Sustainability testbed The Ray focuses on new strategies in partnership with Cityfi


The Ray, a nonprofit organization advancing net-zero transportation and energy infrastructure with public agencies, has announced a formal engagement with Cityfi to expand and accelerate The Ray’s project execution, and enhance growth nationally through forward-thinking policy and public affairs.

Cityfi’s unique approach combines business strategy, public affairs, and deep subject matter expertise to create tangible impact for organizations and coalitions. Cityfi is a majority women and minority-owned organization.

Cityfi’s team of former public officials, technologists, and entrepreneurs are experienced in developing smart, connected transportation and technology hubs, scaling zero-emissions transportation with clean fuels and clean energy assets, and navigating state and local procurement.

Currently, The Ray, located on 18 miles of Interstate 85 between Lagrange, Georgia and the Georgia-Alabama state line, works in 29 US states with over 50 public agencies to evaluate infrastructure innovations and technologies, provide technical advice and unique planning tools to bridge knowledge gaps, and facilitate projects from concept to construction.

Transportation is the leading sector contributing to greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S., and transportation costs are the second largest annual household expense.

The Ray’s net-zero mission is to build smarter, safer and cleaner infrastructure in the transportation and energy sectors. Recent successes include pollinator-friendly roadside solar arrays in Augusta, ME, connected and autonomous vehicle infrastructure in Austin, TX, and tire safety monitoring stations across Florida.

Allie Kelly

“The Ray’s research and thought leadership role in land use, natural capital, circularity, and how to leverage the clean energy economy into our transportation systems positions us to drive the national discussion and drive faster project development at the local and state level,” said Allie Kelly, executive director of The Ray. “Our strategic partnership with Cityfi and focus on stakeholder engagement will scale projects and new solutions.”

By leveraging the transportation planning, infrastructure deployment and policy expertise of Cityfi, The Ray can accelerate the progress and growth of its signature programs, including:

  • The utilization of transportation “rights-of-way” for solar arrays and the electrical grid;
  • Supporting connected and autonomous vehicle deployment with roadway sensors, radios and data management systems;
  • Expanding re-uses of scrap tire material in sustainable pavements and stormwater management and infiltration galleries.

“For the most economically disadvantaged individuals in America, the financial burden of transportation is disproportionately and unsustainably high,” said Andrew Wishnia, partner with CityFi. “The impact of The Ray’s work is magnified in low-income communities, where public health and quality of life are far more greatly affected by transportation and infrastructure, and creates the opportunity for Cityfi to assist The Ray in initiating equitable and long-term sustainable development.”

Net-zero transportation encompasses a range of solutions for transportation infrastructure owners and users, including improved community design, efficient travel options, zero-emission vehicles and supporting infrastructure, clean energy deployment along transportation rights-of-way, and natural capital solutions like vegetation management for enhanced carbon sequestration in roadside soils.

“The Ray is transforming the way transportation infrastructure is built,” said Harriet Anderson Langford, founder and president of The Ray. “Together, The Ray and Cityfi will help pave the way for a more sustainable future, where transportation and energy work harmoniously to minimize environmental impact and help communities thrive.”

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About Author


Tom has edited Traffic Technology International (TTi) magazine and its Traffic Technology Today website since May 2014. During his time at the title, he has interviewed some of the top transportation chiefs at public agencies around the world as well as CEOs of leading multinationals and ground-breaking start-ups. Tom's earlier career saw him working on some the UK's leading consumer magazine titles. He has a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).