Exploring Opportunities to Improve Transit Access to Community Resilience Centers for Safety and Evacuation Planning

Research Team: Elisa Borowski (lead) and Jeannine Pearce

UC Campus(es): UC Irvine

Problem Statement: Community Resilience Centers and other social infrastructure programs merge community-based support with disruption response to connect individuals to needed resources. Currently, California’s Strategic Growth Council and Department of Food and Agriculture are leading efforts to create neighborhood-level Community Resilience Centers that provide year-round services and emergency resources. Considering the potential of these centers to enhance resilience and safety for historically marginalized individuals, it is critical for public sector decision makers to understand their functions and impacts and to proactively improve transit integration and the flow of information about them and their services to the public.

Project Description: In collaboration with Climate Resolve, this project will examine the functions and impacts of Community Resilience Centers on traveler decision-making in both standard and extreme event situations. The research process, developed in partnership with Climate Resolve, prioritizes the perspectives of historically marginalized populations, particularly those at the intersections of multiple marginalized identities, such as Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC), and low-income communities. Initial planning meetings will be conducted with Climate Resolve and LA Metro, and listening sessions with historically marginalized groups will take place at the Boyle Heights Arts Conservatory–LA’s first official resilience center. These sessions will be led by community partners with a focus on identifying community members’ mobility and resource access experiences during standard and extreme event scenarios. The research findings will be shared with project partners Climate Resolve and LA Metro to inform future developments of transit-integrated social infrastructure programs and to enhance coordination between Community Resilience Centers and transit agencies in other communities across California.

Status: In Progress

Budget: $99,986