By: Sam Belfield, Senior Transportation Engineer
According to the Transportation Research Board (TRB) Military Transportation Committee, most U.S. metropolitan areas with military installations currently have a disconnect between those installations and transportation organizations, such as the local Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) and the state Department of Transportation (DOT). The Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization (HRTPO), however, has a long-standing relationship with the military community and has taken steps to increase related efforts in recent years. The HRTPO has advanced the cause of planning in Hampton Roads—and, by example, in the United States—through a coordinated approach to meeting the transportation needs of the military located in the Hampton Roads region.
In July 2012, Mr. Sam Belfield, Senior Transportation Engineer, from the HRTPO staff submitted a paper to the Transportation Research Board (TRB) entitled “Integrating the Military into the Metropolitan Planning Process: The Hampton Roads, Virginia Experience.” The TRB paper was peer reviewed and accepted for presentation at the annual meeting in Washington, D.C. in January 2013 and publication in TRB’s Transportation Research Record. The purpose of the paper was to inform other metropolitan areas about the integration of the military into the transportation planning process in Hampton Roads and to provide a summary of key findings from the region’s Military Transportation Needs Study. Other MPOs can apply the methodologies, results, successes, and lessons learned from Hampton Roads to their respective regions.
At the 2013 TRB annual meeting, Mr. Belfield briefed members and attendees at two committee meetings (Military Transportation Committee and Metropolitan Policy, Planning, and Processes Committee) and one poster session (Multidisciplinary Perspectives of Metropolitan Transportation Planning). Mr. Glen Harrison, TRB Military Transportation Committee Chair, said “the outreach of your TPO to the military community to collaborate on regional transportation planning is a model for other locations to follow.” Furthermore, Mr. Harrison noted that the presentation “sparked discussion on the establishment of a subcommittee to address research on this topic” and that it “will potentially lead to additional funded research and a session at the 2014 TRB meeting on this topic.”
To view the TRB paper, please visit the Military Transportation Needs page on the HRTPO website: