The HRTPO is fully committed to involving and collaborating with Hampton Roads citizens in a public involvement process that is grounded in community partnership, mutual problem solving and understanding. In other words, a process whereby citizens feel a sense of ownership and satisfaction in knowing their voices have been legitimately heard and their thoughts, ideas, and opinions have the potential to impact future HRTPO decisions.
In Hampton Roads, the cost of needed improvements to the transportation system far exceeds the funding available to address those needs and difficult decisions must be made regarding the use of scarce transportation dollars. For each project that is chosen for construction, many others will not be able to be built. The long term effect such decisions can have on so many lives makes it critical that the public be provided with ongoing, dynamic opportunities to participate in the planning and programming processes associated with the complex system of roads, mass transit, rail, waterways, pedestrian and bicycle facilities, and related infrastructure that make up the transportation system.
The HRTPO understands the public to mean all of those who have the potential to affect or be affected by the Hampton Roads transportation system. From bicyclists to motorists, public transportation users to freight haulers, social to environmental activists – Hampton Roads residents have a stake in the future of our transportation system.
Equally important, the HRTPO recognizes that not all communities and community members have enjoyed the same level of access or representation in transportation and other decisions made by public agencies. Therefore, as part of its public involvement strategy, the HRTPO takes special steps and measures to understand and consider the wants, needs, and aspirations of minority, low-income, and other under-served groups in Hampton Roads.
Understanding how important public involvement is, the HRTPO takes every available step to engage the public in conversations promoting mutual understanding and problem solving. It is a process defined by two-way communication and interaction. We want to help create an efficient, equitable Hampton Roads transportation system together and are committed to gaining public input and feedback.
The HRTPO is committed to meeting Federal regulations requiring that we, as the designated Metropolitan Planning Organization for the Hampton Roads Metropolitan Planning Area, provide all individuals of the region with an opportunity to comment throughout development and maintenance of the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). The HRTPO firmly believes that public involvement is vital to the transportation planning and programming processes in order to bring ideas to reality. Furthermore, the HRTPO realizes that effective planning cannot be achieved without the consent, cooperation, and consideration of interested parties and stakeholders throughout our region.