- Average commute times have remained among the best in the nation.
- Individuals who don’t have ready access to a car, or who are not able to drive, have access to affordable transportation alternatives.
- Flexible work schedules among local industries and employers have diluted peak commuting numbers.
- The City of Huntsville has an advanced high-tech traffic management system that keeps the network running efficiently.
One important key to commerce is transportation. The ability of goods and services to move within and beyond a region, the ease and efficiency of commutes, and the connections among businesses and consumers all rely on a high-functioning transportation network. But that network is also important to a general quality of life. It is crucial that residents feel safe moving about their city, that they have options that best suit their needs, that they feel connected to – not isolated from – their community.
There are three distinct aspects to an efficient and effective transportation network:
- Varied Modes. Car, transit, bicycle, pedestrian – All should be viable options for residents. Bike/ped, automobile, and transit networks should complement each other, and all should provide links to where people want to go.
- Route Options. Users should have multiple paths connecting to destinations, to provide flexibility and resiliency in the network. Congestion can be mitigated by providing effective alternative routes for traffic flow.
- Mixed Land-Use. There is more than one way to ensure short commute times. One focuses on making sure that traffic moves. The other looks at shortening the physical length of the commute. By re-introducing mixed-use development, commute times can be kept short by reducing commute distances.
These aspects are addressed in several accompanying policy sections. Taken together they will help ensure that, as the region continues to grow and develop, the transportation network will better serve all those who live and work in the Huntsville metro area.
Discourage “superblocks” in new development, and look for opportunities to break up such blocks in existing districts.
Large residential developments should offer multiple points of egress, prioritizing points along more than one frontage.
Coordinate with the State DOT to implement intelligent and context-sensitive access management along major arterials such as University Drive and Memorial Parkway.
In commercial developments, encourage inter-parcel connectivity. This can be accomplished through shared drives, intermediate or “backage” roads, and/or sidewalks and bike routes, among other strategies.
Coordinate closely with MPO staff to ensure that local connections are aligned and scheduled with regional opportunities.