A long-standing spatial mismatch has received significant attention between predominantly African American neighborhoods in the central city of Milwaukee and a large suburban employment center 15 miles northwest. Conventional fixed-route bus services were implemented but determined to be inefficient, so they were discontinued. Thus, the labor force (including employed workers and unemployed workers who are actively looking for jobs) and employers continue to struggle with the spatial mismatch. By adopting a fundamentally different approach that is bottom-up—focusing on the core users and their respective needs, this CIVIC Planning Grant (PG) will develop two pilot programs of User-Centered Mobility Solutions (UCMS), which integrate new mobility technologies, including transport network companies (TNCs) and micro-transit (e.g., Via), to directly address mobility needs of two types of core users—the labor force and employers. If successful, this project will serve as a new user-centered model for other U.S. metropolitan areas with significant spatial mismatches.

Project Details

Project ID


Start Date
January 15, 2021

End Date
June 30, 2020

Focus Areas
Economy and Policy
Urban Mobility

National Science Foundation

Research Centers
Institute for Physical Infrastructure and Transportation (IPIT)

Principal Investigator

Hu, Lingqian
Professor and Chair Department of Urban Planning University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Co-Principal Investigator

Schneider, Robert J
Associate Professor Department of Urban Planning University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee