Fiscal Year 2023 underscored the need for transit advocacy to ensure the success of transit well beyond the ride. This year, transit saw historic investment on the part of the State of Missouri; a renewed focus on moving transit forward through expansion including construction and steps forward in the Northside-Southside corridor, new programming to build ridership; and a transformation of places around stations into exciting, active spaces in our communities. The impacts are extending well beyond just the ride to access, equity, opportunity and growth through transit.
These impacts are what have fueled the mission of Citizens for Modern Transit (CMT) for the past 39 years and will continue to motivate the organization as we move into the future.
Since CMT’s establishment in 1985, it has grown to represent more than 22,000 constituents, including transit riders, major employers, academic institutions, and labor and community organizations. CMT serves as a strong and effective voice on transit-related matters and is continually working to establish, support and enhance programming and initiatives to help further public transit access. The organization’s vision, tenacity and extraordinary leadership plays a fundamental role in maintaining a safe, integrated and affordable transportation system for the St. Louis region.
Throughout FY2023, CMT’s advocacy efforts played a role in bringing the region together, building support and achieving change. Transit remained at the center of many regional conversations. Light rail expansion in Illinois continued with construction underway, while the Northside/Southside corridor moved forward incorporating both the City of St. Louis and St. Louis County. Critical state funding for transit was secured providing the local match needed for the historic federal investment in transit. In addition, transit stops were transformed through CMT’s placemaking program in partnership with AARP in St. Louis in Missouri and Illinois. CMT continued to push the transit conversation in the community through programming, events and its lecture series. Check out a recap in the Fiscal Year 2023 Annual Report.
There continue to be challenges for transit – building back ridership, supply chain issues, lingering safety and security issues and labor shortages. This coming year, CMT will work to further three key areas of opportunity. These include increasing community collaboration and support for transit at the regional and state levels, rebuilding ridership numbers and maintaining the organization’s financial stability. We also look forward to working alongside regional leaders as they prepare to make important decisions tied to the future of transit.
Public Transit is moving in the right direction with your support. Thanks for joining the ride.
Chair, CMT Board of Directors
Kimberly M. Cella
Executive Director, CMT