Cities wising up to disruptive transportation tech: ‘Why should they use our public right of way to become billionaires?’

As cars clogged Seattle’s streets, desperately trying to escape a rare snowstorm, transportation experts high above discussed the future of urban mobility.

Transportation leaders from West Coast tech hubs gathered Friday afternoon to explore technology’s impact on how we get around as part of the 2019 State of Downtown event, hosted by the Downtown Seattle Association. And one thing quickly became clear: Cities are wising up to the tactics of transportation technology companies.

“The private sector is going to keep disrupting transportation,” said Margi Bradway, Portland Metro’s deputy director for transportation planning. “It’s going to happen again and again and again.”