King County Metro’s Renton Kent Auburn Area Mobility Project (RKAAMP) received WTS Puget Sound chapter’s Innovative Transportation Solution Award, which acknowledges a local innovative transportation project led by a woman or team of women. Founded in 1977, WTS is an international organization dedicated to the professional advancement of women in transportation and to turning the glass ceiling into a career portal.
In partnership with community, Metro designed RKAAMP to provide greater mobility options to BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and people of color) and underserved communities in south King County, The project increased the frequency of routes in Renton, Kent, Auburn and surrounding areas.
The WTS Puget Sound chapter recognized the work done by Metro’s female employees in this project to ensure the focus was to, “center the voices of community and stakeholders in planning.”
RKAAMP involved an 18-month community engagement process to hear from residents and riders about what they needed from their transit system. Metro worked with a diverse group of 27 transit riders who included native English, Somali, and Spanish speakers, and bilingual speakers who speak Arabic, Farsi, French, and Somali.
Metro highlighted the work of these subject matter experts and their ability to provide personal experience perspectives in the packaging of service, bus stop, and access improvements.
“We consider mobility a human right,” said Christina O’Claire, Metro’s Mobility Division Director. “For an area that has been historically underserved, we wanted to ensure the community co-authored a transit approach that supported their needs. The work of our RKAAMP team to collaborate with the residents of Renton, Kent and Auburn reflects Metro’s commitment to having equity and social justice be integral to transit planning and service. We’re excited about this well-deserved recognition for our talented team members and how they prioritized equity.”
Metro was presented the award at the 2021 Virtual WTS Puget Sound Chapter Awards and Scholarships Gala earlier this month. Transportation Planner Natalie Westberg accepted the award for Metro.
Visit kingcounty.gov/careers to discover and apply for positions at King County Metro. Guided by our “True North”, we are making King County a welcoming community where every person can thrive. We encourage people of all backgrounds and identities to apply, including Native American and people of color, immigrants, refugees, women, LGBTQ+, people living with disabilities, and veterans.