On June 15, 2021–in advance of the June 16 meeting of the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board (TPB) at which the project submissions for updating Visualize 2045, the region’s long-range transportation plan, were scheduled for adoption –Active Prince William sent the following message to Prince William County’s two representatives on that regional transportation planning body–Prince William Board of County Supervisors Chairman Ann Wheeler and Neabsco District Supervisor Victor Angry. We also sent similar messages to the TPB members who represent the Cities of Manassas and Manassas Park–Manassas Vice Mayor Pamela Sebesky and Manassas Park Mayor Jeanette Rishell.
The National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board (TPB) will be taking up a resolution at their June 16th meeting regarding a Visualize 2045 Alternative Build Scenario that would aim to achieve TPB climate and equity goals through the use of transportation demand management, transit, and land use strategies consistent with regional policy goals, a modified regional project list that reduces the number and scale of road capacity expansion projects in accordance with anticipated reduced travel demand, and with particular focus on public transportation and pedestrian/bicycle improvements needed to serve mobility disadvantaged populations. This is being brought forward because the recently submitted project updates to Visualize 2045 will not meet the TPB climate and equity goals.
Due to the time and resource constraints at this point in the Visualize 2045 update process, Active Prince William recommends Prince William County support the following action plan to support meeting TPB climate and equity goals:
1) Commit to completing the TPB Climate Change Mitigation Study and review it thoroughly at the regional and jurisdictional levels through the first quarter of 2022.
2) Formally commit to assisting the TPB to develop a set of transportation policies and projects, by the end of 2022, which would be implementable at the jurisdictional and regional levels, consistent with the recommendations of the Climate Change Mitigation Study, that, when fully implemented will assure the region will meet its climate change mitigation goals
3) Commit to take actions to officially adopt the projects and policies developed to attain the region’s climate goals within the transportation sector, and advance these projects into the region’s LRTP for a mid-term update to be completed in 2024
As voting members of the TPB, this is an opportunity for Prince William County to be a transportation planning leader as it relates to climate and equity in the region. Supporting this initiative aligns with PWC BOCS Resolution 20-773: Regional Climate Mitigation and Resiliency Goals and the Prince William County Equity and Inclusion Policy.
The updated mobility chapter of the comprehensive plan should be aligned with this action plan. Prince William County should also advocate these measures be included as the starting point for the next NVTA Transaction Plan. To support this the Prince William County should advocate that the General Assembly act to modify the NVTA statute to align with your climate and equity goals.
The climate is not waiting. The time to act is now.