Transportation planning starts with understanding where people are going to and coming from. These destinations, or “trip generators” as planners like to call them, are sometimes near where people live and sometimes not. When trip generators are concentrated in areas with high population we call these areas “activity centers”. A goal of the Encompass 2035 long-range transportation plan is the integration of land use and transportation planning for more active, healthy communities. The plan identifies strategies to achieve this goal including promoting alternative transportation modes and increasing accessibility to and between regional activity centers.
To support this goal and other transportation projects such as the Regional Transit Dialogue, Commuter Corridors Study and the Regional Trails Plan, ACOG will soon begin working on a Regional Activity Centers map. The map will identify regionally significant activity centers and their relationship to existing and planned transportation networks.
With a map of existing activity centers at hand, we can further discourse on higher density, mixed-use development in our region and recommend areas with the greatest potential for future activity centers. We will seek to develop a consensus on areas that are most ripe for transit-supportive development and use this information to guide future regional land use scenario planning efforts.
It is anticipated that the Areawide Planning and Technical Advisory Committee, or APTAC, will play a significant advisory role in the creation of the map.