CRA invites public input on updated transportation demand management plan

By David Pendered

The Atlanta Regional Commission is conducting an online survey of commuter mobility patterns as the start of a two-year effort to update the region’s program to improve air quality and reduce traffic congestion. traffic.

April 8 is the deadline to respond to the first survey, which is part of CRA’s Mobility Connections: A Plan for Expanding Opportunity project. This is ARC’s version of a transport demand management plan, which aims to include habitability and economic issues in addition to the two core functions of air quality and mobility. .

The survey is presented in a multiple-choice format. It takes a few minutes to complete and asks basic questions about how respondents travel to and from their destinations.

Topics include how to get to school or work; whether the mode changed during the pandemic and is expected to change again; was the mode selected for its speed, comfort, rapidity, etc.; and how the respondent learns about transportation options.

The toughest question comes at the conclusion: “What do you think will be the biggest impact on transportation in Metro Atlanta in the future?”

The answers provided to this question are: “Expanding public transit; New or constantly increasing dedicated funding; Technology (including emerging technologies such as autonomous vehicles); Increase in remote work; Population growth; Land use decisions (including densification and expansion of living/work/leisure endeavors).

The information provided by respondents should help form the basis of the TDM plan that ARC intends to complete by 2023.

The primary purpose of a TDM was defined as early as 1994 by the Federal Highway Administration.

“Quite simply,” states the 1994 definition, “TDM programs are designed to maximize the people-moving capacity of the transportation system by increasing the number of people in a vehicle or by affecting the duration or need to travel. . To accomplish these types of changes, TDM programs must rely on incentives or disincentives to make these behavior changes attractive.

Civic and political leaders in the Atlanta metropolitan area have implemented some of the measures described in the 1994 report. They include employer subsidies for using public transit, preferential parking for carpoolers, and drop-off programs guaranteed home visits for workers who can be called home to deal with an emergency. Some companies had allowed flexible hours, and the COVID-19 shutdowns resulted in widespread telecommuting models for companies where possible.

ARC wants the final plan to improve collaboration between transport demand and transport management. The historic divide between TMD and transport management has blurred in recent years. TDM involves changing behaviors to avoid overloading the capacity of roads and public transit to serve commuters. Transportation management involves mobility-related efforts that can include maximizing existing infrastructure, such as turning roadside emergency lanes into traffic lanes, counting ramps to control flow on freeways and the rapid resolution of collisions to clear traffic lanes.

ARC offers this description of the purpose of the study which begins with the survey: “SLM offers the region the ability to achieve better environmental outcomes, connect people with critical opportunities and services, improve public health and social equity, foster stronger communities and create more prosperous and livable places.

Click on here to learn more about the program and access the survey.

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