Remote Work and Transportation—Fad or Future?

Tuesday, June 29, 2021, 10:00 am–12:00 pm

About the Webinar

The pandemic has had a major impact on transportation, including a massive shift toward working from home. At the outset of the public health crisis, a significant number of people across the country were able to trade their commutes for telecommuting to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. The remote work trend is presenting major challenges and opportunities for both employers and employees in a variety of areas, including equity, staff recruitment/onboarding/retention, legal issues, accessibility, ADA, and parking changes.

In addition, the remote work trend is reshaping the agencies and organizations who design, deliver, operate, and maintain transportation infrastructure and services. It challenges long-held assumptions about how they do their work in serving the citizens and businesses they support.

This special webinar hosted by the five CTS councils highlighted these trends and impacts and explored how telecommuting is shaping the future of transportation.

Webinar Materials


Katie Walker
Adeel Lari

Adeel Lari is the director of Institute for Urban and Regional Infrastructure Finance at the University of Minnesota's Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs. Lari previously was employed by the Minnesota Department of Transportation for about 30 years, where he managed offices like Research, Public Private Partnerships, and Innovative Financing.

Katie Walker currently serves as the Minnesota Department of Transportation’s director of innovation and research. In this role, she is charged with creating a culture where research, innovation, and analysis bridges today with tomorrow to improve the quality of life for Minnesotans. Prior to joining MnDOT, Walker served in a variety of roles at state, regional, and local governments, including stints as a planner for Metro Transit/Metropolitan Council, Dakota County, and the 494 Corridor Coalition.  

David Unmacht
Kristin Thompson
Duane Hill

Duane Hill is the MnDOT district engineer in MnDOT District 1. In this role, he leads planning, project development, construction, operations, and maintenance of the state highway network in northeastern Minnesota.

Kristin Thompson is the assistant director of service development at Metro Transit. She oversees operational analysis, scheduling, and service budgeting for the agency’s multimodal transit system, as well as initiatives to improve bus speed and reliability. As an undergraduate at Macalester College, Thompson studied abroad in Amsterdam, which sparked her interest in building communities that center transit, bicycling, and walking. She subsequently earned a Master of Urban & Regional Planning degree from the Humphrey School at the University of Minnesota.

David Unmacht is the executive director of the League of Minnesota Cities.


  • Gina Baas, Center for Transportation Studies, University of Minnesota
  • Lisa Austin, Transportation Planner, MnDOT; Vice Chair, CTS Planning and the Economy Research Council