Local Area Transportation Review Guidelines reviewed by Planning Board at July 1 meeting

July 1, 2021

Update to guidelines used in support of the implementation of the transportation-related elements of the Growth and Infrastructure Policy

Wheaton, MD – The Montgomery County Planning Department, part of The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC), presented the new Local Area Transportation Review (LATR) Guidelines to the Planning Board at its July 1 meeting. The LATR guidelines provide guidance to transportation engineers, consultants, planners and other development stakeholders on how to implement the transportation review process required by the 2020-2024 Growth and Infrastructure Policy (GIP). The GIP ensures that development in Montgomery County is accompanied by appropriate and sufficient transportation facilities. The guidelines are used to estimate the impacts of development on the transportation network and determine effective ways to mitigate that impact.

The new guidelines refine the context-sensitive and multi-modal transportation analysis methods reflected in the 2017 LATR Guidelines. In addition, the guidelines incorporate new GIP requirements that better reflect the county’s multi-modal and Vision Zero-related goals and objectives in the context of the evaluation of local transportation system performance for subdivision applications.

View the 2021 LATR Guidelines.

Key changes to the Growth and Infrastructure Policy that are reflected in the updated LATR Guidelines include:

  • Prioritize motor vehicle mitigation strategies designed to improve travel safety.
  • Require a Vision Zero Statement for all projects estimated to generate 50 or more net new weekday peak-hour person trips.
  • Introduce the application of a Pedestrian Level of Comfort (PLOC) measure to evaluate pedestrian system adequacy.
  • Eliminate the motor vehicle adequacy test in Red Policy Areas (Metrorail Station Policy Areas and Purple Line Station Areas).
  • Exempt bioscience facilities, for the next four years, from all LATR tests to provide faster approval of facilities that support biological research and development or the manufacturing of related products and provide significant employment opportunities in the county.
  • Update the scoping and mitigation requirements for developer-funded bikeways, sidewalks and bus shelters to be more robust to evaluate adequacy.