Mayor Michelle Wu announced on Tuesday morning that Jascha Franklin-Hodge, a board member for the LivableStreets Alliance and former Chief Information Officer for the City of Boston, will be her administration’s new Chief of Streets to oversee the Boston Transportation Department and Public Works Department.
In a press release accompanying the announcement, Mayor Wu said that “safe, healthy, vibrant neighborhoods depend on connecting our communities to Boston’s opportunities and possibilities. I’ve had the chance to work alongside Jascha in City Hall and in the community. I’m thrilled he’ll be returning to City Hall with his expansive vision, organizational expertise, and commitment to delivering change.”
“Under Mayor Wu’s leadership, we have the opportunity to reshape our transportation system to make getting around Boston more convenient, address historic and ongoing inequities, and improve safety, especially for our most vulnerable road users,” said Franklin-Hodge in the same press release. “I’m honored and excited to rejoin the City as Mayor Wu’s Chief of Streets, and to serve alongside the talented teams at the Boston Transportation Department and Public Works as we do this important and urgent work.”
Under the previous administration of Mayor Marty Walsh, the City of Boston adopted an ambitious transportation plan – Go Boston 2030 – which made promises that the city would cut the number of car trips within the city in half by 2030 by reallocating public street space to build more protected bike lanes, safer street crossings, more bus lanes, and rapid transit upgrades.
Those mode-shift targets are also a critical component of the city’s climate strategy.
Franklin-Hodge was serving in the Walsh administration as the city’s Chief Information Officer while the Go Boston 2030 plan was being developed. Now, by taking the helm of the Transportation and Public Works Departments, he will be the one to determine whether Boston will actually meet that plan’s goals.
Franklin-Hodge is currently the executive director of the Open Mobility Foundation, an organization dedicated to promoting data standards and open-source software for cities and shared mobility providers, like bikesharing systems.
Franklin-Hodge is also active on Twitter, where he frequently comments with enthusiasm for new street safety and transit initiatives around the region.
In the interests of full disclosure, Franklin-Hodge is also a supporter to StreetsblogMASS, and has contributed a $5 monthly donation since the site launched in July 2019.