September 30, 2015

By: ioby

New York, NY

ioby (In Our Backyards), a n online platform for citizen­led, neighbor­funded projects and TransitCenter, a civic philanthropy that supports efforts to improve urban transportation through innovation, released a joint report today on the results of their year­long “Trick Out My Trip” campaign. Launched in October 2014, the joint campaign facilitated rider­led, rapidly­implemented, and inexpensive improvements to public transit, while encouraging cooperation between communities and transit agencies. Projects took place in seven metropolitan areas and ranged from the creation and installation of a wayfinding signage system in Denver through collaborative community mapping, to a pop­up event around a busy Brooklyn subway station, which imagined long­term rider amenities and streetscape improvements. All projects were proposed, funded, and implemented in less than 12 months. 

“‘Trick Out My Trip’ shows that with the right training and support, anyone can take action to make not only make their their bus or train ride more efficient but more enjoyable. Even more important, by organizing, fundraising, and carrying out quick fixes, these ten teams of ordinary citizens got transit decisionmakers to take notice,” said ioby Co­Founder and Executive Director Erin Barnes. “We’re grateful to TransitCenter for having the vision to enable citizen leaders to make positive change with lasting impact.” 

Major achievements highlighted in the report include:

  • Ten groups raised a total of $53,596 for their projects, including $26,152 in matching funds provided by TransitCenter.

  • Project fundraising totals ranged from $534 to $8,828, while the average individual donation was less than $75.

  • Each of the project leaders reported that a partner in either city government or the local transit agency was involved in the implementation of the project, with seven out of ten receiving technical assistance or guidance from the agencies. This cooperation is notable because in several of the cities the relationship between riders and agencies has historically been strained.

  • In two cases, this citizen­agency collaboration contributed to a shift in transit agency decision­making and laid the groundwork for meaningful policy changes. 

The report indicates that the impact of the Trick Out My Trip campaign extends well beyond the dollar amounts raised, or even the number of riders whose transit experience was improved. These citizen­led campaigns have resulted in an enhanced transit experience for the larger community; have increased capacity for citizen leaders to work with transit agencies, fundraise, and organize; and have helped to foster a cultural shift in transit agencies towards more meaningful, more effective community participation.

"These ten projects represent exactly the kind of rider­led change that's critical to pushing transit progress,” said Shin­pei Tsay, Director of Research & Development at TransitCenter. "We hope that this report will show other civic leaders what's possible in their own cities, and foster more citizen­led movements that will improve the relationships between communities and their local governments and transit agencies while also advancing public transportation." 

To download the full report and executive summary please visit:­out­my­trip.

For more information or to speak to ioby or TransitCenter experts about the report and the Trick out My Trip campaign, please contact Katie Lorah at 917.282.7671 / or Kyle Moler at 202.478.6173 /


About TransitCenter

TransitCenter is a foundation committed to improving urban mobility. TransitCenter believes new approaches are needed to change the urban landscape and empower communities, policymakers, businesses, and riders to take action. TransitCenter works through research, convenings, collaborations, and publications that inform and improve the practice of planning, financing, and operating transit that bolsters the overall vitality of our cities. For more information please visit