Michigan (2013)

Smart Growth America was invited by Michigan DOT (MDOT) Director Kirk Steudle and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority to develop mobility management and transportation demand management strategies for five regions in the state: Washtenaw, Lansing Tri-County, Marquette, Grand Rapids and greater Traverse City.

The program brought together a diverse array of transportation agency staff, community advocates and civic leaders in each region to discuss ways to improve transportation policies and programs.

“MDOT is all about listening and responding to our customers,” said MDOT Director Kirk Steudle. “We know that mobility and transportation access are key factors in where a person decides to live or locate a business. That’s why the department is more multi-modal in its focus than at any time in our 108-year history. We are happy to support Smart Growth America’s efforts to spark economic development and enhance the lives of everyone in our beautiful state.”

“Sustainable community corridors serve as learning laboratories for strategic placemaking by targeting resources that can have the most impact in helping create vibrant, livable communities,” says Scott Woosley, executive director of MSHDA. “Together with the Michigan Environmental Council and Michigan Department of Transportation, we are thrilled to have had the opportunity to assist in connecting Smart Growth America with our communities. The Authority will continue to look for innovative ways to partner and share resources with the private and public sectors.”

“For a small town and rural county this project has been a golden opportunity,” said Dave Stensaas, Marquette City Planner. “We now have a clear path forward to improve transit services for the City of Marquette, something that without help would have otherwise taken years to accomplish. The help came at a time when our demographics, public preferences and public funding are changing. I’m sure other communities across Michigan are facing similar challenges, and these resources could really help.”

“The partnership between area transit providers, NWMCOG, MDOT, MSHDA and Smart Growth America helped us identify ways to better meet the mobility needs of our residents and further support our region’s economy,” said Matt Skeels, a Regional Planner with the Northwest Michigan Council of Governments. “This program has helped us take the next step toward a coordinated regional transit network—a key goal of the Grand Vision, our region’s long-term plan.”

The results of the project are outlined in Smart Growth America’s final recommendations report. More detailed recommendations for each of the five regions included in the project are below.

Grand Rapids

Smart Growth America worked with the City of Grand Rapids to develop a transportation demand management strategy that builds on the City’s Michigan Street Corridor plan, a comprehensive, stakeholder-led initiative to holistically integrate housing, economic and community development, transportation and environmental design. Read the final report for Grand Rapids ››

Ann Arbor

Smart Growth America worked with the Washtenaw County Office of Planning and Economic Development to develop transportation demand management strategies for the region’s Washtenaw Avenue corridor. These strategies will help manage the growth of local traffic demands on the corridor and support the region’s work on ReImagine Washtenaw, a revitalization vision for the corridor. Read the final report for Ann Arbor ››


Smart Growth America worked with the City of Marquette and Marq-Tran to develop mobility management strategies for the region with a focus on Marquette’s Third Street Corridor. These strategies will improve marketing of existing transit service, explore alternatives for new service on Third St. and improve coordination across transit providers. Read the final report for Marquette or the supplemental materials ››

Traverse City

Smart Growth America worked with the Northwest Michigan Council of Governments, the Bay Area Transportation Authority, the Michigan Land Use Institute and other partners to develop a mobility management strategy for the Grand Traverse region that enhances transit service and builds on the region’s Grand Vision planning effort. Read the final report for Traverse City or the supplemental materials ››


Smart Growth America is partnering with the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission and other stakeholders in the Lansing region to develop mobility management strategies to improve cost efficiency and overall service coverage and quality for Non-Emergency Medical Transportation in the region. Read the final report for the Lansing region or the supplemental materials ››


Over the next several years Southeast Michigan will see several significant highway, bridge and transit construction projects with a total cost of over $5 billion. Smart Growth America is working with the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments, MDOT and other stakeholders in the region to develop transportation demand management strategies to mitigate the impact of this construction on the movement of people, goods and services in the region. These strategies will be designed to evolve into a more permanent use of TDM practices as a major part of Southeast Michigan’s overall transportation system. Read the final report for Michigan or the technical memo on performance measurement ››