Reconnecting America People * Places * Possibility

Welcoming Chris Yake

Reconnecting America today welcomed Chris Yake to its Washington, DC, staff. As project director, Yake will lead Reconnecting America's place-based work on the East Coast, working with diverse stakeholders in cities and regions to support transit-oriented development (TOD) planning and implementation. He will also lend his expertise to guide quantitative and qualitative research projects, managing multi-disciplinary teams working on subjects related to transit-oriented development, transit performance, urban form and travel behavior.

“I am delighted to welcome Chris Yake as part of the Reconnecting America family,” said Reconnecting America President and CEO John Robert Smith. “His background in transit-oriented development and successful track record in communicating with various stakeholders will be of great benefit to our team as we continue to fulfill our mission of transforming promising ideas into thriving communities.”

Yake comes to Reconnecting America from Portland Metro's TOD program, where he served as senior development project manager, leading its TOD Strategic Plan and working directly with the private sector to leverage development near transit. Prior to Metro, Chris worked across the country on TOD at all scales as an urban economist in Annapolis, MD, with Basile, Baumann and Prost Associates and a senior planner with the City & County of Denver. Committed to fostering transit and livable communities from inception to actual construction, his work has ranged from long-range regional and corridor visioning, alternatives analysis, and station area planning down to on-the-ground capital transit projects and vertical mixed-use development.

“Chris brings with him a wealth of experience having worked in different communities across the country helping to implement strategies to support equitable TOD,” said Allison Brooks, Reconnecting America chief of staff. “His passion for this work and in ensuring people of all incomes benefit from better access to opportunity makes him a great addition to our team”

Yake received his Master’s in City & Regional Planning from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a concentration in land use and transportation planning. He has a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from Gonzaga University.