The Eno Center for Transportation (Eno) was founded in 1921 by William Phelps Eno (1859-1945), who pioneered the field of traffic management in the United States and Europe. Mr. Eno sought to promote safe mobility by ensuring that traffic control became an accepted role of government and traffic engineering a recognized professional discipline.
Eno focuses on all modes of transportation, with the mission of cultivating creative and visionary leadership for the sector. We pursue this mission by supporting activities in three areas: professional development programs, policy forums, and publications.
Eno is a non-profit charitable foundation, recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3). It is an operating foundation and does not make grants. Less than a quarter of the Foundation’s work is supported by its endowment; the remainder is supported by tuition and fees, contracts, and publication sales.
In order to make the best use of its resources, the Foundation often works in partnership with government agencies, professional organizations, and other private organizations.
The Eno Center for Transportation’s mission is to cultivate creative leadership and to impact emerging issues for the nation’s multi-modal transportation system.
The Eno Center for Transportation’s vision is for an American transportation system that fosters economic vitality and improves the quality of life for all.
Our Core Principles
As an organization, Eno values integrity, independence, objectivity, quality, and relevance. These core values are reflected in everything we do.
William Phelps Eno
William Phelps Eno (1858-1945) was an internationally recognized pioneer in traffic control and regulation. Dubbed the “Father of Traffic Safety,” Eno developed the first traffic plans for major cities including New York, London, and Paris, and is credited with helping to invent and popularize stop signs, taxi stands, pedestrian safety islands, and other traffic features commonly used throughout the world.
Eno started out in his family’s real estate business, but his interest in transportation led him to concentrate his spare time on traffic reform. In 1899, at the age of 40, he left real estate behind and devoted the rest of his life to implementing his concepts for sane and orderly transportation. His “rules of the road,” adopted by New York City in 1909, became the world’s first city traffic plan. He also wrote the first-ever manual of police traffic regulations.
Eno gradually embraced multimodal transportation interests. He developed a plan for subways in New York City long before anyone else seriously considered the concept. He also became interested in maritime activities, supported railroad development, and instigated research in the 1920s on the future impact of aviation. In 1921, he chartered and endowed the Eno Transportation Foundation to attract the thinking of other transportation experts and specialists and to provide a forum for unbiased discussions that would lead to improvements in the movement of people and goods.
Eno died in 1945 at the age of 86. Ironically, he never drove a car during his lifetime. The Father of Traffic Safety, an avid horseback rider, distrusted automobiles.