Select Clients:

  • National Complete Streets Coalition 
  • Island Press
  • Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
  • Natural Resources Defense Council
  • National Association of Realtors
  • Active Living Research
  • ​Smart Growth America

McCann Consulting is no longer accepting clients. This site archives Barbara McCann's work, 2003-2013.

Barbara McCann is a public policy and communications expert who works to bring transportation, land use, and active living issues into the public debate. 

She developed the Complete Streets concept and served as the founding Executive Director of the National Complete Streets Coalition, working with groups from AARP to the YMCA to develop and advance the adoption of policies to make streets safe for all users. McCann co-created the Complete Streets Workshop program and conducted extensive reseach on complete streets policy success. In 2011 the NY/NJ Section of the Institute of Transportation Engineers recognized her with the 2011 Transportation Advancement Award, given annually to a non-engineer "for contributions in advancing transportation programs through outstanding leadership."  By the end of her tenure, the Coalition’s work had resulted in the adoption of laws and policies in 27 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, as well as in more than 400 local U.S. jurisdictions.

Barbara founded McCann Consulting in 2003 to work with government agencies, non-profits, and researchers, authoring numerous reports and articles on transportation, health, and land use. She collaborated with academic, non-profit, private, and government clients to research, analyze and write about policies and methods for improving transportation and land use practices to improve energy, environmental, health, and safety outcomes. Projects included a study to determine the factors that influence Metropolitan Planning Organization investment in non-motorized infrastructure, with final results published in the Journal of the American Planning Association.  She also rewrote and updated a 600-page Transit Cooperative Research Program report into a book for a general audience, Costs of Sprawl.  Most recently, McCann collaborated with Toole Design Group on several projects, including an evaluation of MPO use of the Transportation Alternatives Program.

She previously served as Director of Information and Research at Smart Growth America (SGA), where in collaboration with Reid Ewing she led the development and publication of the first national study to find an association between the built environment and obesity. Prior to working at SGA, Ms. McCann directed a high-profile campaign at the Surface Transportation Policy Project which used federal data to illuminate the impact of transportation policies on everyday life. Her work at STPP included the Mean Streets series on pedestrian safety and other reports from 1998 through 2002. The reports drew extensive attention for government officials, interest groups, and the media, including coverage on all national network evening news shows and stories in every major newspaper in the United States. She worked for 13 years as a writer and producer at Cable News Network, including senior positions on award-winning news programs and newsmagazines. She has served on the District of Columbia Transportation Planning Advisory Board, the WalkScore Advisory Board, and the Board of the Washington Area Bicyclist Association.
   The story of Barbara McCann's leadership of the National Complete Streets Coalition appeared in the 2013 League of American Bicyclists' series on women leaders in bicycling.


An accomplished speaker, McCann has addressed many audiences, including:

Transportation Research Board

National Association of State Legislators


New Partners for Smart Growth

Institute of Transportation Engineers

American Society of Civil Engineers

American Public Works Association

About Barbara McCann

McCann Consulting

Barbara McCann speaks to then-Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood about Complete Streets.  Photo by Steve Davis.