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newsletter

Run for the 2022 YPT-NYC Board!

Run for the 2022 YPT-NYC Board!

In October, YPT-NYC will be conducting elections for the 2022 term.


We need your talent and skills to ensure that YPT-NYC remains a thriving organization for our members for years to come! Being on the Board means you imagine and directly execute all of our activities and programming. YPT-NYC provides an exceptionally rewarding way to connect with like-minded professionals and contribute to something that you are passionate about. Also, it’s fun! Despite challenges with COVID-19 in the past year, we were still able to run a packed calendar of workshops, author talks, tours, skill shares, and happy hours! 

What exactly does being on the Board of Directors entail? 
Directors typically offer a time commitment of 3-5 hours per week. In addition to their position-specific duties, directors must participate in monthly Board of Directors meetings. The following positions will be up for election:

YPT NYC Board Positions 
(Click here for descriptions)
1. Chair 2. Deputy Chair3. Content Manager
4. Treasurer5. Professional Development Manager6. Membership Manager
7. Events and Programs Manager8. Communications Manager9. Social Media Manager
10. Partnerships Manager  

You can read more about our current YPT-NYC Board members on our website here.

How do I participate in the election?
To run for a position or vote in the election, you must be an active Member of YPT as of October 1, 2021. Check your membership status here, or join here. Membership is only $20/year and allows us to continue providing exceptional programming and events.

You also must complete a Candidate Submission Form, which includes a brief (~3 paragraph) candidate statement and select the position(s) that you would like to run for. To access the form, click this link: YPT Chapter Board Candidate Submission Form

What is the election timeline?

  • September 20, 2021 – Complete Candidate Submission Form
  • October 18, 2021 – Election ballots will be sent out by YPT International to eligible voting Members for all Chapter and International elections by 9:00 AM EDT. 
  • October 29, 2021 – Online elections close at 11:59 PM EDT. International and Chapter Board members and nominees will be notified of election results shortly thereafter.
  • November 1, 2021 – December 31, 2021 – Board Transition Period
  • January 1, 2022 – New term begins for International and Chapter Boards.
  • December 31, 2022 – 2022 Term Concludes

Note that YPT International is also holding elections for YPT-International and Regional boards. Information regarding these positions has been sent out separately. If you are interested in these positions and did not receive the information, please reach out to deputy@yptransportation.org.

If you have any further questions, please reach out to any of the current board members or email yptnyc@gmail.com!

Best,
2021 YPT-NYC Board


Use the YPT LinkedIn group if you are #OpenToWork!

Our LinkedIn group is a great way for members to share information about yourself as a job seeker, connect with others, or share job opportunities!


Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is an Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is the local chapter of Young Professionals in Transportation International, a nonprofit coalition of organizations, which helps professional development, fellowship, and networking for young professionals in the transportation field. YPT-NYC’s members keep the Greater New York City region moving while providing a space for growing skills, sharing knowledge, and expanding professional networks

Categories
newsletter

September 2021 News and Events

WHAT’S NEXT FOR OUR TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM?

With schools back in session in September, more commuters are going back to work in-person, and despite the on-going pandemic and new challenges brought by the delta variant, it seems as if our region’s resilience is being tested: 

  1. Will more commuters drive into the CBD, and will congestion increase along with associated air quality issues and increased commuting times? 
  2. Will the boom in bicycling continue, and will there be enough bike parking? 
  3. Will some companies continue to offer remote work options indefinitely? 
  4. Will customers return to transit? Will fares sustain service levels? Will ridership demand be met with enough service in areas with the most transit-dependency?

Share your perspective by commenting on our social media posts this week!

Rice Terraces, by Dasic Fernandez. Mural on Asphalt. 2021. Commissioned through NYCDOT Art’s Asphalt Art Activations initiative in partnership with NYCDOT Public Space and the Chinatown Partnership. This project is a State of the City commitment to bring beautifully designed public spaces to the top 33 neighborhoods across NYC hit the hardest by COVID-19, and it is located on Doyers Street between Pell Street and Bowery in Chinatown. @nyc_dotart 

UPCOMING YPT-NYC BOARD ELECTIONS

In October, YPT-NYC will be conducting elections to select our Board of Directors for the 2022 term. If you want to help YPT-NYC thrive next year, then consider running! (Or you could run for Regional or International YPT Board of Directors!) Board members typically commit 3-5 hours per week to their duties and attend monthly Board meetings. To either run for the Board or vote in the election, you must be an active member. Check your membership status here, or join here

Available YPT-NYC positions are listed here.
Submit an interest form to run for a Board position by Monday, September 20. 
Stay tuned for more details on YPT-NYC Board Elections in an email later this week! 


YPT-NYC SEPTEMBER EVENTS

Meatpacking District Open Streets Walking Tour 
Meet at Gansevoort Plaza at 2 9th Avenue

Thursday, September 9 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m
Register Here!

We will tour the Meatpacking District Open Street with our guide for the evening, Evan Sweet, Operations and Economic Development Manager of the Meatpacking Business Improvement District. Learn how the Meatpacking District is making space for people walking and biking and for public art on their streets. Come with questions, curiosity, and comfy footwear. After the tour we will grab some outdoor drinks in the neighborhood with your fellow YPT-NYC members! 
Mask policy: Fully vaccinated people are not required to wear a mask. However, masks may be required if we go indoors or in crowded areas. Unvaccinated people must wear a mask at all times.
Bring: mask, proof of vaccination, sunscreen, water


Outdoor Happy Hour
Meet at CultureLab LIC at the Plaxall Gallery
Thursday, September 23 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. 

Register Here!

Join us for another outdoor happy hour, this time at CultureLab, where we’ll enjoy live music, great food and drinks in Long Island City! Invite your friends and coworkers! 
Mask policy: Fully vaccinated people are not required to wear a mask. However, masks may be required if we go indoors or in crowded areas. Unvaccinated people must wear a mask at all times.
Bring: mask, proof of vaccination, sunscreen, water


Virtual Transportation Trivia
Thursday, September 30 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Register Here!

