Pamplin Media Group – Your voice in regional transportation planning

Opinion: Here in the Portland metropolitan region, we have a Regional Transportation Plan, and it’s a big deal in the transportation world.


As the days get shorter and the holiday season approaches, it seems like there are more places to be and errands to run.

If you’re like me, you spend time trying to save time by planning out your trips. There’s always the calculations on how much time will it take to get to a meeting, pick up someone from the airport or grab groceries from the store. All of these destinations begin with the question of how am I getting there? On a good day, it takes 25 minutes to get to the airport from the west side. That’s a really good day. Same goes for online purchases I’m waiting to be delivered both for work or for home. I personally love the convenience of online shopping, but it also ties back into the region’s transportation system.

Here in the Portland metropolitan region, we have a Regional Transportation Plan, and it’s a big deal in the transportation world. Our regional government, Metro, is responsible for the 25-year plan referred to as the Regional Transportation Plan, or RTP. This plan is part of a larger visionary plan called the 2040 Growth Concept created in 1995. To adapt to a changing region, the RTP is updated every four years, although, according to Metro’s Kim Ellis, Metro is actually moving to a five-year cycle, since the region has been attaining our air quality goals.

The last RTP update was completed in 2014 and since then, 132 transportation projects have been built, or are funded and will be complete by 2019. This equates to more than a $3 billion in transportation investment in our region.

So why does this matter to you and to me? As you have experienced and seen, transportation is a key component of how we live. It shapes our communities and how we live every day. It shapes our personal planning — how we get to work, how we get to school, when we meet friends, or if a package arrives at our doorstep on…

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