2045 Regional Transportation Plan

2045 Regional Transportation Plan

As the regional transportation planning agency (RTPA) for Santa Cruz County, the Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) is responsible for developing, implementing and regularly updating the Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) for Santa Cruz County. The RTP is a state-mandated plan that identifies transportation needs in Santa Cruz County over the next twenty-plus years. It estimates the amount of funding that will be available over this time frame and identifies a financially constrained priority list of projects. Triple bottom line sustainability principles will be incorporated into the prioritization of projects for the RTP. The triple bottom line approach evaluates the benefits of various transportation investments in developing a sustainable transportation system that advances the goals of economy, environment and social equity. Individual projects listed in the RTP must still undergo separate design and environmental processes, and can only be implemented as local, state and federal funds become available.

Final 2045 Regional Transportation Plan

The draft 2045 Regional Transportation Plan  was released for public review and comment at the December 2nd (2021) RTC meeting. A public hearing was held at the January 13, 2022 RTC meeting. The public comment period ended January 31, 2022. On March 3rd, 2022 , the RTC approved the final draft of the 2045 RTP. The final draft incorporated revisions based on feedback and comments received during the public input period. On June 16, 2022, the Regional Transportation Commission adopted the Final 2045 RTP and Final EIR. 

Constrained Projects and Financial Estimates

The complete cost of transportation needs in Santa Cruz County is currently estimated to be approximately $10 billion over the 25-year timeframe of the 2045 RTP. Approximately $5 billion in revenues from local, state and federal sources, including Measure D funds, are reasonably anticipated to be available for transportation in Santa Cruz County for the 25-year timeframe. Given the gap between the cost to operate, maintain, and improve the transportation system in Santa Cruz County 2020 through 2045 and projected revenues, the project list for the RTP must be divided into a “constrained” list (projects or portions of projects that could be implemented within the constraint of foreseeable revenues through 2045) and “unconstrained” list (projects that could be funded if new revenues, above and beyond projections, are generated). The constrained project list reflects the priority projects that will most help the region advance the RTP goals and performance measures and can be reasonably funded with revenues listed in the Financial Element. The RTC sought input from advisory committees, project sponsors and members of the public on the projects to be considered for the 2045 RTP and 2045 MTP-SCS financially constrained project list.

The RTC approved a draft Financially Constrained Project List at the March 4, 2021 Commission meeting, which has been updated for the final draft RTP based on input received.

New Project Ideas

New project ideas for the 2045 Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Plan were solicited through March 2020. Project ideas submitted were shared with the agency responsible for transportation projects the area of  interest and considered for inclusion in the 2045 Regional Transportation Plan.

Goals, Targets & Policies

The RTC sought public input to help define the Goals, Targets & Policies for the 2045 Regional Transportation Plan. Members of the public provided input to help inform the plan by taking a short survey and by reviewing the draft Goals, Targets & Policies and providing input on the document. The deadline to provide public input was January 3, 2020 at 5 p.m. Survey responses and stakeholder comments on the draft document were considered when updating the draft Goals, Targets & Policies and defining priority projects and are provided below. The RTC adopted the draft Goals, Targets & Policies at the February 6 Commission meeting.

Stakeholder Comments Received

Key MilestonesRTP 2045 Schedule and Key Milestones

Public Participation Plan

The SCCRTC is required by federal and state regulations to prepare and maintain a public participation plan every four years for the county to establish the process by which the public can participate in transportation planning, programming and project implementation including the development of the 2045 Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Plan.

The Final 2019 Public Participation Plan incorporates strategies to ensure that, to the greatest extent possible, interagency consultation and public participation are an integral part of the regional transportation planning and decision-making process. The plan emphasizes the transportation decision-making process, including the expanded use of visualization techniques and innovative online strategies in public outreach.

The public participation policies and procedures described in this plan are structured to comply with all applicable federal and state legislation, rules, and express the genuine regional value and interest for all residents of the Monterey Bay region to participate in the shaping and implementation of regional policies and decisions regarding the region’s multimodal transportation system.

The Draft 2019 Public Participation Plan was released for public comment on June 12, 2019. A public hearing was held at the August 1, 2019 SCCRTC meeting. The public comment period ended on August 28, 2019. Comments were received on the Draft Plan have been incorporated into the Final Plan and are included in Appendix H.

2045 RTP and MTP/SCS EIR

The 2045 MTP/SCS is a long-range plan that contains an integrated set of public policies and investments to maintain, manage and improve land use strategies and the transportation system in the Monterey Bay Area region through the year 2045. The Final 2045 MTP/SCS, Final EIR, and Final EIR Appendices can be downloaded from: https://ambag.org/plans/2045-metropolitan-transportation-plan-sustainable-communities-strategy.

A Notice of Preparation (NOP) for the Environmental Impact Report (EIR), the first step in development of the EIR, was available for comment January 15- February 14, 2020. The Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments (AMBAG), the lead agency for the EIR, solicited input on the scope and content of the environmental analysis of the Draft EIR via website and email notices and at public scoping meetings. The draft 2045 MTP/SCS EIR was released for public review and comment on November 22, 2021. The public comment period closed on January 31, 2022. Four public workshops/hearings were held in January 2022 to solicit public input. 

On April 15th, AMBAG decided to recirculate a part of Section 6, Other Statutory Considerations, of the Draft EIR, specifically Section 6.4.2(h) (Greenhouse Gas Emissions), Impact GHG‐C‐1. This decision was made based on the fact that, after completion of the Draft EIR, AMBAG identified a clerical error indicating that the 2045 MTP/SCS would not have a cumulatively considerable contribution to a significant cumulative greenhouse gas (GHG) impact related to exceeding state GHG reduction targets, when in actuality it would. Because the 2045 MTP/SCS would result in GHG emissions that have direct significant and unavoidable impacts related to exceeding state GHG reduction targets, the 2045 MTP/SCS also contributes considerably to this significant cumulative impact of GHG emissions. 

On Wednesday, June 15, 2022, the AMBAG Board of Directors certified the Final Environmental Impact Report (EIR) prepared for the 2045 Metropolitan Transportation/Sustainable Communities Strategy  MTP/SCS); adopted the CEQA Findings of Fact, Statement of Overriding Considerations, and Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program; made the finding that the SCS achieves the greenhouse gas reduction targets established by the California Air Resources Board; adopted the Final 2022 Regional Growth Forecast; and adopted the Final 2045 MTP/SCS. 


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RTC Contact

Amy Naranjo
Transportation Planner
(831) 460-3200