Do you find yourself unable to stop showing off facts about tunnel boring machines, airline mergers, and subway dogs? Do you crave recognition for your special knowledge? Join us for New York’s 12th Annual (Virtual) Transportation Trivia event — a joint activity supported by the local American Planning Association Transportation Committee (APA), Young Professionals in Transportation NYC (YPT-NYC), and the local Women’s Transportation Seminar Young Professionals Committee (WTS-GNY). Register to participate (registration closes on September 23) and look for the Zoom Meeting link in your inbox.


YPT-I MENTORING PROGRAM
Sign up now, and program launching in October
Register Here!

Forbes recently reported that while 76% of people think mentors are important, only 37% actually have one. We would like to change those numbers. We are thrilled to announce that YPT International has launched a mentorship program to help transportation professionals learn from other transportation professionals. We are eager to empower those with more experience to share their knowledge, skills, and professional journey. YPT-I will be accepting applications from interested transportation professionals. Please note that all mentees must be a YPT member but anyone in the transportation community can be a mentor. 


YYPT-NYC MEMBER PROFILE
Diane Xiao, PE, ENV SP: Project Engineer at VHB

Diane specializes in traffic and pedestrian analysis, and she has a background in Transit Signal Priority (TSP) projects and simulation modeling. She is passionate about Complete Streets, sustainable transportation, and pedestrian- and bicyclist-oriented design.

Q&A
 
1.    What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  
 
I loved the YPT-NYC/WE Bike NYC Queens Bike Tour with NYCDOT! It was educational, and I got to bike with other transportation enthusiasts, which is always a good time. It was great to meet the community members behind the Open Street efforts on both 31st and 34th Avenues.
 
2. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be?
 
I love biking and the city has greatly improved its bike infrastructure. However, there seems to be a lack in the feedback system for maintenance, which sometimes makes it feel unsafe to ride in the bike lane and, in those cases, I end up riding in traffic. I wish I could snap my fingers and make NYC so bike-friendly that more people prefer to bike.  
 
3. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry?
 
I have always been passionate about sustainability. I remember hugging a tree on Earth Day in middle school! In many ways, transportation and climate change are linked. In the United States, transportation accounts for 29% of the nation’s total CO2 emissions (15-20% globally). Transportation engineering is still very car-centric, but I hope my work contributes to making the city more multi-modal.  
 
4. What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  
 
I introduced a model to prioritize sidewalk repairs around New York City Housing developments. We were able to build out a tool in ArcGIS that automated a ranking system based on inputs that accounted for both A project I worked on recently that still excites me was Princeton University’s Washington Road Planning Study. We looked at Washington Road, which will be the main north-south connection between the new campus and the existing campus. I was part of a team that created a comprehensive pedestrian, bicycle, and cart mobility plan for this new corridor.
 
5. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?
 
Get involved and stay active in professional organizations. Talk to people about things you care about and listen to others about their passions (it helps you realize what is important to you!) 
 
6. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice an NYCT Subway Announcement?

 
I would whole-heartedly pick a comedian and then let them write the announcement script! 


Use the YPT LinkedIn group if you are #OpenToWork!

Our LinkedIn group is a great way for members to share information about yourself as a job seeker, connect with others, or share job opportunities!


Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is an Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is the local chapter of Young Professionals in Transportation International, a nonprofit coalition of organizations, which helps professional development, fellowship, and networking for young professionals in the transportation field. YPT-NYC’s members keep the Greater New York City region moving while providing a space for growing skills, sharing knowledge, and expanding professional networks

Categories
Member Profiles

Member Profile: Diane Xiao

Diane Xiao, PE, ENV SP: Project Engineer at VHB

Diane is a Project Engineer at VHB. She specializes in traffic and pedestrian analysis with a background in Transit Signal Priority (TSP) projects and simulation modeling. She is passionate about Complete Streets, sustainable transportation, and pedestrian/bicyclist-oriented design.

Linkedin: dianexiao (https://www.linkedin.com/in/dianexiao/)

1. What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  

I loved the YPT-NYC/WE Bike NYC Queens Bike Tour with NYCDOT. Not only was it educational, but I also got to bike with other transportation enthusiasts which is always a good time. It was great to meet and talk to the community members behind the Open Street efforts on 31st Avenue and 34th Avenue Open Street.

2. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be? 

I love biking and the city has improved significantly in its bike infrastructure. However, there lacks a feedback system in the maintenance which often makes it feels more unsafe to bike on the bike lane than in traffic (glass, potholes, etc). I wish I could snap my fingers and make NYC so bike friendly that everyone prefers and WANTS to bike.

3. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry?

I have always been passionate about sustainability and climate change. I remember hugging a tree on Earth Day in middle school. In many ways, transportation and climate change goes hand in hand. In the United States, transportation accounts for 29% of the nation’s total emission (15-20% globally)1. A lot of the analyses and design we do are still car-centric. I hope to be part of the group that works in making the city more multimodal and greener.

 
4. What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  

A project I worked on recently that still excites me to talk about was the Princeton Washington Road Planning Study. We looked at Washington Road, which is the singular north-south connection that will bring the new campus to the existing campus (North Campus).  We created a comprehensive pedestrian, bicycle, and cart mobility plan for the Washington Road corridor.

5. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?

I would say get involved and stay active in professional organizations. Talk to people about things you care about and learn about what other people are doing. Talking things through with people helps you realize what is important to you.


6. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice a NYCT Subway Announcement?

Full heartedly would pick a comedian and let them have free range on the script. Some suggestions from NY: Hannibal Buress, Chris Rock, Awkwafina. 

