Thoroughfare Planning:Purpose of Tool:
Thoroughfare planning provides a long term vision of the major street network necessary to meet future travel needs. A thoroughfare plan classifies major streets by access to adjacent land use, mobility for through traffic, and context; it may include proposed roadways. The Institute of Transportation Engineers suggests that thoroughfare planning should also provide design standards by thoroughfare type. The thoroughfare plan guides future investments and provides the public with information about the long term plan for the road network. Implementation of a thoroughfare plan is accomplished through highway construction projects, funded either by the public sector or the private sector through the land development process.
Benefits of Using Tool:
According to the Mecklenburg-Union Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) and the Greenville Urban Area MPO , a thoroughfare plan:
In summary, thoroughfare planning balances travel and land use impacts of the street network to meet community objectives.
Steps Involved to Use Tool:
Thoroughfare planning involves first understanding the long term travel needs of the study area. A thoroughfare plan should be compatible with future land use plans, including the context of each corridor. Because a thoroughfare plan involves community planning, transportation planning, and engineering, a multidisciplinary team should guide the planning process. The public should be involved in reviewing proposed thoroughfares and their classifications, as well as associated design standards. In general, the steps in thoroughfare planning include:
Special Requirements to Use Tool:
Thoroughfare planning requires coordination with other plans for the future of the study area, including comprehensive plans and long range transportation plans. A community vision and goals must be known, or developed, for the thoroughfare plan. Technical analysis of road network performance and a public review of the proposed plan and design standards are both necessary components of thoroughfare planning. Adoption of the plan by regional and local jurisdictions is essential to implementing the plan. The plan should be included in the development code and review process by regulating jurisdictions; the plan must also serve as a basis for the Transportation Improvement Program or Capital Improvement Program.
Specials Resources Needed to Use Tool:
Representatives of planning, engineering, design professions, and stakeholders must be part of the thoroughfare planning process. There are several examples and ITE recommendations available to assist in thoroughfare planning. Once the plan and accompanying design standards are adopted, implementation will require staff resources to review both roadway designs and development proposals for consistency with the plan.
Communities / Agencies that Have Used Tool:
Houston, TX 77002
Mecklenburg-Union Metropolitan Planning Organization
600 E. Fourth Street
Charlotte, NC 28202-2853
City of Greenville Public Works Department
Wesley B. Anderson, Director
200 West Fifth Street
Greenville, NC 27858
City of Fort Worth Transportation and Public Works
1000 Throckmorton St.
Fort Worth, TX 76102
Metrics to Use to Monitor Tool Effectiveness:
Measures of effectiveness include both system-wide performance measures as well as site specific improvements based on design standards. For example, crash rates, speeding violations, level of service, mileage of pedestrian facilities, and the cost of roadway improvements all indicate how a thoroughfare plan might impact the system performance. Improvements in sight distance, interSteps Involved to Use Toolapacity, vehicular delay, pedestrian crossing distance, average speeds, or reduction in heavy-vehicle or cut-through traffic, may indicate the effectiveness of design standards for specific thoroughfare types, depending on community goals.
List of Resources to Obtain Additional Info:
ITE recommends that thoroughfare planning include thoroughfare types and functional classification for each major street in the road network. Source: Institute of Transportation Engineers, Context Sensitive Solutions in Designing Major Urban Thoroughfares for Walkable Communities
Citations1 Retrieved from http://www.mumpo.org/PDFs/What_is_a_TFare.pdf February 27, 2009
2 Retrieved from http://www.greenvillenc.gov/uploadedFiles/Departments/Public_Works_Dept/Information/adopted%20thor%20plan%20report%20text.pdf February 27, 2009