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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Final Installment…Communities in Motion: Why Do You Care?

As you are likely aware, Communities in Motion 2040 was approved by the COMPASS Board of Directors in July. We are now moving from the “planning” stage to the “implementation” stage of the plan.

Throughout the planning process I have shared with you comments submitted by members of the public regarding why they care…or think others should care…about long-range planning in general and Communities in Motion in particular. Since the plan is now adopted, we have wrapped up this exercise, so this is my final blog in the “Why do you care?” series.

Without further ado, here is the final list of reasons submitted by you of why you care:
  • Transportation leads to jobs, which lead to higher paying jobs, which is people’s concern.
  • Don’t take what we have for granted – it didn’t just happen. Past generations planned and paid for the infrastructure we have today – it didn’t just materialize.
  • We need to work together for the greater good – it’s for everyone.
  • We should visualize what it would be like without good infrastructure – use our resources wisely so we continue to have it as good as we do now.
  • We need to work now to solve/avoid current and future problems – congestion, delay, and lack of mobility, and work to keep access to recreation/outdoors close to home.
  • We should maximize our use of limited resources for the greater good.
  • People cared before us and built for us.  We should pay it forward with planning and monetary investments.
  • We need to raise awareness that resources will be limited in the future, even if they aren’t now.
  • I think people should care about transportation, and especially alternative transportation, because every time I ride my bike in a bike lane that is so narrow in places that it isn’t even large enough for the “bike lane” symbol, every time I begin to cross State Street (with the green light and pedestrian “walk” sign lit!), and nearly get run over by an obstinately ignorant right-turning car, and every time I breathe deep in sheer joy at my daily commute on the greenbelt, I am more convinced than ever that we, as a community and a society, must fundamentally change the parameters of how we go about getting from point A to point B.  This earth we inhabit, and indeed our very lives, depends upon it.

While we have completed our four-year exercise of continually asking “why do you care?” that doesn’t mean that question, or the answers to it, are any less important. As was stated by more than one person above, past generations cared about the future and we have benefitted from that. It is now our job to do the same for our children and grandchildren.

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Community Planning Association of Southwest Idaho

COMPASS is the designated Metropolitan Planning Organization responsible for transportation planning in Ada and Canyon Counties. The COMPASS Board comprises 39 members representing the cities, counties, highway districts, educational institutions, state agencies, and other entities within the two counties. COMPASS plays an important role in making decisions about future long-range transportation needs in the Treasure Valley, taking into consideration environmental and economic factors that affect the quality of life.