I started Alta in 1996 with the idea of providing high quality planning and design services exclusively in the non-motorized transportation field, rather than as a sideline. My feeling then and today is that bicycle and walking are only the indicators of healthy communities, and that cities and towns around the world all desired healthier citizens, economies, and transportation systems. My goal with Alta was to have a firm not dominated by a single person, but rather a group of motivated, sharp, and passionate owners. The name ‘Alta’ was chosen because of its positive Spanish connotation (‘high’ or ‘on top of’), its historic connotation (Alta California), and its international flavor, but mostly because it was simple and I liked the way it sounded!
Michael Jones is the founder of Alta Planning + Design, and is recognized as one of the top experts in the world in the areas of bicycle, pedestrian, and trail planning and design. He has managed more than 1,000 studies since 1985, ranging from major national, state, and regional plans to corridor studies to plans for small towns. Michael is has developed innovative methodologies and models for topics such as bicycle demand, bike share, GIS-linked roadway suitability, and shared-use parking. He has presented to and been published by the Institute of Transportation Engineers, the American Planning Association, the American Society of Landscape Architects, and the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy.