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 This past summer, the Massachusetts legislature passed a bill dedicating $3 billion to transportation over 5 years. We’ll explore how grassroots advocacy catapulted transportation to the top of the priority list for the Governor, Speaker of the House, and Senate President, and how grasstops outreach, communications work, and “inside baseball” saw a campaign through to victory. Part of the new transportation funding will likely support restoring a rail line to three older industrial cities. In preparation for the rail, 31 cities and towns have been working together to shape the economic and housing development the rail will bring. The region has selected areas for development and for protection, and the state, in an unprecedented way, is aligning its investments to support this smart growth plan. The presenter will discuss the bottom-up strategies for change (and their limitations) and lessons learned from the efforts to create a regional plan for smart growth and win new transportation funding.


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