Anti-Racism Topic of the Month

This article series was published in the 2020 InMotion Newsletter (July - December) and focuses on anti-racism work in transportation planning. The series is meant to build a deeper understanding and awareness of the history of racism in transportation planning—both on a national scale and within our local community.  

  1. July: Black Lives Matter
  2. August: Racism in Planning
  3. September: environ. Racism
  4. October: Wiley Griffon
  5. November: Walking While Black
  6. December: Mobility & Transit 

Anti-racism article

Black Lives Matter

The City of Eugene’s Transportation Planning team acknowledges the history of racial injustice in transportation and city planning. In recent years there has been an increased public and professional interest in safe streets, micro-mobility, and healthy, active transportation options. While these recent priorities are exciting, we must recognize that none of them focus on correcting the experience of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC). Transportation and systemic racism are historically intertwined, and we cannot expect change to occur without structural change to our planning practices. These transportation innovations are only meaningful for communities if intentional anti-racism work is done first. As a city, community, and as transportation professionals, we have a lot of work to do to correct the injustices of the past.

We fully support and want to echo the following statement made by Eugene City Councilors: “The killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery were enabled by a culture of oppression and dehumanization that has deep roots in our society. Dismantling this culture will require us to think about what people with privilege, especially White Privilege, should be doing to change this culture, and challenging systemic bias in our neighborhoods, businesses, and our city government.”

The transportation team is dedicated to doing the personal and professional research to educate ourselves and the community on transportation justice. To begin, our team has organized an internal series of racial equity and history sessions to better understand how the work we do impacts the experience of people living and traveling in Eugene. We are committed to looking closer at how projects disproportionally impact BIPOC communities and will put more concentration on racial equity going forward. In the coming months, the InMotion Newsletter and social media pages will feature articles on racial equity and the history of racism in Eugene. When the Breakfast at the Bike Bridges event series resume, we will include discussions of the background of racial discrimination associated with our bridges and other transportation infrastructure.

Our goal on the City of Eugene Transportation Planning team is to lead with compassion and understanding so that all people feel safe in the community, regardless of skin color. Black Lives Matter, and we encourage you to check out these articles for further reading on the intersection of transportation and racism.