Gary Toth is a change agent, technical expert, and manager in transportation and land use. He uses placemaking as the catalyst for change. For 47 years he managed and directed organizations involved with shaping the built form of our communities in a more inclusive and equitable manner. 34 of those years were at the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) .
Gary works at the interface between transportation, land use, communities, and the private sector. At NJDOT he served as Director of the unit responsible for project planning and development. He developed the “political engineering” skills needed to create consensus on projects that balanced transportation, community, and economic goals. He became a national leader on the integration of transportation and land use planning. His experience at NJDOT and on committees within AASHTO, TRB and APTA led to develop an intuitive understanding of what makes transportation agencies and their professionals tick.
He spent 14 years at Project for Public Spaces, as a Senior Placemaker, Executive Vice President, and Interim CEO. During this time, he acquired an in depth understanding of placemaking as the key to bringing issues together.
While at the NJDOT, Gary worked closely with New Jersey Transit on multiple projects helping him understand Transit Villages, TOD and how Transit Agencies rely on public roads. He worked with multiple transit agencies as a member of the American Public Transportation Association’s (APTA) Sustainable Urban Design Standards committee.
His people and political skills, strategic planning, and leadership, combined with his thorough understanding of street and network design principles, make him invaluable in negotiating solutions equitable to all parties. He has developed numerous public engagement tools and training, including asset mapping, street typology, street audits, and a “Streets as Places” training curriculum.
Gary served as one of eight certified instructors for the National Highway Institutes Transportation and Land Use Course, a three day program available to state Departments of Transportation, transit and planning agencies.