Metropolitan Planning Organizations: Transportation Partnerships for the 21st Century

Systematic review of the history, legal basis, and present functions of metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) and regional transportation planning is needed to assess how well these organizations and processes serve contemporary needs in light of rapid changes in transportation technologies and rapidly growing metropolitan areas. The proposed project would directly inform efforts by MPOs, state departments of transportation (DOTs), and local and state policymakers to enhance metropolitan transportation planning and the capacities of MPOs responsible for it. This research will address ways in which the regional and state transportation institutions can respond more nimbly and effectively to rapidly changing transportation demands, conditions, and technologies in the 21st century. It will provide a menu of strategies and tools—drawn from cases and practice—for better equipping 21st century MPOs and MPO-state partnerships to plan, maintain, and improve transportation systems for U.S. metropolitan areas and the economies reliant on those systems. MPOs and DOTs collaborating in specific regions and state and federal policymakers could use these tools and strategies to enhance U.S. planning and decision-making institutions for the metropolitan challenges and changing transportation paradigms of the 21st century. The objective of this project is to produce a comprehensive resource for federal policymakers and MPOs, state DOTs, and state, regional, and local officials who seek to make metropolitan planning and MPOs more effective in the 21st century. The research findings—and the follow-on conference presentations, webinars, and workshops that would be crafted around their completion—will address MPOs and metropolitan planning from a variety of perspectives. They will help state, regional, and local actors understand the challenges and opportunities for MPOs and their partnerships with DOTs in light of dramatic shifts in ways transportation is consumed and delivered.


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Funding: $400000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 08-122

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590

    American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001
  • Project Managers:

    Schwager, Dianne

  • Start Date: 20180618
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01672245
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 08-122
  • Files: TRB, RiP
  • Created Date: Jun 18 2018 3:03PM