We met many great leaders in transportation while attending this year’s annual Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (AMPO) conference in October.
It was an inspiring three days to learn about the problems MPOs face in the United States and a chance to discuss what they are doing to bring value to their constituents.
Two common questions seemed to run throughout the conference:
- How do we anticipate the future needs of our community and accurately assess what is already in place?
- How can we make the most of our available dollars?
There is an urgent need to uncover the best tools and methods to deliver transportation plans that can evolve with the constant changes in technology, politics, and economics. It is a dynamic challenge that also happens to be severely resource constrained.
The majority of cities are already planning for 10-25 years in the future but it won’t be a static plan that you can create once and walk away. Dave Bruffy, manager of the Mountain Line Transit Authority in WV, recently spoke with Mass Transit Magazine and said, “We're not in a crisis yet, but we don't want to get to a crisis," emphasizing the need to plan ahead.
In an effort not to fall behind, how does your transportation agency identify the best projects and initiatives for implementation?