for the City of Lawton and Comanche County
The Lawton Metropolitan Planning Organization (LMPO) is the federally designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the Lawton Urbanized Area, as defined by the 2010 U.S. Census. Any urbanized area or contiguous urbanized areas, as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau, containing a population of greater than 50,000 are required to have an MPO. An MPO is a planning agency established by federal law to assure a continuing, cooperative, and comprehensive transportation planning process takes place that results in the development of plans, programs, and projects that consider all transportation modes and supports the goals of the community.
The Federal Highway Act of 1962 mandated that metropolitan areas with a population of 50,000 or more have a long range transportation plan and program before Federal highway funds could be spent on highway projects. In addition, the long range plan was to be based on the 3C planning process (comprehensive, continuing and cooperative). In the Lawton Metropolitan Area, the transportation planning responsibility was originally entrusted to the Lawton Metropolitan Area Planning Commission as the MPO. In 2003, the City Planning Commission (CPC) was redesignated as the MPO by the Governor of Oklahoma. The transportation bill Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) requires the membership of all MPOs to consist entirely of local elected officials, officials of public agencies that administer or operate major modes of transportation in the metropolitan area, and appropriate State officials. To meet this requirement, the Governor, through the Oklahoma Department of Transportation, redesignated the Transportation Policy Board as the Lawton MPO effective November 1, 2013.
The planning and program management functions are administered and implemented by the City of Lawton’s Planning Division, which provides staff, technical and clerical support.
Lawton Metropolitan Area Transportation Study Boundary
The Lawton Metropolitan Area Transportation Study (LMATS) is the geographic area in which the metropolitan transportation planning process required by 23 U.S.C. 134 and 49 U.S.C. 5303 must be carried out. The LMATS area is basically bounded to the north by Rogers Lane/US 62, to the east by 90th Street, to the south by Coombs Road and to the west by Deyo Mission Road.
The LMPO Area, located in southwest Oklahoma, is located adjacent to Interstate 44 approximately 80 miles south of Oklahoma City and approximately 40 miles north of Wichita Falls, Texas.
The LMPO is federally mandated to provide comprehensive transportation planning for the Lawton Metropolitan Transportation Study Area. Federal regulations establish various requirements MPOs must address during the transportation planning process:
Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) was signed into law on July 6, 2012. MAP-21 creates a streamlined, performance-based, and multi-modal program to address challenges such as improving safety, maintaining infrastructure, reducing traffic congestion, improving efficiency of the transportation system and freight movement, protecting the environment, and reducing delays in project delivery. MAP-21 enhances the transportation planning process incorporating performance goals, measures, and targets into the process of identifying needed transportation improvements and project selection.
In addition to incorporating performance-based criteria, MAP-21 continues the processes of SAFETEA-LU requiring MPOs to consider eight specific factors in the development of transportation plans and programs. These include:
- Support the economic vitality of the metropolitan area, especially by enabling global competitiveness, productivity, and efficiency;
- Increase the safety of the transportation system for motorized and nonmotorized users;
- Increase the security of the transportation system for motorized and nonmotorized users;
- Increase the accessibility and mobility of people and for freight;
- Protect and enhance the environment, promote energy conservation, improve the quality of life, and promote consistency between transportation improvements and State and local planned growth and economic development patterns;
- Enhance the integration and connectivity of the transportation system, across and between modes, for people and freight;
- Promote efficient system management and operating; and
- Emphasize the preservation of the existing transportation system.
The Transportation Technical Advisory Committee coordinates transportation issues at the technical level and provides technical advice to the Policy Board.
The functions of the Technical Advisory Committee include the following:
- Present transportation agenda items to various agencies;
- Receive presentations from various agencies;
- Develop the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP);
- Review transportation plans and studies;
- Make recommendations to the Transportation Policy Board;
- Review transportation issues at the request of the Policy Board; and
- Develop and review the UPWP.
The Transportation Policy Board (TPB) is the final approval authority for transportation planning. The Board reviews and approves the overall work program and makes policy determinations concerning the transportation plan and the transportation improvement program. The functions of the Policy Board include the following:
- Develop and maintain a comprehensive transportation planning program in conformance with Section 134 and 49 U.S.C.;
- Develop and approve all policy procedures for transportation planning in the LMA;
- Review and approve the Transportation Plan and the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP);
- Ensure that established Public Involvement Procedures are carried out appropriately for all major transportation activities;
- Establish and revise the metropolitan area boundary as required by law;
- Prepare certifications; and
- Review and approve UPWP.