MTPO Futures 2040 Topeka Regional Transportation Plan Open Houses Announced

From the Metropolitan Topeka Planning Organization, August 11, 2016

Furtures2040 logo

(Topeka, KS) -  The Metropolitan Topeka Planning Organization (MTPO), along with the consulting team of RDG Planning & Design, WSP/Parsons Brinckerhoff and Venice Communications, Inc., is developing Futures2040, the Topeka Regional Transportation Plan.  Futures2040 will guide major transportation decisions for the Topeka region in the coming years by forecasting future travel demand.  It will ultimately include a list of transportation projects proposed for local/state/federal funding that are regionally significant. Futures2040 will be completed by April 2017.

In order to engage the public to determine priorities, two public open houses will be held Thursday, Aug. 18, at the Topeka Public Library, 1515 S.W. 10th Ave. in the Marvin Auditorium, Room 101B.  The first will be held between Noon and 2:00 p.m. and the second will be held between 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.  The consultants will share a quick presentation at the start of each open house, and the rest of the time will be an informal setting where the public can ask questions of the consulting team and share their comments via the online survey or comment forms available at the meeting.

There are two primary purposes for developing Futures2040 for the metropolitan Topeka region. The first is to plan for and provide a balanced transportation network that accommodates all modes of transportation: walking, bicycling, riding transit and driving cars and trucks. The second is to consider how transportation impacts land use, social justice, economic development, urban design and the environment. 

It is imperative that Futures2040 reflect the desires of the people who live, work, shop and play in the metropolitan Topeka region. The project is kicking off the first phase of public engagement in the next two months by offering four opportunities for people to get involved including:

Public Survey
An easy way for the public to share their transportation concerns and ideas is to complete a simple online survey that is available at the MTPO website at www.topekampo.org.

Online Interactive Map
The public can also use an interactive map at www.topekampo.org to pinpoint specific transportation issues and concerns within the region.

Social Media Campaign
Another opportunity for input is for the public to share their transportation issues and concerns and ideas by posting on the following social media portals: Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. The public is invited to post pictures from around the metropolitan Topeka region of their transportation issues and concerns. Use the hashtag #Futures2040 within the posts. Turn on the location feature (geotag) on the camera or cellphone. The consulting team will collect all of this data to see where trends are occurring.  Residents who live in neighborhoods using the private social network called NextDoor can also respond with their concerns about and goals for Topeka’s transportation future on City posts about the Futures 2040 effort. 

The MTPO is the federally designated transportation planning body for the Topeka region comprised of five partners – City of Topeka, Shawnee County, Topeka Metropolitan Transit Authority, Kansas Department of Transportation, and Federal Highways Administration. A local long-range plan is required to be updated every 5 years to be eligible for continued federal/state transportation funds. MTPO staff support is provided by the City of Topeka Planning Department.

For more information about the MTPO, Futures 2040, and public engagement activities, visit www.topekampo.org.

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