The public is invited to provide its input on a long-term transportation plan developed by the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC).
Maria Schaper, MORPC transportation planning manager, spoke at the Sunbury Village Council meeting Dec. 18. MORPC is making the rounds among communities in its metropolitan planning area, which includes Delaware and Franklin counties in their entirety.
Schaper asked council, as well as the public, to examine the plan when it becomes available, “to review projects in your area.” Those transportation projects could be added to the plan, which is updated every four years. It is submitted to the Ohio Department of Transportation and United States Department of Transportation, which provides federal funding for projects they approve.
There were six main regional goals for the plan, Schaper said. They were reduce per capita energy consumption; protect natural resources; attract and retain economic opportunity; create sustainable neighborhoods; maximize the return on public expenditures; and benefit the health, safety and welfare of people.
Schaper said that although population will continue to grow, the public’s preferences are changing.
“We want options,” she said. “Smaller homes, walkability, amenities, more mobility and green space are among them.”
There are five types of potential projects in the plan, with some specifically targeted for Delaware County. The projects are: freeway, non-freeway (such as the Point), bike and pedestrian (a Scioto Trail that follows the river from Home Road to the Delaware/Marion County line), operations (US 36/SR37) and transit (bus or rail from Delaware to Columbus using US 23).
A draft of the 2020-2050 Metropolitan Transportation Plan will be available in February. Then there will be a public open house Feb. 26 at MORPC, 111 Liberty St., Columbus. The public comment period ends April 3, 2020. The plan is scheduled to be adopted in May.
For more information, visit www.morpc.org/mtp.
Gary Budzak may be reached at 740-413-0906 or on Twitter @GaryBudzak.