This week, the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) announced that five regional planning and development organizations have received Governor John Kasich’s designation as Regional Transportation Planning Organizations (RTPOs), according to U.S. Code, Title 23, Section 135 (m). This federal statute refers to the definition of RTPOs that was included for the first time in the 2012 surface transportation authorization known as Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century, or MAP-21.
The designated RTPOs include Buckeye Hills-Hocking Valley Regional Development District, Logan-Union-Champaign Regional Planning Commission (LUC), Maumee Valley Planning Organization, Ohio Mid-Eastern Governments Association (OMEGA), and Ohio Valley Regional Development Commission.
Ohio’s RTPOs began as two-year pilot projects in 2013, establishing transportation committees and completing their first regional transportation plans, and new two-year contracts added more responsibilities in 2015. In addition to its investments in the RTPOs’ planning processes, ODOT has invested in their professional growth by providing support to neighboring MPOs to serve as mentors to the new RTPOs since 2013. This mentor network has resulted in close relationships between the rural transportation planning professionals and metropolitan planning staff, who have offered guidance on a range of organizational issues and technical analyses.
For more information, visit http://www.dot.state.oh.us/Divisions/Planning/SPR/StatewidePlanning/Pages/RTPO.aspx.