About the HRMPO

The Harrisonburg-Rockingham Metropolitan Planning Organization (HRMPO) was established in 2003 and is the regional transportation planning organization that provides support for multimodal transportation projects in the City of Harrisonburg, the Towns of Bridgewater, Dayton, and Mt Crawford, and the surrounding portions of Rockingham County.

The HRMPO was created as a result of the designation of the Harrisonburg-Rockingham County Urbanized Area by the U.S. Census on May 1, 2002. Federal regulations require an urbanized area to create and maintain an ongoing transportation planning program that is comprised of representatives of the local jurisdictions as well as state and Federal transportation officials.

Special emphasis is placed on providing equal access to a variety of transportation choices and effective public involvement in the transportation planning process. We invite you to browse our website to see what is planned to improve your transportation system and, in the process, your quality of life. The MPO values your input, so please contact us with any questions or suggestions or to become more involved in the planning process.

What is a Metropolitan Planning Organization?

A metropolitan planning organization (MPO) is a transportation policy-making body consisting of representatives from local, state and federal governments, transit agencies, transportation providers and other stakeholders. Federal law requires all urbanized areas with populations greater than 50,000 to designate an MPO to conduct transportation planning activities. Federal funding for transportation projects and programs are channeled through this planning process.

What does the MPO do?

MPOs work to ensure that expenditures on transportation projects and programs are based on local priorities and mutually agreed upon goals. MPOs use a comprehensive, cooperative, and continuing (3C) process to accomplish this which includes:

  • Consideration of all possible transportation strategies;
  • An evaluation process that encompasses diverse viewpoints;
  • Collaborative participation from relevant transportation-related agencies
    and organizations;
  • Open, timely and meaningful public involvement;
  • Monitoring existing conditions;
  • Forecasting future conditions;
  • Identifying current and projected future problems and needs;
  • Developing long-range and short-range capital and operational plans and strategies for moving people and goods;
  • Estimating the impact of strategies/improvements to the transportation system and environment, including air quality;
  • Developing a financial plan for securing sufficient revenues to cover the cost of implementing strategies.

Establishment of the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Metropolitan Planning Organization

The first meeting of the MPO was held on March 18, 2003. The MPO was created through a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that was executed between the local jurisdictions in the urbanized area, including the City of Harrisonburg, Rockingham County and the Towns of Bridgewater, Dayton and Mt. Crawford and the Secretary of Transportation for the Commonwealth of Virginia. The MOU was adopted by the MPO at its first meeting, circulated to the local governments for adoption and was finally executed on May 15, 2003. In addition, the MPO designated the Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission (CSPDC) to serve as the staff and administrator of the MPO.

Once the MPO was established, a set of Bylaws were adopted on May 15, 2003, to create the structure and representation on the MPO. The adopted Bylaws of the MPO created two committees, the Policy Board and the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC).

Your voice matters and you have a role to play in informing and helping to shape HRMPO’s programs, plans, studies. Get involved with HRMPO and subscribe to our mailing list to be notified of opportunities for public comment on our Plans and Studies.


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