Kyeongsu Kim, PhD, joins RSG as a Director and brings over 15 years of experience in travel demand modeling and data analytics. Kyeongsu has led numerous innovative data analytics and modeling projects and has a proven track record that exceeds client expectations. Importantly, his analytical and project management skills will allow us to continue to bridge the project delivery gap between consultants and government agencies.
Jonelle Hanson, AICP, joins RSG as a Director and brings over 12 years of transportation planning experience in the public and private sectors. Her primary interests are in strategic mobility planning and long-range transportation planning. She is also researching the manufacturing of landing infrastructure for delivery using drones, or Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS). Jonelle's experience and expertise will allow us to continue to help clients plan for and adapt to rapidly changing traveler behavior.
The Zephyr Foundation has awarded PopulationSim its “Zephyr Software Badge” after RSG Senior Director Joel Freedman nominated the program. The award was made after Zephyr's Software Badging process found that the population synthesis program is easy to use, useful to Zephyr's community of users, and contributed to a common problem space.
RSG originally developed the population synthesis program for the Oregon Department of Transportation and its partner agencies. It replaced multiple population synthesis tools being used throughout the state at the time. Unlike other population synthesis software products, PopulationSim handles multiple geographies and avoids algorithmic errors. Moreover, RSG built it using software engineering best practices. This reduces the likelihood of bugs and enhances its utility to users. RSG included PopulationSim in the Python-based ActivitySim modeling framework, which we also led the development of.
RSG Director Michelle Lee coauthored a peer-reviewed paper, titled “The 2019 Conference on Health and Active Transportation: Research Needs and Opportunities,” which was published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. The paper discusses expert conclusions from the December 2019 Conference on Health and Active Transportation (CHAT).
Active transportation, which includes activities like bicycling and walking, has well-known public health benefits. These modes, when replacing personal vehicle trips, can also reduce emissions. The COVID-19 pandemic revealed new opportunities for active transportation. At the same time, the pandemic highlighted societal inequities around transportation access and health.
Michelle and her fellow authors present a conceptual model, based on CHAT sessions, that could assist practitioners in overcoming barriers to the development and use of active transportation infrastructure. The paper also identifies crucial research gaps. Importantly, the paper emphasizes the importance of coupling additional research with plans for dissemination and implementation.
Lucia Maloney, PMP, joins RSG as a Director and brings over 15 years of experience in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Her primary interests lie in innovative product delivery for local/regional transportation planning efforts and capital projects. Lucia's experience and expertise will help us continue to offer clients unparalleled insights into household- and person-level travel behavior.
We have officially opened our new downtown Denver, Colorado, office location. The new office signifies continued growth in and demand for RSG's energy and noise control engineering services.
“I'm thrilled to see Denver added to our diverse portfolio of office locations,” said Stephen Lawe, CEO. “As interest in renewables has grown, so has the demand for our services that integrate advanced statistical approaches and modeling with traditional acoustical analyses. Our Denver location will help us meet this demand.”
In addition to our headquarters in White River Junction, Vermont, RSG now has offices in six other locations. These other offices include San Diego (CA), Portland (OR), Chicago (IL), Washington, DC, and Burlington (VT).
RSG celebrates 35 years in business this October. Since 1986, we have combined academic rigor with serious data analysis and computer modeling. Through the dedication of our employee-owners, we have evolved into an innovative consultancy. Our work now helps clients understand why people and systems do what they do and guides their decision-making.
“RSG solves challenging problems. But more than that, we offer our clients solutions grounded in innovative, data-driven methods,” said Stephen Lawe, Chief Executive Officer at RSG. “Every issue facing humanity now involves a complex system. Uniting people with diverse perspectives and backgrounds to tackle the issue at hand—that’s where we excel as a consultancy. We’re innovators at our core, and we have been since day one.”
In the three-and-a-half decades since our founding, we have consulted for Fortune 500 companies and clients at all levels of government while working in all 50 states and over 30 countries. Our unique culture has also won awards that cite our industry-leading benefits and workplace flexibility.
“As RSG celebrates 35 years, I’m thrilled to see the vision that I shared with my two friends and cofounders continue to make a significant and positive impact on the world,” said Tom Adler, PhD, President at RSG. “The system our clients operate in today is much more complex than it was when we started RSG. Now, more than ever, clients require rigorous analysis to guide, support—and, in many cases, defend—their decisions.”
RSG has also established itself as a cutting-edge firm that develops advanced software tools and platforms. We developed our own software (rMove™) to conduct location-aware market research and understand mobility patterns using big data. We have also contributed to the development of several open-source software products in use by clients around the world.
