Renaissance has been helping Montgomery County, Maryland consider how it measures the transportation impact of proposed development. Coverage by the Washington Post includes a November 1 article outlining the proposed emphasis on transit and walking for the county and a November 5 editorial describing the smart growth plan up for debate in more detail.
Montgomery County is, for the first time, assessing the impacts of new development by looking at measures other than how many vehicles new development would add to the road, which has been the traditional measure. Moving forward, a development’s potential impact will be measured in person trips – whether by car, transit, foot, or bike. And the transportation impact tax was established by considering how the generation of person-miles of travel and mode share varies in different parts of the County; builders of a new single family home will pay about $22,000 per house in upcounty rural areas as compared to about $7,000 near Metrorail stations.
Perhaps equally important, the Council stated their intent to introduce more pro-rata share districts like White Flint, while recognizing it takes time and collaboration to establish them.
On November 15 the County Council approved the proposal to update their policies measuring the impact of growth and the adequacy of public transportation facilities.