January 2019 / Issue 1
Metropolitan Transportation Plan in Development for CRCOG Region
CRCOG is in the process of developing a new Metropolitan Transportation Plan (MTP) for the region. This plan, formerly called the Long-Range Transportation Plan, looks at the long-term transportation needs of the region over a 25-year horizon. The MTP is a federally-mandated plan that determines the region’s priorities for allocating federal transportation funds. As the region’s Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), CRCOG develops this plan to form the core of its transportation planning program. This plan will:

  • Identify key transportation goals, policies, and priorities to meet the access and mobility needs of the CRCOG region;
  • Identify innovative funding mechanisms to help finance the region’s important transportation priorities;
  • Develop a fiscally-constrained implementation plan for the region’s priority transportation projects; and
  • Incorporate performance-based planning and programming requirements.

The plan has been under development for the past year and is nearing completion. Following months of stakeholder outreach, we are now seeking input from the public. A survey is available on our website ( https://crcogconnect2045.com/ ). We recently held two public outreach meetings in Hartford and New Britain. Additional meetings are being scheduled for Spring 2019 when the draft plan will be available.

The draft will also be shared with our partners in various local, state, and federal agencies. The final plan needs to be adopted by the CRCOG Policy Board by the end of April 2019. Additional opportunities to review the plan and provide input will be posted on the CRCOG website and on the project website: https://crcogconnect2045.com/
Accelerating Shared and Sustained Economic Growth in the Capital Region
Over the past year, CRCOG has been working with the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving and the MetroHartford Alliance to develop a new Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy for the metropolitan region. That strategy, the Metro Hartford Future, is now available in draft form and we are seeking comments, suggestions, and questions. You can find the draft here: http://crcog.org/2018/02/comprehensive-economic-development-strategy/

The Metro Hartford Future project aims to accelerate shared and sustained economic growth throughout the Metro Hartford Region. Key to that mission is that economic growth be inclusive, not leaving behind traditionally underserved populations. Also, it is key that the strategy get sustained implementation. To ensure that the Metro Hartford Future project becomes more than just a report on a shelf, CRCOG and its partners have worked diligently to develop strategies in partnership with potential implementing groups. The goal is to develop the necessary capacity to keep this process going over the next 10 to 20 years.

The initial focus of the implementation phase will include three overarching themes: workforce development, regional cooperation, and investment in place. A key strategy in the first theme is to develop a next-generation workforce development system. Inspired by German and Swiss training programs, CRCOG is working with Capital Workforce Partners and other stakeholders to develop a “dual-track” training system that would engage high school students (and eventually other segments of the labor force) in career training programs that emphasize industry-accepted credentials. Regional cooperation will be advanced primarily through a regional business retention and attraction program. The MetroHartford Alliance will take the lead on this strategy and work closely with municipal partners to develop a consistent message, brand, and process for recruiting and retaining companies.
Finally, CRCOG will take the lead on developing a proposal for a regional investment fund to support regionally significant projects. Many examples are available nationwide, but the final form of the fund will be determined in cooperation with partners.

The Metro Hartford Future project has been in the planning phase for about a year now, but the real work is just beginning. The strategies included in the draft document are just a starting point for what will be an evolving, collaborative implementation process. 
Other CRCOG News
Performance Measures & Performance-Base Planning
In the Capitol Region and around the country, regional transportation planning is beginning to be integrated with performance-based planning. Performance measures are meant to identify tangible progress towards specified and regularly set targets in transportation, and performance-based planning is meant to place performance measures at the center of future transportation planning efforts.

Performance measures were first required by the MAP-21 and FAST Act legislation passed by Congress in 2012 and 2015, respectively, and after a long period of consultation, rulemaking, and preparation, they are finally being implemented in 2017 and 2018. They are a joint effort by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to partially shape the planning process around attainable and verifiable (especially quantifiable) targets. State DOTs and MPOs utilize both existing and new data sources for calculating performance measures, which can then be used to select a performance target.

CRCOG has endorsed CTDOT targets in February and November 2018. Performance measures as a planning practice is not just about meeting targets, it is about incorporating data driven decision making support into the planning process. CRCOG has shown itself to be a leader in the state among other COGs when it comes to understanding and working with performance measures. CRCOG’s current efforts around performance-based planning are mainly focused on project selection and plan making that progress towards current targets.
Upcoming CRCOG Meetings
**The January 9, 2019 Executive Committee Meeting is CANCELED**
January 14, 2019
Transportation Committee
@ CRCOG Offices, 3rd Floor, 241 Main Street, Hartford, CT 06106 United States
January 15, 2019
Municipal Services Committee
@ CRCOG Offices, 3rd Floor, 241 Main Street, Hartford, CT 06106 United States
January 17, 2019
CREPC Committee
@ CRCOG Offices, 3rd Floor, 241 Main Street, Hartford, CT 06106 United States
Regional Planning Commission
@ West Hartford Town Hall, 50 South Main Street, West Hartford, CT 06107 United States
January 23, 2019
Finance and Personnel Sub-Committee
11am-12pm (prior to Policy Board Meeting)
@ CRCOG Offices, 3rd Floor, 241 Main Street, Hartford, CT 06106 United States
Policy Board
@ CRCOG Offices, 3rd Floor, 241 Main Street, Hartford, CT 06106 United States