Johanna Zmud, PhD, joins RSG as a Principal and brings 30 years of experience in transportation research, data, technology, and policy. Her recent work has examined public acceptance and socioeconomic impacts of connected and automated vehicles, sociodemographic trends, future travel behavior analysis, and the impacts of technology on society. Johanna's experience and expertise will help us continue to support clients' growing needs around transportation technology and emerging mobility.
Despite the challenges created by the pandemic, the renewable energy market has demonstrated its remarkable resiliency over the past year. In 2020, global investment in clean energy hit $500 billion for the first time. Our noise control engineering services have been integral to the recent approval of six projects totaling nearly 1.5 gigawatts (or 1,500 megawatts) of renewable energy in the United States. The following is a list of renewable energy project approvals in 2021; each of these relied on our noise impact assessment and expert testimony services.
Plum Creek Wind Facility. This 414-megawatt wind project received approval in August 2021 and comprises 74 turbines along with a 31-mile transmission line. The project will generate hundreds of clean energy jobs and tax revenues for local counties.
Nobles Wind Farm. This 201-megawatt wind project received approval in July 2021. This project was unique in that it was an existing wind farm that the facility's operator (Xcel Energy Inc) sought approval to repower. Repowering a wind farm involves replacing the hubs and blades of each turbine.
Emerson Creek Wind Farm. This 297-megawatt wind project received approval in June 2021. Some of the power generated by this facility, which Firelands Wind developed, will power a nearby Google data center.
Morris Ridge Solar Project. This 177-megawatt solar project will help put New York State on the path toward obtaining 70% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030. This was also one of the first projects in the state to follow the new “94-C” process designed to speed up approvals of renewable energy projects.
Arche Energy Project. This 107-megawatt solar project received approval in April 2021. Sponsored by 7X Energy, this project will help increase solar capacity in the state of Ohio, which is expected to see rapid growth in its solar energy market over the next five years.
Yellowbud Solar Project. This 274-megawatt solar project received approval in February 2021. Sponsored by Yellowbud Solar LLC, the project is expected to occupy approximately 1,383 acres once complete.
We applaud the continued shift toward clean and renewable energy generation and congratulates each of our clients on receiving final project approval.
RSG cofounder Dennis Meadows was part of a team of MIT researchers who released a groundbreaking environmental study in 1972. Now, new research conducted by KPMG Director Gaya Herrington and published in Yale Journal of Industrial Ecology has confirmed the findings of Meadows's team's study against current real-world data and trends.
The original report documenting Meadows's findings, titled The Limits to Growth, was based on system dynamics modeling of society's resource use and extraction. In it, Meadows's team looked at then-current trends to predict several future scenarios. Importantly, one of these scenarios was a base case the would result in a decline in both industrial and population capacity. The latest research from KPMG confirms the accuracy of Meadows's team's modeling based on current trends.
RSG created the ridership demand forecasting tool that supported the development of CONNECT NEC 2035 (C35), a recently released $117 billion blueprint to modernize and improve the Northeast Corridor (NEC). C35 details 150 projects to improve rail service in the NEC over the next 15 years. It has involved multiple agencies and has been overseen by the NEC Commission.
The ridership demand forecasts developed by RSG estimated commuter and intercity ridership using a customized elasticity-based ridership tool. This tool incorporated behaviors embedded in existing ridership models. It included demand sensitivities to travel time, service frequency, and fare prices. The tool's outputs helped C35's planners evaluate ridership changes and improvements that would include corridor-level changes in vehicle and passenger miles traveled, travel time savings, and mode shifts to rail (from auto, air, and bus).
The work proposed in C35, if fully funded and completed, would create 1.7 million new jobs and deliver service improvements. These improvements would include a 26-minute reduction in travel time between Washington, DC, and New York City; riders would also see a 28-minute reduction in travel time between New York City and Boston. Importantly, work will result in fewer delays, new direct and express services, and off-peak and reverse-peak trains.
We are thrilled to welcome two director-level hires who will help us meet the growing client demand for our services.
Jeff Frkonja rejoins RSG as a Senior Director. Jeff brings 20 years of experience in travel forecasting, land-use forecasting, model applications, and related analytics for transportation studies. His planning analytics background and project management expertise will help us continue to deliver innovative transportation planning solutions for clients.
John Olszewski joins RSG as a Director. John brings 21 years of experience as a systems architect, software developer, and project manager. His background as a technologist and researcher will help us ensure our client solutions and product offerings are strategic, actionable, and successful.