1 https://www.nationalgeographic.org/media/transportation-and-climate-change/

Categories
newsletter

August 2021 News and Events

SUMMER STAYCATION MOBILITY EDITION

We are a community that enjoys the journey just as much as the destination! If you’re sticking around this month and looking for fun ways to enjoy the summer, then look no further than exciting trips in our region by bike, ferry, tram, bus, subway or commuter rail! 

And during your summer staycation, now is a great time to engage with YPT-NYC! Our events, programming, social media, and LinkedIn forums foster community, professional development, and networking. If you’re job searching, stay engaged with us because the pandemic hiring freezes are now being lifted and new job postings continue to pop up! There have been several new job opportunities shared in YPT-NYC’s LinkedIn group, and our members support each other with networking, encouragement, and advice.

Postcards Sunset, by Paul Ker. New York, NY. Instagram @Lumn8tion.  

YPT-NYC AUGUST EVENTS

YPT-NYC, WE Bike NYC, and NYCDOT Bike Tour 
Sunday, 8/15, 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.  (wheels-down at 11:30 a.m.) 
Register Here. 

For this ride, we are joined by staff from NYC DOT and volunteers from the 34th Ave Open Streets Coalition, who will guide us through the borough and showcase several of their recent projects, including the hugely successful 34th Avenue Open Street! We’ll gain insights into the implementation of bike infrastructure from conception to fruition. We’ll begin the ~5-mile ride at Queensbridge Park (find us at the south end of the park near Vernon Blvd and the Queensbridge Park Greenway) and ride through Astoria, Woodside, and finally end in Jackson Heights. After the ride, stick around for drinks and snacks at Queens Beer Factory.

Mask policy: Fully vaccinated people are not required to wear a mask while riding, however you may be required to wear a mask if we go indoors or at crowded ride stops. Unvaccinated people must wear a mask at all times.

What to bring: Your bike, helmet, mask, sunscreen, money for food/drinks, full water bottles.

Note: This is an all-gender ride open to all bicyclists of all experience levels.

Manhattan Meatpacking District Open Streets Tour 
Thursday, 8/19, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m 

Register Here. 

We will tour the Meatpacking District Open Street guided by Evan Sweet, Operations and Economic Development Manager of the Meatpacking Business Improvement District. Learn how the Meatpacking District is making space for people walking and biking and for public art on their streets. Come with questions, curiosity, and comfy footwear. Meet at 6:30 p.m. at Gansevoort Plaza (2 Ninth Avenue). After the tour we will grab some outdoor drinks in the neighborhood with your fellow YPT-NYC members! Location TBD. 

Mask policy: Fully vaccinated people are not required to wear a mask. However, masks may be required if we go indoors or in crowded areas. Unvaccinated people must wear a mask at all times.

What to bring: Mask, proof of vaccination, sunscreen, water.

Outdoor Happy Hour
Thursday, 8/26, 6:30 p.m to 8:30 p.m. 

Anchors away! Join us in West Harlem at Baylander Steel Beach for good conversations and maybe a sea shanty or two. Baylander Steel Beach is located on the deck of Baylander IX-514, which served in the Vietnam War and is now docked at West Harlem Piers on 125th Street on the Hudson River. Set sail for good vibes.


YPT-NYC MEMBER PROFILE 
Daniel Muniz, Acting Chief of Staff of the Sidewalk Program, New York City Department of Transportation

Daniel works for the New York City Department of Transportation where he has served as a Legal Consultant, Analyst, Senior Analyst, Deputy Director, and more recently as the Acting Chief of Staff for the Sidewalk Program. His current role focuses on Program Management, which includes budgeting, planning, project delivery, and, most importantly, the construction of sidewalks throughout all five boroughs of New York City. Improving New York City’s sidewalk infrastructure and making it more accessible to all pedestrians is the key driver of all his work.
 
1.    What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  
 
YPT Happy Hour! Connecting with fellow transportation enthusiasts in a laid-back social setting allows everybody to network and share experiences. It’s the best way to get to know others and engage with people in the transportation field.
 
2. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be?
 
I am probably biased because I live in Rockland County, but being able to take a “one-seat” train ride directly into Manhattan without having to do multiple transfers would be a huge improvement. There are options available such as driving to Tarrytown or White Plains and taking Metro-North, or riding a Coach bus, but commute times aren’t the best. There is talk in Congress to change this, so I am hopeful this will come to fruition.  
 
3. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry?
 
The transportation industry lured me in when I started my first job as a Legal consultant assigned to the NYC Department of Transportation. I was researching trip and fall claims related to the City’s infrastructure and that’s where I first started learning about the Agency and its operations. I obtained a B.S. in International Relations and Politics, so naturally, my next step was to go to Law School. However, by the time I became an Analyst for the Sidewalk Program, my interest quickly shifted to Public Administration and Urban Planning. Understanding how our cities connect and how the movement of people influences community development was what ultimately pulled me into the transportation world.  
 
4. What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  
 
I introduced a model to prioritize sidewalk repairs around New York City Housing developments. We were able to build out a tool in ArcGIS that automated a ranking system based on inputs that accounted for both condition and demographic scores. This allowed us to factor equity more easily into the work we did. It’s been two years since we started piloting this new tool and we are looking to expand its use for other work we do. Shout out to the team of analysts and our Information Technology team for making that project a reality!
 
We are also working on a complete overhaul for all our internal databases and incorporating them all into one centralized system. Being a part of the engineering of a completely new system that will handle all our operations in a more efficient way is truly rewarding.
 
5. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?
 
Be curious and ask questions! Try to find an area that you feel most connected with and surround yourself with others that are already in the field. Networking events and socials may not be your cup of tea, but once you get out there and start making connections, it all becomes a lot easier.
 
6. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice an NYCT Subway Announcement?

 
Samuel L. Jackson would be perfect.
 

CHECK YOUR MEMBERSHIP STATUS & RENEW TODAY!
Check your membership status here, or join here. Please consider registering with your personal email rather than your work or student email. Being an active member is $20 for the year and allows us to provide our membership with impactful programming!
 

