Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is Moving Forward Monterey Bay?
Faced with an aging transportation system and limited resources to maintain, improve and expand it, one our greatest challenges will be finding ways to ensure that our ability to move around the Monterey Bay region keeps pace with our population and workforce needs.
The Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments (AMBAG) has initiated an effort to study what the Monterey Bay region might look like by the year 2035, and how we should prioritize future transportation improvements.
Moving Forward Monterey Bay is an initiative led by AMBAG to create an integrated long-range transportation and land-use plan that will support a growing economy, provide more housing and transportation choices, and reduce transportation-related pollution in the Monterey Bay region of Santa Cruz, Monterey, and San Benito counties. Referred to as the AMBAG 2014 Metropolitan Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy (MTP/SCS) (the Plan), Moving Forward Monterey Bay is a work in progress that will be updated every four years to reflect new priorities.
How will Moving Forward Monterey Bay help me?
Integrating land use and transportation decisions creates many benefits such as:
Encouraging the use of transit and reducing automobile emissions by clustering more homes, jobs and other activities around transit stations.
Creating communities with jobs, stores, schools, homes, and recreational amenities close together, reducing traffic and resulting pollution.
Improving public health by making it easier to make trips by foot, bicycle and public transit.
Making wiser use of infrastructure and reducing future costs to taxpayers for such things as water, sewer, and roads.
How much growth is expected to occur in the Monterey Bay region?
By the year 2035, our population is forecasted to exceed 885,000 people. That's an increase of more than 150,000 people; along with 40,000 new households and nearly 65,000 new jobs.
How is this effort different from previous planning efforts?
Moving Forward Monterey Bay covers the time period through 2035, and, in addition to integrating transportation and land use development plans, it inaugurates a new process: the development of a Sustainable Communities Strategy (SCS). Transportation and land use must work together to promote sustainability if we are going to leave a better Monterey Bay region for our future generations.
Why is there an AMBAG 2014 MTP/SCS (the Plan)?
By law (Senate Bill 375), all regions in California must complete these plans. The law requires California's 18 metropolitan areas to plan jointly for transportation, land-use and housing as part of a "Sustainable Communities Strategy," to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (air pollution) for cars and light-duty trucks.
Who is responsible for doing this planning?
Within the Monterey Bay region, the law gives responsibility to prepare the Plan to the Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments (AMBAG). AMBAG is working with transportation and transit agencies as well as county and city agencies. AMBAG also partners with a wide range of stakeholders to ensure broad public input into the Plans preparation.
So why are regional agencies involved in local planning?
The law requires AMBAG to update the long-range regional transportation plan for the three-county Monterey Bay Area every four years. AMBAG is required to update the Regional Housing Need Allocation (RHNA) every eight years, and to allocate specific housing targets to individual cities and counties. State law (Senate Bill 375) also requires AMBAG to develop an integrated transportation and housing plan for the Monterey Bay Area.
What will Moving Forward Monterey Bay do?
State law requires Moving Forward Monterey Bay to:
Identify possible "areas within the region sufficient to house all the population of the region" - where people will live, including all income groups, for at least the next 25 years;
Develop a regional transportation plan that meets the needs of the region;
Reduce greenhouse-gas emissions (air pollution) from cars and light trucks.
In addition, Moving Forward Monterey Bay also needs to address a host of other quality-of-life concerns.
How does Moving Forward Monterey Bay affect me, personally?
As a long-range initiative, Moving Forward Monterey Bay will have more of an impact on future generations than it will on those of us here today. This Plan looks ahead to 2035 and seeks to preserve what we love about our towns, cities and farmlands, maintain key transportation infrastructure, and offer more choices in where we will live and how we will get around.
Moving Forward Monterey Bay sounds like a big project. Are we starting from scratch?
No, we are not. The Monterey Bay Area has been encouraging more focused and compact growth to revitalize older communities for decades. We've developed complete communities, reduced travel time and expense, improved the existing transportation system, reduced the costs of new infrastructure, protected the land and environment, promoted affordable housing and improved the lives for all Monterey Bay Area residents. Reducing vehicle-generated air pollution is another reason to continue these efforts.
When will Moving Forward Monterey Bay be complete?
The AMBAG Board is scheduled to adopt the Plan in the summer of 2014. Moving Forward Monterey Bay is a living document that will be updated every four years to reflect new priorities.