Inside Seven
Current Issue: April 2014
article
Directors Zone

Director's Zone

Issue Date: 04/2010

Mike Miles


Like many state agencies, Caltrans is in transition. We’re evolving from an agency formerly viewed as a large transportation bureaucracy to one better described as a transportation consultant, a consultant that leverages business discipline to maximize performance.

How do we frame our work in District 7 to reflect a consulting model? I believe the answer has three parts: partnerships, efficiency and customer service. By focusing on these elements, we’re able to serve as excellent stewards of the investment our stakeholders make in us.

Our partnerships are vital to our work because we can accomplish far more cooperatively than we can alone. That’s why I’m committed to developing our relationships with local and regional transportation agencies, such as the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the Ventura County Transportation Commission. Partnering with other agencies allows us to achieve cost and time savings that would be unattainable without a joint effort. The Ronald Reagan Freeway (SR-118) widening project, which you’ll read about in this issue of Inside 7, is just one example of a successful partnership.

To be good partners we need to be as efficient as possible and provide superior customer service. That means making sure we have accurate schedules and cost estimates. It means keeping our customers informed about our progress and any unforeseen circumstance that might create a delay or cost increase. And on an individual level, it means making sure we all charge our time correctly, fill out expense forms properly, and ensure that our time cards are timely and accurate.

Focusing on partnerships, efficiency and customer service are particularly important as we implement the “complete streets” initiative. Caltrans views all transportation improvements as opportunities to enhance safety, access, and mobility for everyone. Providing safe mobility for all users, including motorists, bicyclists, pedestrians, those with special needs, and transit riders contributes to our mission of "Improving Mobility Across California.”

As we move forward, we’ll be looking for ways to build networks that are safer, more livable, and welcoming. Working together, I have full confidence that we can build an inclusive urban transportation infrastructure in District 7 that will become a model nationwide.