YPT-NYC LINKEDIN
Use the YPT LinkedIn group if you are #OpenToWork!
Our LinkedIn group is a great way for members to share information about yourself as a job seeker, connect with others, or share job opportunities!


Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is an Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is the local chapter of Young Professionals in Transportation International, a nonprofit coalition of organizations, which helps professional development, fellowship, and networking for young professionals in the transportation field. YPT-NYC’s members keep the Greater New York City region moving while providing a space for growing skills, sharing knowledge, and expanding professional networks

Categories
Member Profiles

Member Profile: Daniel Muniz

Daniel Muniz works for the New York City Department of Transportation where he has served as a Legal Consultant, Analyst, Senior Analyst, Deputy Director, and more recently as the Acting Chief of Staff for the Sidewalk Program. His current role focuses on Program Management which includes budgeting, planning, project delivery, and most importantly – the construction of sidewalks throughout all five boroughs of New York City. Improving New York City’s sidewalk infrastructure and making it more accessible to all pedestrians is the key driver of all his work.

1.What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  

I would say YPT Happy hour! Being able to connect with fellow transportation enthusiasts in a laid-back social setting allows everybody to network and share experiences. It’s the best way to get to know others and engage with people in the transportation field.

2. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be? 

I am probably biased because I live in Rockland County but being able to take a “one-seat” train ride directly into Manhattan without having to do multiple connections/transfers would be a huge improvement. There are options available such as driving to Tarrytown/White Plains and taking Metro-North or riding a Coach bus but commute times aren’t the best. There is talk in Congress to change this, so I am hopeful this will come to fruition.

3. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry?

The transportation industry lured me in when I started my first job as a Legal consultant assigned to the NYC Department of Transportation. I was researching trip and fall claims related to the City’s infrastructure and that’s where I first started learning about the Agency and its operations. I obtained a B.S. in International Relations and Politics, so naturally, my next step was to go to Law School. However, by the time I became an Analyst for the Sidewalk Program, my interest quickly shifted to Public Administration and Urban Planning. Understanding how our cities connect and how the movement of people influences community development was what ultimately pulled me into the transportation world.

 
4. What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  

I introduced a model to prioritize sidewalk repairs around New York City Housing developments. We were able to build out a tool in ArcGIS that automated a ranking system based on inputs that accounted for both condition and demographic scores. This allowed us to factor equity more easily into the work we did. It’s been two years since we started piloting this new tool and we are looking to expand its use for other work we do. Shout out to the team of analysts and our Information Technology team for making that project a reality! We are also working on a complete overhaul for all our internal databases and incorporating them all into one centralized system. Being a part of the engineering of a completely new system that will handle all our operations in a more efficient way is truly rewarding.

5. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?

Be curious and ask questions! Try to find an area that you feel most connected with and surround yourself with others that are already in the field. Networking events and socials may not be your cup of tea, but once you get out there and start making connections, it all becomes a lot easier.


6. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice a NYCT Subway Announcement?

Not sure why, but I feel Samuel L. Jackson would be a perfect fit for that role. 

Categories
newsletter

July News & Events

CELEBRATING INDEPENDENCE!

Between barbecues, fireworks, working from home, and/or returning to our offices this month, we reflect on the meaning of independence and what that means for us personally, for members of our professional community, and for the New York City region. 

At its best, transportation provides us with the independence to access our jobs, friends, family, school, groceries, health services, and more. For many, insufficient transportation options limit independence. We are reflecting on mobility throughout our region, and where there is seamless connectivity as well as where there may be harder to reach areas or mobility challenges. Connect with us on social media with your thoughts and ideas! 

Photo by Mike Szpot, 2021. Celebrating the Wins, Photography Exhibit. South Street Seaport. @illkoncept. 

YPT-NYC JULY EVENTS
 

Outdoor Happy Hour
Pier 5 Picnic Area at Brooklyn Bridge Park, July 22nd at 6:00 p.m.

Join YPT-NYC for a casual happy hour at the Pier 5 Picnic Area in Brooklyn Bridge Park on Thursday, July 22nd at 6:00 p.m. Come hang out and connect with some fellow YPT’ers. YPT will provide some drinks and snacks, but please feel free to bring anything else you would like for yourself (or to share). No fear — there will be bathrooms nearby!
Sign up here!

In-Person Subway Tours 

Join us to explore the purpose, politics, and possibilities of NYC’s public transportation infrastructure!

Tour highlights:

  • See how the subway and railroads continue to influence the planning and development of the NYC region of 20+ million people.
  • Learn about the history of the NYC subway as well as the PATH subway and the country’s busiest commuter railroads.
  • Discover today’s challenges, from governance to climate change, and learn about tomorrow’s possibilities for the region’s built environment.
  • Explore how the subway operates and learn about some of the technology keeping it moving 24/7.
  • Experience the design of new, old, and abandoned stations and uncover secrets hidden in plain sight.

Sign up is via Airbnb below:
Downtown Manhattan: Saturday, July 17th, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Midtown Manhattan: Saturday, July 24th, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Queens and Manhattan: Saturday, July 31st, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Registrants will receive details through Airbnb after signing up. Please feel free to attend one or all of the tours. Since there is a 10 person limit for each tour, kindly cancel if you’re no longer able to attend. Note that the price for YPT members is $1 (minimum to cover Airbnb’s insurance fee). Also, please bring a MetroCard with 1 loaded fare (or a device with OMNY contactless tap capability). Tours visit areas open to the public and do not access any restricted areas.

Transportation Research Forum NY: NJT “While You’ve Been Away” Virtual Presentation
Friday, July 23rd at 1:00 p.m.

Kevin S. Corbett, President & CEO of New Jersey Transit, will be discussing what NJT has done in terms of capital projects, technology advances, customer experience enhancements, and improvements in service, safety, and reliability to prepare the system for customers’ return as we emerge from the pandemic. Please RSVP to yptnyc@gmail.com before 7/23 and you will be emailed the access information from the Transportation Research Forum.

