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American Cities Climate Challenge

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The Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge is an initiative to reduce emissions in 25 of America’s largest cities.

Cities account for more than 70% of global carbon emissions and mayors have significant authority over two of the highest-emitting sectors: transportation and buildings. Since 2019, the Climate Challenge has put these two facts to work, providing expert support to cities working to realize their aggressive carbon reduction goals.

Through policy development, program management, and on-the-ground projects, participating cities across America are demonstrating the critical role local governments play in tackling climate change. Due to their dedication, vision, and collective action over the past three years, Climate Challenge cities are on track to reduce 74 million metric tons of emissions through 2030. Read more about their progress from 2019-201 here (pdf) >>

NACTO’s Role
With transportation as the largest single sector of carbon emissions in the US, implementing projects that reduce reliance on personal vehicles is critical to addressing climate change. The fastest and simplest way to reduce transportation emissions? Drive less. But driving less is only viable if transit, walking, and biking get you where you need to go safely, conveniently, and reliably.

Since 2019, NACTO has supported the 25 Climate Challenge cities by providing broader technical and policy guidance across the Climate Challenge network, city-specific workshops and trainings, 1:1 office hours with city staff, and in-depth “Accelerator” support in six cities.

Into 2022, NACTO is focused on generating opportunities for peer connection and learning, to ensure that the networks built and lessons learned since 2019 continue to make a lasting impactand create replicable examples for other climate-forward citiesinto the future.

NACTO Climate Challenge Fact Sheet >>

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Trainings and Charrettes


Safe Speeds, Day 1 (2/2/2022)
Safe Speeds, Day 2 (2/10/2022)
Projects to Programs, Session 1 (4/1/2022)
Projects to Programs, Session 2 (4/8/2022)
Agency Structure, San Antonio (6/9 & 6/11/2021)
Transit Metrics & Messaging, Cincinnati (5/27 & 6/3/2021)
Complete Streets Communications, St. Petersburg (5/19 & 5/26/2021)
Equitable & Inclusive Engagement, St. Louis (5/18 & 5/19/2021)

Design Trainings

Cincinnati (3/3/2020)
St. Petersburg (12/13/2019)
Honolulu (11/15/2019)


Minneapolis (8/10/2020)
Charlotte (7/29/2020)
Washington, DC (3/11/2020)
Philadelphia (2/28/2020)
San José  (12/11/2019)
Saint Paul (11/1/2019)
Honolulu (8/14/2019)
San Diego (7/8/2019)


Charleston (3/31/2021)
Philadelphia (8/24/2020)

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NACTO's City Accelerator Program

NACTO’s City Accelerator program helps cities rapidly implement high-quality transit or bike corridors, from design to build out. Since 2014, the program has provided in-depth, on-the-ground support to member cities implementing new street design projects that may depart from existing practice.

Whether a red bus lane or protected bike lane, undertaking new projects requires changing business as usual. Under Accelerators, NACTO helps cities develop the new partnerships and pathways needed to implement these projects, bringing together the rich peer network to help cities move projects from idea to implementation through lasting programmatic change.

Transit Program Accelerators

Better Bikeways Accelerators

Through the Climate Challenge, NACTO partnered with six cities–Atlanta, Boston, Denver, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, and San Antonio–to accelerate the implementation of high-quality bike or transit corridors. From 2019-2020, this approach provided targeted support to help each city rapidly develop new transportation infrastructure and the internal procedures to continue building impactful projects past the Climate Challenge.

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