Tri-County Transportation & Land Use Study

Study Overview

The Tri-County Transportation & Land Use Study was a first of its kind effort in our region to bring local governments, citizens, and businesses together across jurisdictional boundaries to talk about significant growth issues. The effort, completed in 2012, created a forum for local leaders in the counties of Robertson, Sumner, and Wilson to consider the growth plans of their neighboring communities in an effort to improve their own - all for the sake of regional mobility and prosperity. The MPO used the effort to generate ideas for the regional transportation plan. Local governments have been using the effort to develop or improve upon their own comprehensive plans.

Major Findings

The report lists the following goals for the tri-county area. These guided the work of the project team and informed the recommendations:

GOAL 1: Promote conservation of historic and cultural resources and support efforts in the study area related to these areas through plans, programs and policies.  
GOAL 2: Recognize and support the important role of agriculture in both the existing and future economy.  
GOAL 3: Preserve areas intended to retain a rural character or way of life and reinforce preservation through plans, programs, and policies.  
GOAL 4: Enhance economic growth and opportunities in the study area to ensure that a high quality of life remains for population in the study area.  
GOAL 5: Strengthen and enhance existing urban centers through plans, programs and policies.  
GOAL 6: Identify and protect the most critical natural resources that exist.  
GOAL 7: Provide for the efficient movement of persons, goods and services while providing a wide range of transportation choices for the study area.  
GOAL 8: Ensure that future growth in the study area occurs in a coordinated manner with community infrastructure and services needed to adequately support growth and development.  
GOAL 9: Provide a wide range of housing types and communities for a variety of household sizes and income ranges.
GOAL 10: Allow new types of development while recognizing the importance of retaining the established character and existing development types unique to the study area.


The following are recommended policies to better link transportation planning and land use planning as appropriate for the Tri‐County area: 

1. General Transportation Recommendations
- Improve existing alignments, some facilities, and the use of access management techniques - develop corridor management agreements, emphasize mobility, protect town centers and activity nodes, and promote vitality in growth areas. 
- Preserve other rural segments by employing access management techniques.
- Protect corridors from development impacts that would hinder mobility in key corridors. 
- Recognize and prioritize improvements to key linkages out of the Tri-county area. 
- Establish a strategy for regional freight movements around or through Portland. 
- Support transit routes, especially those which utilize existing rail. 

2. Regional Transportation Planning Recommendations
- Refine MPO Project Scoring System
- Establish "fix it first" policy
- Implement context-sensitive solutions
- Develop thoroughfare design guidelines
- Initiate complete streets
- Maintain and build regional bike/ped framework
- Prepare Tri-county collector street plan
- Update the official functional classification of Tri-county streets
- Support the regional transit vision
- Evaluate transit alterantives to connect TOD centers
- Create a template for local transportation plans

3. Local Transportation Planning Recommendations
- Make corridor planning standard operating procedure
- Manage parking supply
- Employ access management techniques

4. General Land Use Recommendations
- Allow redevelopment and infill development to occur in areas delineated as Traditional Town Centers and Village Centers
- Reinforce established centers by concentrating growth around them. 
- Create Transit Oriented Development Centers and allow TOD intensities along primary corridors where transit stops are likely to occur.
- Maintain development in Suburban Character Areas that is compatible with existing communities. 
- Maintain areas designated Activity Centers and Employment/Industrial Centers. 
- Delineate Conservation Areas shown in the Preferred Growth Strategy
- Delineate floodplains as Secondary Conservation areas. 
- Designate lands outside of Preferred Growth Areas and Conservation and Secondary Conservation areas as Rural areas, and minimize establishment and extension of urban public services and infrastructure in these lands. 

5. Regional Land Use Planning Recommendations
- Encourage population and employment growth in Preferred Growth Areas identified in this study.
- Direct growth away from Rural, Primary Conservation, and Secondary Conservation Areas identified in this study.
- Promote development patterns that enable people to live, work, learn, and play in the same community.
- Allow a mixture of land uses throughout the community, especially in Traditional Town Centers, Village Centers, Activity Centers, TOD Centers, and along the spines of Growth Corridors identified in this study.  

6. Local Land Use Planning Recommendations
- Utilize the preferred growth strategy as a resource for countywide and municipal plans
- Establish redevelopment districts in "centers" and declining "general urban" neighborhoods. 
- Maintain rural character
- Streamline development review
- Establish concurrency requirements
- Scale development assessment fees by location
- Employ asset management for water and sewer systems
- Guide development of corridors to reflect community and regional goals





  • Tri-County Transportation & Land Use Study

Completion Date

  • 2008


  • LandDesign (Lead Consultant)
    Kimley-Horne & Associates
    Sterling Communications
    Basile Baumann Prost Cole & Associates

Study Partners

  • Nashville Area MPO
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