TransportationCamp PHL Summer Gathering (In-Person) 
Saturday July 24th 

Itching to get back out and explore? Maybe meet some people who aren’t Zoom icons? Great news – our friends at YPT Philly are running the first ever TransportationCamp PHL Summer Gathering on Saturday July 24th! Connect with other transportation enthusiasts and explore the great city of Philadelphia for a leisurely, transit-centric day. Bonus: if you take Amtrak there, check out the Moynihan Train Hall!


See more details and registration on Eventbrite!


YPT-NYC MEMBER PROFILE

Antonio Sieunarine, Analyst at MTA New York City Transit

Antonio Sieunarine is an Analyst at the Department of Subways Rail Control Center. His current work is focused on the Rail Control Center’s capital projects, including NYCT signal modernization efforts. Previously, Antonio worked for the Newark Downtown District BID as an urban planner, and he also worked in the aviation industry as an aerial survey pilot and mission specialist conducting LiDAR mapping across the continental United States. Antonio holds an MUP from CUNY Hunter College and a B.S. in Commercial Aviation from the University of North Dakota. In his free time, he enjoys hiking and running, and you can also find him staring at the sky anytime an airplane flies overhead. 

What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  

My favorite YPT-NYC event is the summer tour series. I love them for two reasons: being able to host YPT-NYC tours at the Rail Control Center pre-pandemic, and being a participant in tours of other facilities. I am keeping my fingers crossed and looking forward to hosting YPT-NYC tours at the RCC again once it is safe to do so. 

How did your role at the MTA change during the pandemic?

The pandemic was a challenging time at the MTA, when many of my colleagues made the ultimate sacrifice. Their names should never be forgotten. I, along with members of my team, were part of the effort to set up a contact tracing effort within Service Delivery for our Train Operators, Conductors, Dispatchers, and other Service Delivery personnel. In addition to performing the duties of contact tracing, these calls to colleagues were also about being a caring and empathetic voice on the other end. Many of my colleagues were quarantined and alone, very sick, and appreciated having someone to talk to during such a difficult moment. The peak of the pandemic saw late nights and weekends where contact tracing calls were made. We knew we had the moral duty to do everything we could to protect and keep our fellow colleagues safe. View the MTA’s Virtual Covid Memorial here. 

What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry? 

This world is an amazing place and the transportation industry facilitates my wandering nature. Whether it is a short trip locally or a different continent, the ability to experience unique things on a local, regional, and global level is one of the amazing things that the transportation industry enables. 

What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  

We are currently expanding the usable footprint of the Rail Control Center as we work towards centralization of control and signal modernization efforts across the B-Division (lettered lines). We will have one of the largest video walls by area once this project is completed. The video wall will allow us to manage service and assist in the incident handling process. I look forward to giving fellow YPT’ers a future tour of this space.   

What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?

I would advise a fellow YPT’er to remain curious and let that drive your career path. I have focused on the things I am passionate about and it has led to forward progress and career success. 


RECENT YPT-NYC EVENTS

Thanks to all the participants who joined us for the fun and educational events in June!

  • GIS/Illustrator Skill Share with Sam Sklar
  • June Subway Tours 
  • YPT-NYC Central Park Picnic
  • The Future of NYC Transportation System, a Conversation with Dick Ravitch
  • Virtual Tour: Historic NYC Aerial Imagery

Help us understand what skills our community wants to learn and share! If you have a skill or are interested in learning a skill, please let us know on our Skill Share Form.

CHECK YOUR MEMBERSHIP STATUS & RENEW TODAY!

Check your membership status here, or join here. Please consider registering with your personal email rather than your work or student email. Being an active member is $20 for the year and allows us to provide our membership with impactful programming. YPT-NYC is an official 501(c)(6) non-profit organization that provides benefits to its members through professional development, fellowship, and networking. 

YPT-NYC LINKEDIN

Use the YPT LinkedIn group if you are #OpenToWork! Our LinkedIn group is a great way for members to share information about yourself as a job seeker, connect with others, or share job opportunities!


Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is an Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is the local chapter of Young Professionals in Transportation International, a nonprofit coalition of organizations, which helps professional development, fellowship, and networking for young professionals in the transportation field. YPT-NYC’s members keep the Greater New York City region moving while providing a space for growing skills, sharing knowledge, and expanding professional networks

Categories
Member Profiles

Member Profile: Antonio Sieunarine

Antonio Sieunarine is an Analyst working at the Department of Subways Rail Control Center. His current work focuses on capital projects that interfaces with the Rail Control Center including NYCT signal modernization efforts. Before arriving at the MTA, Antonio worked for the Newark Downtown District BID as an Urban Planner. Antonio also worked in the aviation industry as an aerial survey pilot and mission specialist conducting LiDAR mapping across the continental United States. Antonio holds an MUP from CUNY Hunter College and a B.S. in Commercial Aviation from the University of North Dakota. When not at work, he enjoys hiking and running. You can also find him staring at the sky anytime an airplane flies overhead.    

1.What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  

My favorite YPT-NYC event is the Summer Tour Series. I love them for two reasons; being able to host YPT-NYC Tours at the Rail Control Center pre-pandemic and being a participant in tours of other facilities. I am keeping my fingers crossed and looking forward to hosting YPT-NYC tours at the RCC again once it is safe to do so. 

2. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be? 

Wearing my transportation planner hat I would like to see true integration across the various agencies providing rail service across the Tri-State Region.

