LUTRAQ: Making the Land Use, Transportation, Air Quality Connection
Please visit www.calthorpeanalytics.com for regional planning and modeling work, including the UrbanFootprint and RapidFire models.
LUTRAQ is a national demonstration project that uses principles of Transit Oriented Development (TOD) to reallocate a projected population growth of 160,000 in Washington County from standard sprawl to a mixed-use pattern that supports the planned light rail and bus network extensions. The resultant plan validates how effective land use planning can reduce auto-dependence, increase mobility, improve air quality and create more affordable communities.
The plan used extensive modeling studies and analysis to rearrange land uses predicted to develop in the next twenty years, without altering overall density and the proportion of different housing types. Potential Growth Areas and new Opportunity Sites were identified on the basis of environmental factors, existing development trends and proximity to transit. Four new types of development were planned: Mixed-Use Centers to urbanize existing downtown areas through redevelopment and infill; Urban TODs at station areas along planned light rail lines, Neighborhood TODs along bus feeder routes and Secondary Areas within a mile (1.6 km) of each center.
An important aspect of the study was the enhancement of the standard traffic prediction computer model to include factors of ‘Pedestrian Friendliness’ and ‘Heterogeneity’ to simulate the positive impacts of walkable and mixed-use communities. Modeling results for the project indicate a 4-fold increase in walking and 2.5 times more transit use that can be attributed to incorporating principles of TOD in planning.