Selecting transportation projects
A major component of the long‐range plan is identifying regionally significant projects to improve the transportation of people and goods. This federally required project listing is intended to help the region identify and prioritize future transportation investments based on goals, strategies and expected financial resources. The list is also important in terms of future funding, as some federal programs require projects to be listed in the long‐range plan.
Stakeholder workshops to refine priorities
In spring 2014, MARC hosted two regional stakeholder workshops to develop a strategic framework to guide the update to Transportation Outlook 2040. A detailed summary of the workshops is available in Appendix G: Public Participation.
- The first workshop focused on defining investment strategies and regional priorities to maximize the use of limited funds. Planning partners conducted a weighting exercise that established the following list of relative transportation priorities (in descending order of importance): System Preservation, System Diversity, System Efficiency and System Expansion. As demonstrated by the relative priorities, participants agreed that preservation was most important, and that the effect expansion would have on maintaining the current system should be weighed heavily prior to adding capacity. Participants also identified the need to shift regional focus to alternative modes. Reoccurring themes included intelligent transportation systems (ITS), land use planning, transit investment, and bicycle projects with mobility benefits.
- The second workshop used priorities and themes from the previous workshop to prioritize a list of candidate projects. The workshop served the dual purpose of prioritizing projects for Transportation Outlook 2040, and for a proposed transportation sales tax in Missouri. Workshop participants were given a description of baseline financial constraints for the region, and then participated in breakout groups to develop a ranked list of projects for different transportation modes (Kansas Highway, Missouri Highway, transit, bicycle/pedestrian, and aviation/freight).
Planning committee approval
The MARC Transportation Planning Committees — Regional Transit Coordinating Council, Highway Committee, Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee — finalized the project lists for the update to Transportation Outlook 2040. Using the relative strategic priorities and ranked project lists developed at the stakeholder workshops, the committees reviewed and ultimately approved the updated, financially constrained and illustrative project lists for the plan, as presented in Appendix D.