Bikergo Gal to Serve on Transportation Advisory CommitteePosted: May 16, 2011
A month or so ago, Ventura City Council Member Carl Morehouse invited me to serve on an advisory committee to the Ventura County Transportation Commission’s Comprehensive Transportation Plan (CTP) Planning Process. He asked me because he knows I am a long time resident of our community and because I’m a cyclist. I also reminded him that as a teacher at Ventura College, I’m also familiar with the needs of students both on bicycles and on public transportation.
Of course I said yes! Tomorrow is the first meeting that I’ve been asked to attend. Keep reading to learn more about VCTC and the CTP and how you can share in the planning process.
What is the CTP?
- The Plan is envisioned as a long range policy document, built from local priorities and enhancing regional connections, that supports and enhances the quality of life for all Ventura County residents
- It will also fully examine various funding strategies and options
- Additionally, the Plan will form the basis for Ventura County’s input to the 2012 Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) and Sustainable Communities Strategy (SCS)
- These fulfill requirements for regions to identify land use and transportation strategies that will meet greenhouse gas reduction targets
Why are we developing the CTP?
- Through its previous outreach efforts, VCTC has continually heard that preserving quality of life and the unique character of each community and the region as a whole are essential.
- Despite the recent economic downturn, population growth to the year 2035 will exceed the capacity of today’s transportation infrastructure, hampering our mobility and quality of life with increased congestion.
- The growth in youth and senior age groups will increase demand for local transit, bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure.
- Existing urban areas will consume most growth, increasing densities at many town centers and popular destinations.
- More local trips and transit-dependent residents will increase demand for local transit, bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure, and maintenance of local roads.
- Ventura County needs a consensus-based CTP to preserve our quality of life and improve our transportation network at the local and regional levels.
- Everyone’s involvement and input are critical. All community members and interest groups have a vested interest in developing a balanced, consensus-based plan based on community priorities.
Is this for a ballot measure?
- No. The Plan will fully examine various funding strategies and options, which could include a potential local transportation sales tax through a ballot measure approved by the voters.
Who is leading this process? Who else is involved?
- Ventura County Transportation Commission (VCTC) is leading the region in development of this first CTP
- VCTC, in partnership with regional and local partners:
- Prioritizes and funds streets and roads maintenance and improvements;
- Funds many transit services, including Metrolink commuter rail, and operates VISTA bus service; and
- Funds freeway and highway maintenance and expansion
- VCTC is involving all communities in the region and the wide range of interests in this process including economic, environmental, social equity, bicycle, pedestrian, and more.
When are meetings held?
- Over the next year, many outreach meetings and presentations will occur.
- Local Advisory Groups will meet 3-4 times
- Regional Advisors will meet 1-2 times
- Informational presentations are made by VCTC to community groups and organizations on an as-requested basis. Many have already occurred.
How else can I be involved?
- Sign up to be in our database. We will periodically send updates and communications throughout the process.
- Very soon, a CTP-specific website will be launched, which will serve as the “communication hub” for the process.
- Register on our CTP website as soon as it’s launched. This will allow you to view all upcoming activities and the latest documents, including email notifications.
- VCTC’s website (goventura.org) contains general information about the organization.