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Transportation Focus Area

"Charlotte will be the premier city in the country for integrated land use and transportation choices."

Current meeting schedule and documents

Safe, convenient, efficient, and sustainable transportation choices are critical to a viable community.  The City of Charlotte takes a proactive approach to land use and transportation planning within the framework of managing growth. Success is measured through five key strategic initiatives which include action steps necessary to achieve the City's overall goal of becoming the premier city in the country for integrating land use and transportation.

City Council Involvement:
Work on this Focus Area is directed by the Transportation and Planning Committee. The committee meets regularly to discuss transportation and planning issues before presenting them to the full City Council for debate and decision. View the meeting schedule, agendas and meeting summaries.
Committee Members include:

Chair:                   David Howard
Vice Chair:            Michael Barnes
Members:             John Autry
                            Warren Cooksey
                             Patsy Kinsey
Staff Resource:     Ruffin Hall, Assistant City Manager

The three major documents that provide the context for the Transportation and Planning Committee's work are the Centers, Corridors and Wedges Growth Framework, the Transportation Action Plan and the 2030 Corridor System Plan.  Each of these is discussed below: 

Centers, Corridors and Wedges Growth Framework:
The Centers, Corridors and Wedges Growth Framework establishes a vision for future growth and development for Charlotte by: 1) identifying three geographic types used to categorize land in Charlotte's "sphere of influence" - Activity Centers, Growth Corridors and Wedges; and 2) outlining the desired characteristics of each of these geographies.

Much of Charlotte's future moderate to higher intensity development is targeted within Growth Corridors and in Activity Centers. Lower to medium density residential and services supporting neighborhoods is targeted for the areas between the Growth Corridors, referred to as Wedges. This will help maximize existing infrastructure and services, particularly those related to transportation. 

While the Centers, Corridors and Wedges Growth Framework provides an overall vision for future growth and development, more specific direction, especially for integrating land use and transportation at the neighborhood level, continues to be provided in area plans and other policy documents.

Transportation Action Plan:
The City's Transportation Action Plan (TAP) details the City's transportation strategies and programs that are necessary to accommodate the City's future growth.
The TAP addresses Charlotte's Transportation mission statement and vision, transportation goals, objectives and policies, existing and future conditions impacting transportation and financial resources and constraints.
Since the TAP's adoption, the City has moved forward with key strategic initiatives, such as:

  • Implementation and dissemination of the TAP annual status report
  • Implementation of the 2006, 2008 and 2010 transportation bond projects
  • Creation of the Committee of 21's Transportation Task Force which studied City and regional transportation funding shortfalls and recommended solutions for advancing transportation projects
    Adoption of the Urban Street Design Guidelines to create complete streets
  • Ensuring land use and transportation decisions are consistent with the overall goal of maintaining the City's livability and long-term growth

2030 Corridor System Plan:
Another cornerstone of integrating transportation and land use is continued investment in and implementation of Rapid Transit. The opening of the LYNX Blue Line (South Corridor) in November 2007, marked the completion of the first light rail line in the Carolinas.  Building on its success, preliminary engineering is being advanced on the LYNX Blue Line Extension (BLE), the LYNX Red line (North Corridor Commuter Rail) and the cross-town Streetcar in partnership with the City of Charlotte. 

Although the LYNX BLE and the LYNX Red line remain the top two priorities in the Metropolitan Transit Commission's 2030 Corridor System Plan; the economic recession has significantly reduced the revenue anticipated for the implementation of the plan.  The result is that the 2030 Corridor System Plan adopted in 2006 is no longer financially achievable under the current schedule and new funding schedules and options must be explored by the Metropolitan Transit Commission and CATS staff.

Preparing for the Region's Future:
Charlotte and the surrounding region will continue to grow rapidly, making the implementation of new transportation strategies even more imperative. The City is committed to identifying and prioritizing transportation strategies that ensure the City's long-term viability and to seeking ways to secure adequate funding to implement the Transportation Action Plan.  These include:

  • Taking steps to improve the equity share formula used for state funding for planning, constructing, and maintaining multi-modal transportation facilities;
  • Finding ways to avoid air quality nonattainment, thereby preserving valuable federal funding for necessary transportation improvements; and
  • Considering the goals and recommendations of the Committee of 21.