Improving the Movements of People and Freight: A Case Study of the Piedmont Atlantic Megaregion

As specifically addressed in the 2016 Southeast Rail Forum by Mr. Anthony Foxx, Former U.S. Secretary of Transportation, a wave of population growth is going to hit the Southeast. Another 13 million people and a significant increase in the movement of freight can be expected by 2045. As such, local and state leaders shall act promptly to develop a comprehensive blueprint for the Region’s rail network and establish a Southeast Rail Commission to advance it or risk being stuck in traffic for a very long time. Although the progress over the years has been steady, future work remains. Meanwhile, from Boston to Washington DC to Charlotte to Atlanta, the term, “megaregions”, has been used to re-envision the economic and social fabric of America. Megaregions have been defined as networks of metropolitan areas linked by economic and trade relationships, transportation infrastructure, linked ecosystems, and growth concerns. Megaregions, supported by improved transportation networks, have the potential to evolve as integrated economic units. The purpose of this project will consider the Piedmont Atlantic Megaregion with an emphasis on maintaining efficient future people and freight movements and will offer multimodal solutions to moving people and freight to, between, and within the metropolitan economies of the megaregion to 2050. The needs, impacts and benefits of intercity high speed passenger and freight rails will be carefully examined and objectively quantified. The issues and themes that arise in the megaregion evolution and development context, including regional planning, effective land management, water, energy and air quality issues, and education and social equity issues including health access, will be addressed. The importance of developing a multimodal transportation system that integrates freight, light rail, commuter rail, buses, and personal vehicles, will also be discussed and emphasized.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Contract to a Performing Organization has not yet been awarded.


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $91864
  • Contract Numbers:


  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Center for Advanced Multimodal Mobility Solutions and Education

    University of North Carolina, Charlotte
    Charlotte, NC  United States  28223

    Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

    University Transportation Centers Program
    Department of Transportation
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Managing Organizations:

    University of North Carolina, Charlotte

    Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
    9201 University City Boulevard
    Charlotte, NC  United States  28223-0001
  • Project Managers:

    Fan, Wei

  • Performing Organizations:

    Center for Advanced Multimodal Mobility Solutions and Education

    University of North Carolina, Charlotte
    Charlotte, NC  United States  28223
  • Principal Investigators:

    Fan, Wei

  • Start Date: 20170203
  • Expected Completion Date: 20180930
  • Actual Completion Date: 20180930

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01625942
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Center for Advanced Multimodal Mobility Solutions and Education
  • Contract Numbers: 69A3551747133
  • Files: UTC, RIP
  • Created Date: Feb 14 2017 3:33PM