Intro: Simon Tan

I’m a recently graduated urban planner, inspired to build safe and sustainable transportation options for the communities I serve. Currently helping Sound Transit execute one of the largest public transit system expansions in North America.

I previously had a run as a product manager in the software industry. I worked for companies including Dropbox, Atlassian, Box, and Microsoft, specializing in mobile & enterprise productivity SaaS (cloud software).

While I’m passionate about the future of work and mobile productivity, I left the tech industry in 2020 to pursue my other lifelong passion in urban planning, where I have much more to learn and new ways to grow. I’ve been involved with nonprofits such as SPUR, SF Transit Riders, and Seamless Bay Area for years, but now I’m taking this hobby to the next level.

Brisk mobility largely defined my style as a product manager in tech, and I anticipate this is an element I will carry with me as I enter this new field. I look forward to documenting the journey here and invite you to connect and offer any advice or suggestions along the way!

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Recent Posts

Handling Tax-Exempt Investment Income with H&R Block

It’s tax return filing season in the United States, and the anticompetitive tax preparation companies are being less than helpful as usual. If you trade stocks and bonds in the markets (or more wisely just use a roboadvisor like Wealthfront or Betterment), you may be scratching your head when it comes to reporting tax-exempt income…

What Roles Can Planners Play?

So you’ve developed an interest in urban planning, started pursuing higher education to become a certified planner, or just want to know how you can get more involved in your local community’s planning decisions? The good news is that there is a wide range of possible roles for aspiring urban planners – but for those…

On Quiet Quitting

As someone who has thought a lot about worker productivity & engagement over the years, watching the #QuietQuitting trend unfold across the globe over the past few months has been fascinating.


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