SEMCOG develops and implements a Congestion Management Process (CMP) (pdf, 2.3MB) to improve mobility in the region. Congestion is the traffic level at which a roadway becomes saturated and unable to support intended volumes of travelers. Congestion levels are most severe during time periods when there are more reasons to travel, in places where there is a greater density of activity, and on roads where there are fewer alternative routes. Congestion can unpredictably delay travelers, increase the risk of vehicular crashes, and contribute to degrading regional air quality. CMP information helps SEMCOG and its regional partners develop policies for managing congestion and projects that mitigate congestion. The CMP has three basic steps:
- Monitor and evaluate transportation system performance,
- Identify congestion problems, and
- Evaluate and recommend mitigation strategies.
In managing congestion, the CMP draws from congestion mitigation strategies that promote pooled travel options (carpool, vanpool, transit, biking, walking), emphasize improving how roads operate (ITS, access management), and increasing roadway capacity when other management strategies are not effective.