Transportation Priorities Project
This project exemplified the need for, and value of, a neutral convener. TPP featured an innovative and integrated design of interviews, which informed a series of community meetings, which informed a series of community forums, which finally informed a regional summit. Electronic, audience response, keypad polling was used throughout this three month process.
The Transportation Priorities Project (TPP) has a simple message: Clark County is in a transportation crisis, and we need to step up to the plate and do something about it. The theme of the TPP is Dream It, Fund It, Build It. TPP is grassroots and citizen-driven—ordinary people working to find solutions to this crisis. The TPP gives citizens the opportunity to make informed choices about the direction of transportation improvements in Clark County over the next 20 years—what improvements should be made, how improvements will be funded, and how we will pay for it.
TPP volunteers are talking with friends, family, neighbors, and groups and organizations about Clark County’s transportation crisis. After holding more than 40 meetings and talking with over 500 people, so far they have heard that:
- You recognize the importance and value of transportation—good planning results in sound development and family wage jobs, less congestion, cleaner air—a better life for us and our children.
- You need straight talk—how it all works, who comes up with the plan, what the plan looks like, who pays for it, when will it happen.
In early summer 2002, some concerned citizens got together to talk about Clark County’s transportation system and its direction for the future, because local transportation agencies and experts can’t seem to come up with a workable solution that citizens will support. The TPP came up with a blueprint for a citizen-led community discussion. That blueprint became the Transportation Priorities Project: Dream It, Fund It, Build It. Two local not-for-profit organizations, Identity Clark County (ICC) and InterAct, took the project on.
From August–November 2002, 500 individuals at 40 meetings were asked what they knew about the county’s transportation issues, what their preferences were, and what solutions they would suggest. A final all-day meeting produced a group of 113 people willing to work on the transportation project.
The first phase of TPP found out that 1) people care deeply about what happens in their neighborhood and see fixing travel around the county and to and from Oregon as a priority, 2) people can learn a lot from good information about transportation, and 3) if people know their money will be spent on local projects, they are willing to pay for them. The people who participated in TPP I said they were moderately concerned about getting from place to place. They were more concerned about finding solutions and funding for major needs for our transportation system for the near and distant future.
Government officials expressed a sincere desire to know what citizens wanted, what they were willing to pay for, and how they want to pay for it. Many talked about how hard it is to get people involved and give them good information about transportation choices and funding. Government officials get mixed messages from citizens—they want transportation improvements but don’t want to pay for them.
Citizens and government officials agreed that we need better communication, understanding, and information so we can work together to find solutions to the region’s transportation problems. People also told us in TPP I that we should
- Continue with the same intense TPP grassroots participation.
- Convince our elected officials to put a statewide program in place that provides dollars for local and state transportation projects.
- Pull everyone together to talk the same talk about transportation so we have a better chance of receiving state and federal funding.
- Look at the big picture for Clark County’s transportation needs, instead of a piece here and a piece there.
- Reach out and spread the transportation word throughout Clark County—neighborhood to neighborhood, city to city.
- Help citizens and local officials understand each other and work together as a team.
On this website is the project report prepared by The Performance Center, which details how the project was conceived, designed and executed, and documents the results. The “Additional Information” provided as attachments to the report capture direct comments/concerns from the jurisdictions prior to launching the project, actual text of polling questions used, keypad technology polling results, a transportation briefing document (educational piece), direct citizen input comments, and jurisdiction reactions to the project.
Please take some time to review the documents.
- Transportation Priorities Project Findings Report
- 44 pages, 414K PDF.
- Jurisdiction Interview Comments
- Comments from interviews with all Clark County jurisdictions conducted prior to the community outreach effort; what jurisdictions needed to know from citizens.
7 pages, 102K PDF.
- Keypad Polling Text from Area Meetings and Forums
- Full text of questions asked of citizens at the Area (first level) Meetings.
5 pages, 122K PDF.
- Written Comments from Area Meeting Participants
- In addition to response to the keypad polling questions, citizens were asked to submit written comments at the area meetings. Comments are presented by “area” of Clark County.
27 pages, 220K PDF.
- Written Comments from Area Forum Participants
- In addition to response to the keypad polling questions, citizens were asked to submit written comments at the area forums. Comments are presented by “area” of Clark County.
11 pages, 123K PDF.
- TPP Summit Purpose, Agenda, Discussion Guidelines
- A brief description of the purpose of the Summit, the agenda and guidelines for table and panel discussions.
1 page, 87K PDF.
- TPP Briefing Document
- A primer in Clark County transportation planning.
4 pages, 85K PDF.
- TPP Summit Keypad Polling Text
- Full text of questions asked of citizens at the county-wide Summit.
4 pages, 128K PDF.
- Written Comments from TPP Summit Participants
- In addition to response to the keypad polling questions, citizens were asked to submit written comments.
21 pages, 168K PDF.
- Jurisdictions’ Comments on the Report
- The jurisdictions interviewed prior to launching the project were asked to comment on the project findings, recommendations and report.
2 pages, 147K PDF.
Keypad Polling was a central tool in this project.
In response to what we heard citizens say in TPP I, we moved on to TPP II and to working with all of the transportation agencies in the county to develop three regional transportation improvement scenarios—a big picture.
TPP II will gather feedback from the public and share it with transportation agencies on:
- Level of service of the regional transportation system—movement of people and freight through Clark County on highways and arterial roads
- How much the public is willing to pay
- How the public prefers to pay
TPP II closes the loop between the users and designers and funders of Clark County’s transportation network so that projects that receive a high level of support from citizens are put at the top of the list for implementation. The public will use TPP II to tell transportation agencies how much more they are willing to pay for transportation improvement.
Most of us don’t understand transportation lingo—charts, traffic modeling and analysis, and concurrency. We want to know what the problem is, how it will affect us, how it will be fixed, and what it’s going to cost. We want straightforward, understandable talk, and we want someone to listen to what we think should be done. So the TPP has come up with Transportation 101—Useful Information About Transportation. In one-on-one conversation, group presentations, printed materials, and an interactive web site, the TPP intends to get its message to as many people as possible. (Visit our web site at http://www.tppii.com for complete details about the TPP, and how you can make a difference.)
What you do with the message is up to you, but we encourage you to listen, learn about transportation, think about what you want for Clark County, and then take a few minutes to tell us. We’ll take your ideas, your recommendations, suggestions, and concerns, and tell the people who are responsible for developing, building, and maintaining our transportation system. Then we can all work together to address the transportation crisis. Citizens need to give their opinions about the following transportation questions:
- What do citizens want?
- What are they willing to pay for?
- How do they want to pay for it?