Building Atlanta’s transportation future
A transportation vision for Atlanta to optimize safety and travel times, equitable access, and environmental benefits.
The Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC), the metropolitan planning organization for the greater Atlanta region, recognized a need to imagine the collective future in light of new opportunities and real uncertainties posed by the rapid evolution of transportation technology. ARC set out to develop a regional vision for the Atlanta region and develop a 10-year strategic plan to help move the region forward.
As one of the fastest-growing regions in the country, the Atlanta area has long recognized the importance of developing a world-class infrastructure. But beyond that, Atlanta’s transportation leaders also understood the need to actively manage and operate transportation systems to improve mobility, safety, and travel time reliability. Since the early 1990s, the region has been at the forefront of implementing Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) and Transportation Systems Management and Operations (TSMO) initiatives with groundbreaking deployments, continued investment in traffic management, congestion-reduction demonstration projects, and regional traffic signal management.
At the same time, transportation technology is currently undergoing a rapid proliferation of services, modes, and business models considered impossible a decade ago. This transformation is changing the expectations and behavior of Atlanta’s travelers, freight, businesses, and public agencies. It is also opening up vast amounts of public and private sector data to enhance traveler information, expand travel choices, and optimize transportation system performance.
In collaboration with teaming partners and stakeholders, we developed a TSMO vision for the Atlanta region that focuses on five overarching goals: optimized safety, reliable travel times, efficient and seamless travel, equitable access, and environmental benefits. We engaged stakeholders throughout the region to develop a TSMO Strategic Plan to be advanced over a 10-year period by transportation agencies and partners.
The TSMO Strategic Plan and ITS Architecture Plan cover the 20-county Atlanta Transportation Management Area, with a population of 6.3 million (projected to grow to 8.6 million by 2050). The 10-year strategic plan contains eight strategic initiatives and 30 priority actions. Multi-organizational initiatives include strengthening TSMO planning and institutions, enhancing data sharing and management, encouraging TSMO innovation, deploying connected and automated vehicle technologies, advancing regional coordination and communications, and strengthening work zone and event management.
ARC has adopted the plan and is committed to supporting its implementation by forming a TSMO committee and tracking progress toward actions outlined in the plan.
The TSMO Strategic Plan provides a framework for cooperation among partners in the region to advance coordination and collaboration, share data, and deploy coordinated TSMO strategies. The products of this effort will help the Atlanta region provide safer, more reliable, and efficient mobility for all system users while supporting environmental sustainability and quality of life.