1.29.20 – A new mobility management program has launched in Lorain County to coordinate existing transportation options. The Lorain County Mobility Management Program is an impact initiative of United Way of Greater Lorain County in partnership with MOVE Lorain County and funding from the Ohio Department of Transportation.
Sharon Pearson has been hired as the Lorain County Mobility Manager to identify community resources for transportation, analyze gaps and unmet needs within those resources, and determine the best approaches to address those gaps and unmet needs. Pearson will serve as one of over 30 Mobility Managers across the State of Ohio.
Pearson has been working on transportation efforts in Lorain County since 2012, when she worked for the Oberlin Project, an effort to improve the resilience, prosperity, and sustainability of the city. She is one of the founding members of MOVE Lorain County and was hired as a Consultant for the organization from October 2017 through December 2019.
“I know first hand what it is like to be without a car of my own. It was a very stifling feeling not being able to go where I needed and at the times I needed to go,” said Pearson. “It is important to understand the transportation needs in Lorain County and to promote options that fit those needs. It is also crucial to develop pilot projects to determine long term solutions that improve the quality of life and health for residents, while also supporting the activities that increase economic activity throughout Lorain County.”
The goals of the Lorain County Mobility Management Program are to increase awareness of transportation options, ensure transportation options are included in planning efforts, collect transportation data, coordinate educational training programs, and develop pilot projects that improve unmet needs and gaps in transportation services.
The Mobility Management program focuses on seniors 65 and older, people with disabilities, and low-income residents. Additionally, it begins to create the foundation to develop a transportation service for everyone and a shared vision of transportation throughout the County.
“We’re proud to host the Lorain County Mobility Management Program and continue our partnership with MOVE Lorain County,” said United Way of Greater Lorain County president and CEO Ryan Aroney. “We consistently hear from our community that transportation is one of the biggest barriers to success and this new initiative allows us to thoughtfully align the resources that are already available, collect and study data that will show the areas of greatest need, and then work on a plan to fill in gaps.”
The Lorain County Mobility Management Program will kick off efforts by participating in the “Ohio Loves Transit” Campaign from Feb. 10 to 14 in association with the Ohio Public Transit Association. The goal of this state-wide campaign is to highlight the role of transit as an economic engine in many communities throughout Ohio. Although Lorain County’s transit route is currently limited, it benefits nearly 50,000 people in Lorain County every year.