The current 2012 Transportation Plan is a .pdf document that can be downloaded here:
The primary role of the Transportation Plan is to estimate the future transportation needs of the community so that decisions made today are taking us to where we need to be tomorrow. The Transportation Plan covers a period of twenty-five years.
The planning process behind the creation of a transportation plan involves multiple steps and issues.
The first step for any planning process is an examination of the base conditions. This involves looking at both the current situation as well as past planning that has led you to the current conditions. Typical questions to ask include:
- Where are we today?
- What are our current transportation network strengths and weaknesses?
- What were the elements of transportation plans of the past?
- What was and was not done as a result of past plans?
- What from past plans still needs to be done?
- Once the base (or current) conditions have been examined, then the process of charting the future begins. Many different aspects must be considered such as future demographics and growth patterns of the community. Typical questions that must be answered are:
- How many people will live here in twenty five years?
- How old will these people be?
- In what industry segments will they work?
- Where and in what will they live?
- How much money will they earn?
The demographic data is translated into numbers of households. Using guidance from the comprehensive land usage plans, the future growth of the area is estimated. This data serves as the basis for estimating travel demand. In other words, how much road capacity is needed to support our future driving habits?
To all of this we then make estimates of future trends in transportation. Will people drive more or less in the future? Will there be rail service in Columbus in twenty five years? Will people bicycle more in the future?
Community values are then added to the puzzle. These are recorded via direct input from the public and data collection from other planning efforts.
With all of this (and more), decisions about how much of what kind of infrastructure needs to be where and by when, can be made.