Roanoke Valley Alleghany Regional Commission’s first ever Congestion Management Process (CMP) Plan was approved by the Roanoke Valley Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (RVAMPO) on January 23, 2014. The CMP Plan is a new federal requirement for RVAMPO, due to its designation as a Transportation Management Area (TMA) MPO – after the population of the region’s urbanized area topped 200,000 inhabitants.
The Regional Commission and its staff viewed this new requirement as an opportunity to get ahead of future traffic congestion issues. The resulting plan is truly multi-modal in nature and works to coordinate planning efforts by incorporating strategies from existing local comprehensive plans and regional corridor, greenway, and bicycle plans. The Regional Commission also took advantage of free data and technology tools offered by Google throughout the planning process. First, the CMP was drafted in Google Drive so that multiple staff members could work on the plan at the same time, thus removing workflow bottlenecks and allowing the planning process to be both efficient and effective within the limited time and budget constraints. Secondly, staff members developed a procedure to take snapshots of Google Traffic coverage for the area over several months at different times of day to determine the top 10 hot spots for traffic congestion. Incorporating existing plans into this new planning effort and using freely available technology and data to transform the planning process not only results in a stronger plan for the region, but it also showcases highly replicable strategies that can benefit any region in their future planning efforts.
The CMP Plan was awarded a 2014 Excellence in Regional Transportation Award. View descriptions of other award winning projects here.