The Northwest Commission has launched an online survey to gauge public input and opinion as it advances its work on an update of its regional long-range transportation plan (LRTP). Upon its completion later this year, the plan will serve as a 20-year blueprint as to how state and federal investments should be made across a 5-county region that includes Clarion, Crawford, Forest, Venango, and Warren Counties. The Commission last updated the plan in June 2015.
Each year approximately $56.6 million in state and federal funds is invested into the region's transportation system. The LRTP will include an "investment plan" that includes potential projects to be considered by the Northwest Commission and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation as additional funding becomes available.
The online survey is available at http://NW-LRTP.metroquest.com. The survey is interactive and participants are able to offer feedback on regional transportation priorities and suggested project needs through use of an interactive map.
"The survey provides an excellent opportunity for the public to provide input into the process in a user-friendly and convenient way," said Travis Siegel, Regional Planning Manager at the Northwest Commission. The Commission is also planning to make the draft plan available at upcoming events throughout the region to gather public insights. A full list of events will be available in early March.
"The Commission is seeking to engage all users of our transportation system: students, workers, seniors, business owners, and tourists," Siegel said. "By working together to define what our specific planning needs are, we can begin drafting the policies and identifying the projects we need to improve the region's mobility and economic development potential."
The Northwest Commission is leading the update of the transportation plan, in cooperation with PennDOT and technical consulting assistance from Michael Baker International, Inc. It is being guided by a project advisory committee consisting of representatives from the region's five counties, the Oil Region Alliance, and the Crawford Area Transit Authority (CATA).
"This process is a regional conversation and an important opportunity for those who live and work within the region to discuss how we want to address transportation and traffic issues over the long-term," Siegel said. "We all have a stake in those decisions, for our own future and economic competitiveness."
About The Northwest Commission
The Northwest Commission is a Local Development District charged with administering services and programs to drive growth, create jobs and improve the region's quality of life. It is also a formal partner with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and provides staff administration for the Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC), which controls how state and federal dollars are spent on transportation projects throughout the region. Offices are located at 395 Seneca Street, Oil City, PA. For more information, visit www.northwestpa.org.