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Friday, January 25, 2013

Defining Multimodal

We have heard some of you asking about the definition of multimodal. This is a good reminder to us not to use too much jargon as we communicate, or at the very least, to define our terms as we use them.

Knowing the planning community and the people in our region, we expect that trying to come to an agreement on what multimodal means could create quite a stir. Rather than add complication to this subject, we offer this simple definition of "multimodal" in terms of moveDC.

Multimodal (adjective): describes a transportation system that accommodates walking, bicycling, transit, railroads, and driving.

Okay...Why multimodal?

Too often transportation planning starts with a focus on one mode or another, rather than first looking at the entire system. For moveDC, we are starting by looking at the entire transportation system. We will steadily work toward the networks for different kinds of users (pedestrians, bicyclists, transit riders, drivers, etc.) as the planning process moves along in the next year. In the end, we'll be planning a transportation system that layers the many travel options together in a coordinated manner so that people are not forced into only one way of traveling for all of their needs.

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