Visualize 2045 is the long-range transportation plan for metropolitan Washington, helping area decisionmakers and residents “visualize” the region’s future. The federal government requires that this plan is updated every four years. The National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board (TPB) approved the updated plan on June 15, 2022. The TPB is the federally designated metropolitan planning organization (MPO) for metropolitan Washington. Working with local, state, regional, and federal partners, the TPB coordinates future plans, provides data and analysis to decision makers, and coordinates regional programs to advance safety, land-use coordination, and more.
As growing and diverse region, the National Capital Region needs a transportation system that provides a wide range of ways to get around. Through TPB and its long-range transportation plan, transportation agencies in the region are working together to provide more convenient and affordable transportation options so that each person can choose what works best for them.
Walking and bicycling are growing in popularity across the region, as the quality of life, public health, financial savings, and environmental benefits of non-motorized travel become increasingly apparent and as the network is built out.
As TPB and its partners take strides to meet regional goals and address priorities, we must consider a range of factors when planning for the future. We call these topics, Future Factors. The TPB weighs these emerging and significant challenges in planning for the update to Visualize 2045, in addition to Federal Planning Factors.
One of the first pieces to inform the plan update is a representative regional survey of residents in metropolitan Washington, part of the plan’s Voices of the Region public opinion research and engagement. The purpose of the survey was to gather information on attitudes and behaviors related to transportation topics. The survey focused on topics that will be addressed in the plan update, including equity, future technology like driverless cars, and addressing climate change. It also asked respondents about how COVID-19 has affected their views on the region’s transportation system and how the system can serve them better. The data from this survey will help decisionmakers in the metropolitan Washington region understand public opinion on the TPB’s policy priorities and how transportation programs, policies and projects can better serve constituents.
Two-thirds of respondents report their daily travel habits have changed a lot since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic
The Voices of the Region survey included a broad open-ended question which asked respondents to consider: What transportation investments should we make today that future generations will thank us for tomorrow?
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The TPB endorsed seven transportation initiatives that have the potential to significantly improve the region’s transportation system performance. Though not a required component of the federally mandated plan, these initiatives have become a key piece of Visualize 2045. The realization of these initiatives through local projects, programs, and policies can not only improve mobility, accessibility, and air quality in the region but also can contribute to the region’s greenhouse gas reduction and climate resiliency goals. TPB encourages its members to advance these ideas across the region, within local context.