Washington, DC – Kanathur N. (Kanti) Srikanth, a well-respected leader in transportation planning with thorough knowledge of the National Capital Region, has been named the Director of Transportation Planning for the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG). Srikanth is currently the Director of Transportation Planning for the Northern Virginia District of the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT). He will succeed the late Ronald F. Kirby, one of the region’s leading experts on transportation planning, who served in this position from 1987 to 2013.
As Director of Transportation Planning, Srikanth will work as Staff Director to the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board (TPB), the region’s federally-designated metropolitan planning organization. The TPB, an independent body housed and staffed by COG, is responsible for preparing plans and programs that the U.S. Department of Transportation must approve in order for the region to receive federal transportation funding. Srikanth will oversee an $18 million annual budget and manage a staff of 60 employees in COG’s Department of Transportation Planning, which supports the TPB and its associated committees.
Srikanth has more than 25 years of experience in transportation planning in the region, and he has served in various roles for VDOT since 1994. For much of this time span, he has been involved in planning activities at COG and the TPB and worked closely with Kirby.
“Kanti Srikanth is a transportation leader, who deeply understands the transportation planning process in our complex region," said College Park Councilmember Patrick Wojahn, who is currently serving as Chairman of the Transportation Planning Board. "I am confident that Kanti will help us build a stronger region by effectively coordinating planning activities among our numerous local, state, and federal partners, regional authorities, stakeholders and community groups."
“Kanti is a collaborative, diplomatic leader, who can bring people together and help develop consensus among a wide range of perspectives, including those of urban, suburban, and rural communities, supporters of different transportation modes and advocates for underrepresented groups,” said Fairfax County Supervisor Catherine Hudgins, a current TPB member and past Chairman.
Srikanth has overseen all administrative areas of the VDOT district’s planning office, served as the lead point of contact for all planning activities for the office and participated on various state and regional policy and technical committees. He is also experienced in the conformity process that ensures that federal funding goes to transportation activities that are consistent with air quality goals.
“Kanti's knowledge and strong grounding in planning will help the TPB enhance its reputation as an impartial authority on transportation, and as a hub of information to guide sound decision-making,” said District of Columbia Council Chairman Phil Mendelson, a current TPB member, past Chairman, and current Chairman of the COG Board of Directors.
“Kanti is driven by his pursuit of the big picture without losing sight of the details. This will serve COG and the TPB well as we build on recent initiatives like our Region Forward vision and the Regional Transportation Priorities Plan to foster more comprehensive planning that better connects transportation, land use, the environment and other areas,” said COG Executive Director Chuck Bean.
Srikanth received a Master of Science degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Maryland, College Park, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Bangalore University in India. The Council of Governments conducted a nationwide search for this position and received more than 45 applications.
Srikanth will officially join the Council of Governments on August 6.