3. How did your role at the MTA change during the pandemic?

The pandemic was a challenging time at the MTA where many of my colleagues made the ultimate sacrifice and their names should never be forgotten. I along with members of my team were part of the effort to stand up a contact tracing effort within Service Delivery for our Train Operators, Conductors, Dispatchers, and other Service Delivery personnel. In addition to performing the duties of contact tracing, these calls to colleagues were also about being a caring and empathetic voice on the other end. Many of my colleagues were quarantined and alone, very sick, and appreciated having someone to talk to during such a difficult moment. The peak of the pandemic saw late nights and weekends where contact tracing calls were made. We knew we had the moral duty to do everything we could to protect and keep our fellow colleagues safe. https://new.mta.info/covid-memorial

 
4. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry? 

This world is an amazing place and the transportation industry facilitates my wandering nature. Whether it is a short trip locally or a different continent, the ability to experience unique things on a local, regional, and global level is one of the amazing things that the transportation industry enables. 

5. What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  

We are currently expanding the usable footprint of the Rail Control Center as we work towards centralization of control and signal modernization efforts across the B-Division (Lettered Lines). We will have one of the largest video wall by area once this project is completed. The video wall will allow us to manage service and assist in the incident handling process. I look forward to giving fellow YPT’ers a future tour of this space.   

6. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path? 

I would advise a fellow YPT’er to remain curious and let that drive your career path. I have focused on the things I am passionate about and it has led to forward progress and career success. 

7. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice a NYCT Subway Announcement? 

If Don LaFontaine was still with us, I would be delighted to hear his voice making an announcement in the NYCT Subway System.

Categories
newsletter

June 2021 Newsletter

CELEBRATING PRIDE AND NATIONAL SAFETY MONTH! 

Pete Buttigieg, U.S. Secretary of Transportation, is the first openly gay cabinet member in our nation’s history and his appointment is a milestone in the transportation industry. He holds a key role in the Biden Administration to achieve distributional justice and climate goals with infrastructure investments. We honor all the contributions that LGBTQ people have made in transportation, and we celebrate those in our community! 

It is also National Safety Month, and in the transportation sector, safety has taken on a new meaning during the pandemic. Additional cleaning staff have been deployed, air filtration vents installed, contract tracing initiated, social distancing and face masks required, and new safety protocols established. We honor all the people that work to keep us moving safely! 
 

Jim Powers – Mosaic Trail, 2020. This new installation is on a pedestrian refuge island at 1st Ave and St. Marks Place, and Powers created many others in the East Village since 1985.

CHECK YOUR MEMBERSHIP STATUS & RENEW TODAY!

Check your membership status here, or become a member here ($20 annual fee). Please consider registering with your personal email rather than your work or student email. 


YPT-NYC JUNE EVENTS
 

GIS/Illustrator Skill Share with Sam Sklar
Thursday, June 10 7:00-8:30 p.m.

Join us for our first Skill Share event of 2021, where we bring in experts from the transportation field to share their technical and creative skills!

In this interactive workshop, YPT member Sam Sklar, a Transportation Research Specialist and Communications Strategist, will walk attendees through how to use Adobe Illustrator to beautify GIS outputs and create visualizations that are engaging and informative. The workshop will cover concepts like color theory, layout design, processing, and more. Read more about Sam’s work and focus on his blog: sklar.substack.com

One day before the workshop, YPT will send a data package along with instructions for downloading QGIS and a free trial of Adobe Illustrator to those who are registered.

Click here to register.

Help us understand what skills our community wants to learn and share! If you have a skill or are interested in learning a skill, please let us know on our Skill Share Form.


In-Person Subway Tours 

Join us to explore the purpose, politics, and possibilities of NYC’s public transportation infrastructure.

Sign up is via Airbnb below:
Queens and Manhattan: Saturday, June 12th, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Brooklyn & Manhattan: Saturday, June 19th, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Lower Manhattan: Saturday, June 26th, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Please feel free to attend one or all of the tours. Since there is a 10 person limit for each tour, kindly cancel if you’re no longer able to attend. Note that the price is $1 for Airbnb’s insurance fee. 


Central Park Picnic at the Sheep Meadow 
Sunday, June 13, 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. (Rain Date: Saturday, June 19, same time)

Join us for a casual picnic in the Sheep Meadow in Central Park!  Pet-friendly, comfy grass, close-to-bathrooms, and frisbee friendly. Please bring whatever you may need for yourself. 

The specific coordinates of our location will be emailed out to registrants on the day of, so stay tuned!

Click here to register.


The Future of NYC Transportation System, a Conversation with Dick Ravitch
Wednesday, June 16, 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Image credit: William E. Sauro/The New York Times

Dick Ravitch has earned a reputation for his political savvy, business skill, and commitment to social responsibility throughout his decades-long career in government and business. He is renowned for his work to fix numerous fiscal crises in the public sector. Our community may know him best for his work as Chairman and CEO of the MTA from 1979 to 1983. He successfully transformed a system struggling with disinvestment and disrepair by reorganizing its management structure (including establishing Metro-North Railroad) and developing a long-term capital plan. With the MTA undergoing another transformation amidst a global pandemic and fiscal uncertainty, there are parallel challenges today. He remains an outspoken proponent of investing in our cities, infrastructure, and public sector workforce in the wake of the pandemic. 

Click here to register.


Virtual Historic NYC Aerial Imagery Tour
Wednesday, June 23, 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. 

Back by popular demand, join us over lunch as we explore the five boroughs as they were in 1924, using high resolution aerial imagery available publicly from the NYC Department of City Planning. We will dive into the history of the city’s development, looking into infrastructure projects underway at the time and comparing the built environment of almost 100 year ago with today’s reality. 

Click here to register.


 
YPT-NYC MEMBER PROFILE

Leah Flax, Government Relations Specialist, Government and Community Relations, MTA  

Leah Flax is an urban planner with expertise in public transportation, policy analysis, and partnership building. She currently works on bus and subway projects throughout Manhattan as a Government Relations Specialist at the MTA. Leah previously held positions 100 Resilient Cities, at the U.S. DOT, the Louis Berger Group (now WSP), and with the NYC DOT and Taxi & Limousine Commission. Leah lives in Fort Greene, Brooklyn where she serves on the board of the Myrtle Avenue Revitalization Project.

1. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be? 
I would make local buses and subways free.

2. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry? 
The liberating feeling of taking the local bus to the YMCA as a middle schooler, and not having to rely on someone to drive me, sparked my passion for public transit. Shout out to Norwalk Transit District!

3. What are you working on that you’re most excited by? 
The 42 St Connection Project is going to completely modernize the 42 St Shuttle and give customers at Times Square and Grand Central Station greater accessibility, reliability, and more space to move around. The project also includes renovated entrances at Grand Central Station which are already complete, and have made a huge improvement to the traveler experience – when I use them it gives me a lot of pride and joy to have contributed to the project.

4. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?  
Whether you know what your dream job is or not, with every position you take remember to learn and grow as much as you can and cherish the relationships you build along the way. 

5. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice an NYCT Subway Announcement? 
BD Wong.


RECENT YPT-NYC EVENTS

Congestion Pricing, a Conversation with Sam Schwartz 
We had a great turnout for our conversation with “Gridlock Sam”! Sam gave YPTers a history lesson on the origins of congestion pricing in the U.S., its impacts in other cities abroad, and new policies and legislation moving forward. 

Virtual Speed Networking 
This was our first time hosting our annual speed networking event virtually, and it was a success! We paired experienced transportation professionals with younger professionals and recent graduates to help them learn about career options and opportunities. 

Lawn Day 
We had a blast in Prospect Park playing Kubb and Frisbee during our first in-person event of the year! 

Creator Talk with Andrew Lynch a.k.a. Vanshnookenraggen
Thank you to everyone who joined our first Creator Talk with Andrew Lynch! We had a very informative presentation and discussion from Lynch about the unbuilt, proposed, and future transportation systems across the United States.


YPT-NYC LINKEDIN

Use the YPT LinkedIn group if you are #OpenToWork!
Our LinkedIn group is a great way for members to share information about yourself as a job seeker, connect with others, or share job opportunities!
 

Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is an Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is the local chapter of Young Professionals in Transportation International, a nonprofit coalition of organizations, which helps professional development, fellowship, and networking for young professionals in the transportation field. YPT-NYC’s members keep the Greater New York City region moving while providing a space for growing skills, sharing knowledge, and expanding professional networks.

Categories
Member Profiles

Member Profile: Leah Flax

Leah Flax (@ResilientLeah), Government Relations Specialist, Government and Community Relations, MTA

Leah Flax is an urban planner with expertise in public transportation, policy analysis, and partnership building. She currently works on bus and subway projects throughout Manhattan as a Government Relations Specialist at the MTA. Before joining the MTA, Leah worked at 100 Resilient Cities where she developed a suite of tools used by cities globally to apply resilience thinking in urban planning and project development. Leah previously held positions at the U.S. Department of Transportation, the Louis Berger Group (now WSP), and with the City of New York at the Department of Transportation and Taxi & Limousine Commission. Leah lives in Fort Greene, Brooklyn where she serves on the board of the Myrtle Avenue Revitalization Project.

1. What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  

Trivia – you do not want me on your team, I am terrible at it, but the competition is fun and I always learn new things.

2. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be? 

I would make local buses and subways free.

3. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry? 

The liberating feeling of taking the local bus to the YMCA as a middle schooler, and not having to rely on someone to drive me, sparked my passion for public transit. Shout out to Norwalk Transit District!

4. What are you working on that you’re most excited by? 

The 42 St Connection Project is going to completely modernize the 42 St Shuttle and give customers at Times Square and Grand Central Station greater accessibility, reliability, and more space to move around. The project also includes renovated entrances at Grand Central Station which are already complete, and have made a huge improvement to the traveler experience – when I use them it gives me a lot of pride and joy to have contributed to the project.

5. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?

Whether you know what your dream job is or not, with every position you take remember to learn and grow as much as you can and cherish the relationships you build along the way. 

6. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice an NYCT Subway Announcement? 

BD Wong!

Categories
newsletter

May 2021 Newsletter

CELEBRATING ASIAN-AMERICAN AND PACIFIC ISLANDER HERITAGE MONTH
AND BIKE MONTH!

 

We honor all the contributions that Asian-American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) people have made in transportation, such as for U.S. Secretary of Transportation Norman Yoshio Mineta, Aviation Pioneer Hazel Ying Lee, Materials Engineer Abdus Suttar Khan, Railroad Foreman Chin Lin Sou, and the first Chinese-American who traveled to outer space, Taylor Gun-Jin Wang. We celebrate all AAPI members of our community this month! 

May is also a time to celebrate active transportation! Since the pandemic began, there has been a surge in biking in NYC. In response, the City has established 80 miles of Open Streets, and there are roughly 50 miles of new bike lane projects in the works that will expand the current 1,375 mile bike network. Providing dedicated bike infrastructure goes a long way towards improving safety and comfort for people on bikes. Whether you ride a bike or not, we can celebrate this progress in local and regional mobility!
 

Ai Weiwei – Forever Bicycles, 2014, 1,254 bicycles. Dimensions variable. Installation view, Waller Creek Delta, The Contemporary Austin – Museum Without Walls Program, Austin, Texas, 2017, photo: Brian Fitzsimmons/The Contemporary Austin.
 

YPT-NYC MAY EVENTS
 

Congestion Pricing, a Conversation with Sam Schwartz 
Tuesday, May 4, 2021 at 6:30 p.m.

Join YPT-NYC for a conversation with Sam Schwartz, a.k.a. “Gridlock Sam,” on New York City’s congestion pricing plan. Mr. Schwartz, former New York City traffic commissioner and CEO of Sam Schwartz Consulting, has been an advocate for congestion pricing for over a decade. Mr. Schwartz has kept the topic front and center in public discourse, creating his own congestion pricing plan proposal and forming a broad coalition of supporters through the Move NY campaign. Mr. Schwartz recently served on the New York State’s congestion pricing task force and helped to formulate the current plan. Mr. Schwartz will share the latest updates on congestion pricing and its role in New York City’s COVID recovery.
RSVP will close on May 4 at 5:00 p.m., and an event link will be sent to attendees shortly thereafter.

