with Civic Partners, 4. Evaluating the GA-CHSM’s Impacts, and 5. Scaling and transferring the CHSM concept through the City of Austin’s Project Connect. Both quantitative (e.g., GIS analysis, transportation modeling, machine learning) and qualitative (e.g., interviews, surveys, focus groups) research methods will be used in this project to evaluate the success of the CHSM. These findings will contribute to the literatures on transportation planning, community planning, and participatory design and will serve as a model for tackling the job/housing mismatch through community-based mobility solutions.
This project is part of the CIVIC Innovation Challenge which is a collaboration of NSF, Department of Energy Vehicle Technology Office, Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate and Federal Emergency Management Agency.