Paul Mackie

Paul.Mackie@MobilityLab.orgPaul Mackie smaller

Paul has been Communications Director at Mobility Lab since 2012. He specializes in reporting, writing, editing, helping journalists, and speaking about how places can become vibrant through public-transportation initiatives.

For the eight years prior to joining Mobility Lab, he was Climate Change Communications Director at The Nature Conservancy and Director of Media Relations at the World Resources Institute.

He has also been a daily newspaper journalist at various outlets in the St. Louis area; a freelancer for the Chicago Tribune, National Geographic, and other media organizations; and a writer at the National Association of Counties. Paul has been quoted on transportation issues by USA Today, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Washington Post, NPR, and many others; has spoken at many conferences, including MIT’s Disrupting Mobility, Innovate Raleigh, and various state and national transportation events; and received the 2015 Excellence in Advocacy Award and 2013 Presidents Award from the Association of Commuter Transportation.

paul-speaking-at-techiesPaul is currently serving on the “Safe Routes to Healthy Foods Taskforce” of the Safe Routes to School National Partnership and on a panel that provides direction and guidance for disseminating research produced by the Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP), a collaboration of the Federal Transit Administration (FTA); the Academies and its Transportation Research Board (TRB); and the Transit Development Corporation, an educational and research arm of the American Public Transit Association (APTA). He is also a member of the Surface Transportation Communicators of DC.

Paul obtained his master’s degree in media studies and political science from Georgetown University and his bachelor’s in English literature and journalism from Southern Illinois University. On a personal level, he enjoys writing at his blog Pop Culture Lunch Box, tennis and other sports, playing and listening to music, and traveling with his wife Rachel, son Jackson, and daughter Zoey.

His first car was a Chevy Chevette. Now he bikes through three states to get to work. And his bike is a lot nicer than the Chevette.

New services are moving fast, and cities are looking to update procurement processes to keep up

Notoriously lumbering municipal procurement processes can be an especially bad fit with the way newer transportation options need to be implemented. How are local agencies supposed to form “first-mile, last-mile” partnerships with flexible technology services like Lyft, Via, and Bridj when the official steps to solidify those partnerships impede the process? “A transit agency can… Read more »

WIRED tries to cover TDM, but shows that it’s still a little hard for them to grasp

I like WIRED’s take on the topic of TDM, which they semi-smartly term “alternative-transport perks.” Semi because perks is a nice way to describe what “transportation demand management” really is all about. But “alternative” does a disservice to the need to continue along the path of normalizing things like bicycling and transit. And “transport” sounds… Read more »

Ford’s Super Bowl ad captures where mobility is headed

Besides a stunner of a Super Bowl between New England and Atlanta, there was a lot to like in between the snaps as well. Lady Gaga thrilled at halftime and cinematic TV commercials were unveiled left and right. But in Mobility Lab’s space, Ford Motor Company really took the cake as the top ad. It… Read more »

In Arlington, 221 Champions recognized for work promoting transportation options

While Arlington County’s transportation network benefits from being directly across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., the county has worked hard to get people moving in ways other than by car. “We have the lowest drive-alone rate for commuters in the state,” noted Larry Filler, bureau chief of Arlington County Commuter Services. But that rate… Read more »

Sidewalk delivery robots could be a “slam dunk” for Virginia

Bills going through the Virginia legislature, if passed, could make the state the first to allow robot delivery devices on sidewalks statewide. This is exciting because it’s a way to make Virginia first in a very innovative area: automated delivery. Sarah Rankin of the Associated Press interviewed me about the pending bills. Paul Mackie, a… Read more »

New report highlights most dangerous cities for walking, calls for pedestrian-centered streets

Ever since the car began dominating the way people move throughout the United States, bicycling and walking have become often dangerous and shunted propositions. Decades later, more engineers, planners, and developers are understanding the importance of rethinking the car-centered designs of roads in order to mitigate the dangers they pose for pedestrians. Today, Smart Growth… Read more »

Media should be more balanced in articles about new transportation options

Several articles today across the mainstream media are pinpointing negative aspects about the latest major transportation projects and sidestepping all the positives these improvements will bring to communities. In The New York Times, Emma Fitzsimmons explores the fear of rents soaring with the opening of three new subway stops on the Upper East Side. While this… Read more »

New carpooling service looks to employers for ride-matching potential

Commuter carpooling has been in a nosedive since about 1980. And it’s nearly inexplicable that the rate hovers around 5 percent in Washington, D.C., where traffic and parking are particularly abominable even though there are many – maybe too many – ride sharing resources . Since 1980, leaders have invested in HOV lanes and E-ZPass,… Read more »

12 ways developers can guide tenants to better transportation decisions

Real-estate developers and property managers have long been coming around to the simple business decision that, if they want to manage profitable projects and attract tenants, they should build and own near transit and other non-driving options. Just look at Detroit: A 2.5-mile streetcar system expected to launch in a few months to downtown is… Read more »

Ride-hailing has a friend in Chao, but does self-driving?

In today’s USA Today, technology and culture reporter Marco della Cava notes that although incoming U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao’s “public service record is extensive, her leadership tenure as Labor secretary and at the head of organizations such as the United Way and the Peace Corps doesn’t shed much light on how she would rule… Read more »

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