Click here to register. 

Virtual Speed Networking 
Wednesday, May 19 at 6:00 p.m.

Our Virtual Speed Networking event is coming up soon on May 19, 2021. This event will take place on Zoom at 6:00 p.m. Similar to speed dating, recent graduates and early-career transportation professionals will be paired with experienced transportation professionals in breakout rooms in ten-minute intervals. This is a great opportunity to learn about different career options in transportation!

Click here to register.

Lawn Day 
Saturday, May 22 from 2:00-5:00 p.m

Join YPT NYC as we gather for some socially distant lawn games to refresh our motor and/or social skills after more than a year hunched over our laptops. We will provide games like Kubb, badminton, and bocce. Bring your own snacks, chairs, masks, and blankets for a low-key lawn event in Brooklyn’s front yard: Prospect Park! We will gather by the center of the Long Meadow Ball Fields. Rain Date: May 23.

Click here to register. 

Creator Talk with Andrew Lynch a.k.a. vanshnookenraggen
Wednesday, May 26 at 6:30 p.m.

Andrew Lynch, more widely known as vanshnookenraggen, is a New York based cartographer and transit activist. For nearly 20 years he has been documenting subways and exploring the rich history of unrealized transit expansion. Lynch is the Chief Design Officer at QueensLink, a project he helped launch, reimagining the abandoned Rockaway Beach Branch as a co-transit and park corridor through central Queens. Join Lynch as he takes you on a tour of lost futures from the past and places we still may travel.
Learn more about Andrew Lynch’s work here.

Click here to register.

YPT-NYC UPCOMING EVENTS
 

The Future of NYC Transportation System, a Conversation with Dick Ravitch
Wednesday, June 9 at 12:30 p.m.

Image credit: William E. Sauro/The New York Times

Dick Ravitch has earned a reputation for his political savvy, business skill, and commitment to social responsibility throughout his decades-long career in government and business. He is renowned for his work to fix numerous fiscal crises in the public sector. He served as New York’s Lieutenant Governor from 2009-2010 in the midst of the Great Recession. However, our community may know him best for his work as Chairman and CEO of the MTA from 1979 to 1983. Ravitch successfully transformed a system struggling with disinvestment and disrepair by reorganizing its management structure (including establishing Metro-North Railroad) and developing a long-term capital plan for systemwide rehabilitation. With the MTA undergoing another transformation amidst a global pandemic and fiscal uncertainty, there are parallel challenges today. He remains an outspoken proponent of investing in our cities, infrastructure, and public sector workforce in the wake of the pandemic. Please join us for a conversation with Dick Ravitch to learn valuable lessons from his experience in navigating politics (including in his autobiography So Much to Do), the merits of careers in public service, and his outlook on the future of New York. 

Click here to register.

RECENT YPT-NYC EVENTS

Game Night

Thank you to everyone who joined our Game Night on
Backyard.co. We had a blast playing pictionary and cards against humanity! 

 
YPT-NYC MEMBER PROFILE

Dubary Brea, Deputy Director of Federal Transit Administration Grant Programs, NYC Department of Transportation

Bio

Dubary Brea manages a team that oversees the financial and programmatic management of over $500M in federal and state funding for infrastructure projects across NYC at NYC DOT. Previously, Dubary spent five years at the Port Authority of NY & NJ and PATH in various roles encompassing operating and capital budgeting,  financial reporting, and grants management, along with two years as a rotational leadership fellow serving in multiple departments across the agency. Mr. Brea has experience in the public, private, and non-profit sectors, which has shaped his unique policy perspectives. His prior experiences include the Congressional Budget Office, KeySpan Energy (now National Grid), Congressman José E. Serrano’s Washington D.C. office, and Groundwork, Inc. He received a Master of Public Administration from the Cornell Institute for Public Affairs (CIPA), focusing on government, politics, and policy studies, and a Bachelor of Arts in international relations and economics from Hobart and William Smith Colleges.

Q&A 

What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  
The YPT-NYC Holiday Party is always a fun occasion and I enjoy catching up with friends in the transportation sector.

If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be?
I would consolidate all the regional transportation entities, such as the MTA, NJ Transit, PANYNJ, and NYCDOT, and their respective services and revenue streams under one regional entity. I’d grant the new entity the independence and authority for all regional planning, transit service decisions, and capital project construction. Imagine using just one fare media on any of these systems: more efficient and smoother service integration amongst all the various modes and routes.

What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  
We are currently finalizing the construction and delivery of three new ferry boats for the Staten Island Ferry. The new storm-resilient vessels will be more capable of operating in a wide range of weather conditions and locations and can also be used in emergency evacuations. My team at NYCDOT manages the federal funding, reporting, and compliance for the project.

What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?
If you see an opportunity that piques your interest, actively find out more information about it and network with your colleagues at work, school, or YPT. 

What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice a NYCT Subway Announcement?
Definitely Dwayne ‘the Rock’ Johnson.
 

YPT-NYC LINKEDIN

Use the YPT LinkedIn group if you are #OpenToWork!
Our LinkedIn group is a great way for members to share information about yourself as a job seeker, connect with others, or share job opportunities!
 
WE CAN’T DO IT WITHOUT YOU!

Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is an official 501(c)(6) non-profit organization that provides benefits to its members through professional development, fellowship, and networking. YPT-NYC’s members keep the Greater New York City region moving while providing a space for growing skills, sharing knowledge, and expanding professional networks. Check your membership status here, or join here. Being an active member is $20 for the year and allows us to provide our membership with impactful programming.