By Mike Kozlosky
Executive Director, Wilmington Urban Area MPO
The Wilmington Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (WMPO) is the federally designated long range transportation planning organization for the Wilmington region. The Organization is tasked with providing a regional and cooperative transportation planning process that serves as the basis for the expenditure of all federal transportation funds in the region. Our planning area boundary includes the City of Wilmington, New Hanover County, Pender County, Town of Leland, Brunswick County, Town of Carolina Beach, Town of Wrightsville Beach, Town of Kure Beach, Town of Belville, and Town of Navassa. We also work collaboratively with the North Carolina Department of Transportation and the Cape Fear Public Transportation Authority.
In April, the WMPO embarked on Cape Fear Moving Forward 2045 which will be the next Metropolitan Transportation Plan for our region. This plan is required to be multi-modal, fiscally-constrained, have a minimum 20-year planning horizon, adhere to the MPO’s adopted public involvement policy, and use growth forecasts consistent with local land use plans. We are required by federal regulations to update this plan every 5 years. The plan will focus on the implementation of a strategic vision for all modes of transportation to include: aviation, bicycle and pedestrian, ferry and waterway, freight and rail, roadway, and public transportation.
I often hear from citizens that traffic congestion is a major concern or that there is a desire for more walking and biking trails in our community. Now is your chance to let us know what issues you think are the most important and to share your ideas regarding transportation in our region. Cape Fear Moving Forward 2045 includes a survey and interactive map that can be found at http://capefearmovingforward2045.org. Public comments will be accepted through the end of July. A second round of public input will be sought once the draft plan is complete in early 2020 with plan adoption by November 2020.
Over the course of the next few weeks, please take the time to share your ideas and input on transportation issues, needs and opportunities in our region. Thanks in advance and I look forward to hearing from you.