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Mid-Ohio Valley transportation planners seek public input

PARKERSBURG — The Wood-Washington-Wirt Interstate Planning Commission is preparing for an updated Long-Range Transportation Plan for the Parkersburg-Marietta urbanized area.

For the development of the plan, WWW will be listening to public input regarding current transportation conditions, issues, needs and the public can also learn about the planning process and provide feedback in several ways.

The WWW is a metropolitan planning organization (MPO) that is responsible for responding to federal transportation legislation. It requires all urban areas to have a population over 50,000 to have a transportation planning process in place, to spend federal transportation dollars in those areas, according to WWW Transportation Planning Director Randy Durst.

The local area includes all of Wood County, and seven townships in Washington County, Ohio, primarily the townships along the Ohio River are primary purposes to develop the plan, according to Durst.

The first option is visiting the online public open house (https://horizon2045-movrc.hub.arcgis.com/) to view information related to the plan update, as well as complete a transportation survey and/or provide comments.

The second choice is to call, email, or visit WWW with questions and comments, or to obtain LRTP information and a transportation survey.

WWW are currently accepting comments for this initial phase of the LRTP update from until Dec. 31, 2020. All inquiries should be directed to Durst at 709 Market St., Parkersburg, WV 26101, calling (304) 422-4993, or by emailing Randy.durst@movrc.org

“The overall goal for the plan is to represent the local communities’ goals and priorities and for federal transportation dollars to be spent on those priorities,” Durst said. “We are really trying to gauge the priorities of the normal citizens that don’t work with this stuff on a daily basis. There could be some new things that come out of the process, that’s always hopeful. It could be some things that we’ve already talked about, planned for and just supports what we’ve already done. But we hope to just get an overall sense of consensus of the community and what direction that we should be looking at future projects,” he said.

The MPO for the Parkersburg-Marietta urbanized area, WWW is required by federal law to produce a LRTP and update it every four years. The LRTP will identify recommended improvements to the transportation system through year 2045.

The LRTP will consider needs related to roadways, transit, bikeways and walkways, rail, and aviation.

A summary of the open house’s comments submitted and how they are being considered by the project team and/or incorporated into the LRTP development will be posted to the project website approximately 30 days after the close of the online public open house. Additional opportunities for public input will also occur later in the planning process.

Contact Tyler Bennett at tbennett@newsandsentinel.com

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