A Farewell to Rich Barone

After 11 years at RPA, our Vice President of Transportation Rich Barone will be moving on to a new opportunity. Over the last decade, Rich has been an essential part of RPA’s research team, with pioneering reports on large-scale infrastructure, goods movement and transit technology. He is one of the region’s foremost experts on a wide range of transportation topics from subway signals to aviation.  

Rich joined RPA in 2007, working directly with Peter W. Herman Chair for Transportation Jeff Zupan. Under Jeff’s mentorship, Rich grew into his role leading RPA’s transportation team. He was a lead author of several of RPA’s most impactful studies, on topics as varied as reimagining the region’s airports, adopting new signaling technology for the subway system, integrating the commuter rail system into one network, improving goods movement, and preparing for technology-enabled vehicles.  

Rich also led the development of the transportation recommendations in RPA’s Fourth Regional Plan, proposing groundbreaking ideas such as Trans-Regional Express (T-REX), new designs for Kennedy and Newark airports, reforms to build rail transit faster for less, and just recently, complementing New York City Transit’s “Fast Forward” plan with more specific proposals to create healthier stations and a better experience for riders.

Here’s what a few of Rich’s colleagues had to say about him:

“Rich – You have spent the last 11 years at RPA reinforcing the finest traditions of RPA through your research, analysis and the written word and your growing ability to communicate to the outside world the complexities of transportation policies, programs and projects. You have served the New York region well and RPA will be miss your guidance as we face ever more perplexing transportation decisions and choices for the region and for RPA.” – Jeff Zupan, Peter W. Herman Chair for Transportation

“Rich brings dedication and a depth and breadth of knowledge to everything he undertakes. His work at RPA will influence transportation planners and make the New York region a better place to live and work for years, if not decades, to come.” – Chris Jones, Senior Vice President & Chief Planner 

“Rich seems to know every mile of every track in this region, and maybe every road and runway too. If I don’t know why something is the way it is, I always know who to ask.” – Juliette Michaelson, Executive Vice President

“Rich’s impact from his 11 years at RPA will be realized not only through the deeply and thoughtfully researched reports and transformative ideas that will ultimately improve the region’s transportation systems, but perhaps more importantly through the achievements of the many people for whom he served as boss, mentor, influencer and friend. Keep up the good work, my friend!” – Rob Freudenberg, Vice President for Energy & Environment

“Rich has always been a great collaborator whose passion and excitement about his work along with his desire to present it in a compelling way, made him a delight to work with as a designer and challenged you to be better at what you do.” – Ben Oldenburg, Senior Graphic Designer

Rich, thank you so much for your hard work, dedication and service to RPA over these last 11 years. You have made an incredible mark on so many, not just here at RPA, but across our region.

You will be sorely missed here at RPA. We wish you the best in the next chapter!


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