Mission

The Shared-Use Mobility Center is a public-interest organization dedicated to achieving equitable, affordable, and environmentally sound mobility across the US through the efficient sharing of transportation assets. By connecting the public and private sectors, piloting programs, conducting new research, and providing policy and technical expertise to cities and regions, SUMC seeks to extend the benefits of shared mobility for all.

Transportation has become the number one source of carbon pollution in the United States. It is the second-largest expense for most families after housing, and lack of reliable access to a car, bus, or train is one of the biggest barriers to employment for Americans today.

New forms of shared mobility offer new opportunities to address some of the most critical issues facing society. In combination with public transit, shared mobility is a powerful tool that cities can use to help reduce transportation costs; lessen air pollution; and expand access to jobs, opportunity, and a better quality of life. But to fully realize these benefits – and truly address poverty, climate change, and racial inequalities – these new modes must work for everyone.

That’s why the Shared-Use Mobility Center’s mission is focused on bringing together the public, private industry, and local communities to forge partnerships, develop resources, and advance new solutions in order to reduce reliance on private automobiles and increase access to environmentally sound, cost-effective transportation options.

SUMC is uniquely suited to accomplish these goals through knowledge creation and education, practical knowledge deployment, convening and connecting, and demonstrating the potential of innovative technologies.

The Shared-Use Mobility Center is a public-interest nonprofit dedicated to creating a multimodal transportation system that works for all.

 

Vision

The vision of the Shared-Use Mobility Center is to create a world where universal mobility enables everyone to live well without having to own a car. We are working to shift America from auto-dependency to mobility choice, from restrictions to options, from vehicle emissions that negatively impact our world to a multimodal network that’s affordable, equitable, and environmentally sound.

This network of choices will be shaped by the principle that mobility is a right not limited by income or ability. We are working to make transit a robust mobility backbone, complemented by modes such as autonomous shuttles, micromobility, shared ridehailing, and active transportation.

Transforming an industry, however, takes a shift from project thinking to network thinking—not only opening up more options, but also creating links between them. Integration is vital if we are to create a viable alternative to privately owned, single-occupancy vehicles, promote economic opportunity, and reduce transportation-induced CO2 emissions—the #1 cause of climate change today.

The current transportation model threatens health, opportunity, and quality of life in ways that are unique to each region.

  • Cities fight with congestion, high commute times, lack of equal opportunity and job access, yet have the ability to be truly multimodal.
  • Suburbs can isolate older adults and those who can’t afford transportation and lack the land use to support active modes like walking and biking.
  • Rural areas face an older population and widespread economic decline. Functionally, having a car is often a necessity as not everyone can or chooses not to drive. Shared mobility adds choices and enhances the quality of life.

We can’t fight these challenges with theory. We need good transportation policy and incentives to motivate cities, companies, and people. Our job at SUMC is to work together with communities, businesses, agencies, and governments to transform roadblocks into mobility for all. That is where we are going. That’s what we are doing now.

 

Core Objectives

  • Value and improve existing mobility assets that break down existing silos between modes, sectors, and providers and reduce barriers between services to create a universal mobility system across the United States.
  • Advance policies and implementation models that support more sustainable use of resources while preserving transportation choice, increasing access, and maintaining affordable options especially for low-income and traditionally under-served populations.
  • Foster equitable transportation choices that reduce single-occupant vehicle use and combat climate change. Promote a rapid but responsible transition to a new mobility era with improved services that allow people to move more efficiently.

 

Guiding Principles

Make Mobility Available for All. Everyone is entitled to multimodal access to jobs, core services, and destinations that contribute to a good quality of life. Low-income, historically marginalized, and essential workers face greater barriers that must be overcome.

Empower Communities. Communities must have a voice in expressing their needs and in planning and envisioning transportation opportunities that strengthen communities.

Focus on Racial Injustice and Marginalized Communities. Transportation has divided communities in the past and we emphasize mobility opportunities and investments to right past wrongs.

Create Jobs that Boost Local Economies. Maximize good-paying jobs and opportunities in order to create innovative, decarbonized, multimodal transportation infrastructure, manufacturing, and expanded research and development.

Extend Safety Concerns Beyond the Occupants of Vehicles. Mobility must be safe for all travelers, with particular attention to pedestrians and those using bikes and scooters.

Mitigate Climate Change. Transportation must be decarbonized through an “all of the above” approach. Electrification is not enough. Attention must be paid to shared use, infrastructure design, and land use.

Support Multimodal Options through Land Use Policy. Requirements for Federal funding of all physical projects (housing, government facilities, and transportation) should promote land-use outcomes that support transit, active transportation, shared mobility, mobility hubs, and pedestrian design needs.

Establish Partnerships that Further the Public Interest. The public sector must set rules that support the public interest to ensure affordability, justice, and sustainability in all transportation programs, whether or not the project is led by private sector interests. The private sector and partnership models are an important part of creating innovative strategies to successfully meet mobility for all goals.

Use Public Investment to Create Mobility Options. Public investment must support shared assets, including sidewalks, micromobility infrastructure, and roadways by investing in transit and new modes that benefit all communities.

Optimize Freight and Delivery to Support Broad Goals. Federal policy must provide for the efficient flow of goods and services to enhance economic activity while supporting environmental justice, community-centered land use, and decarbonization.

Read our Transportation Priorities for the First 100 Days of the Biden Administration