Smart Growth & Regional Collaboration
Accessible, frequent, and fast public transit gets people to their destinations without contributing to traffic and is an important factor to lowering carbon emissions. Connected, well-maintained, and extensive trails, bike lanes, and sidewalks encourage active transportation, health, and recreation. Making roadways safe, comfortable, and accessible for users of all ages, abilities, income, and travel modes leads to healthier and stronger communities.
MAPC’s Transportation Department promotes sustainable transportation and strong infrastructure throughout the region in many ways, including transportation corridor planning, parking and land use studies, participating in projects to build bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure, coordinating transportation funding programs, and advocating for transportation finance reform. MAPC is one of 22 members of the Boston Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), which carries out comprehensive and cooperative transportation planning in the region.
To find a comprehensive library of our past transportation work, visit MAPC’s Publications Library.
Explore the categories below to learn more about the multi-faceted ways MAPC works to improve connectivity in the region.
Looking for more information about something transportation or transit-related?
You’ve come to the right place. Check out the pages below for in-depth material on our research, reports, partners, and more.
Emerging Trends in Transportation
MAPC supports transportation that provides sustainable, accessible, and affordable service to the 101 cities and towns in the MAPC region. We recognize the transformative benefits that autonomous vehicles can have for Massachusetts’ economy, environment, and quality of life – as well as the challenges that could result from disruption to existing forms of mobility.
Autonomous vehicles will affect not only our transportation system, but also our economy, safety, workforce, environment, land use, and energy use. Learn more about MAPC's role in planning for autonomous vehicles.
Get it Rolling
Get it Rolling provides an overview of how to improve bus transit, implement pilot programs, and communicate with community members. It identifies crucial stakeholders and project milestones, offers examples of successful strategies, and distills lessons learned.
Correcting transportation inequities and injustices of the past can start with better buses. Simple, low-cost, and quick bus improvements create better service for communities, neighborhoods, and riders who have been disproportionately impacted by inadequate transit service in the past. These projects can ease delays during peak commute hours, facilitate mobility throughout the region, contribute to local and regional climate goals, and increase safety on our street.
MAPC has been following the MBTA Bus Network redesign since 2019. MAPC hosted an event in partnership with ITDP to examine other Bus Network Redesigns throughout domestically and internationally. Read the project overview here.
Better Bus Project
The Network Effect
Over twenty US cities and regions, with even more across the globe, have pursued bus network redesign as a means of transforming bus-based transit and meeting the changing needs of a growing population. How have some of these cities grappled with the challenges of planning, communicating, and then implementing what are often sweeping changes to their bus operations? What can planners and elected officials in Greater Boston learn from both the successes and lessons of other cities/regions in preparing for a bus network redesign?
Reducing the demand for parking is closely linked with reducing vehicle trips, so many of the programs recommended for reducing parking demand are the same ones recommended for trip reduction through Transportation Demand Management (TDM). TDM programs typically aim to reduce drive-alone trips through strategies that encourage carpooling or the use of alternative modes.
Transportation demand management focuses on increasing transportation and transit system efficiency by understanding how people are using existing infrastructure. Read case studies and learn about measures already implemented by municipalities here.
Parking and Transportation Demand Management
Parking is a point of contention in communities across Metro Boston, yet there’s little hard data about how much parking we have and how much we need.
Communities across the MAPC region strive to make their streets more accessible to all users. MAPC is aware of the growth and transportation across our region.
To support municipalities with advancing their transportation goals our department conducts bike and pedestrian plans to evaluate existing conditions, review opportunities for improvement, and provide recommendations for supportive infrastructure.
Landline is MAPC’s vision to connect our greenways and trails into a seamless network.
Our complete database of trails and bicycle facilities can be found at trailmap.mapc.org.
Two examples of MAPC's Covid support are the Taxi program and MassDOT shared Streets and Spaces grant program. The COVID-19 pandemic presented a degree of uncertainlty – through the assistance of agency partners MAPC was able to support relief efforts across the region. The examples below are two programs that the transportation participated in to support Covid relief.
The Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC), in partnership with MassDevelopment, has developed a statewide grant program to provide funding for state and municipal agencies, regional transit authorities (RTAs), eligible non-profits, and Health and Human Services (HHS) providers to contract with a taxicab, livery, or hackney businesses for transportation and delivery needs.
This program is funded through a portion the MassDevelopment Transportation Infrastructure Enhancement Fund (TIEF). The purpose of the Fund is to provide financial assistance to small businesses operating in the taxicab, livery, or hackney industries to encourage the adoption of new technologies and advanced service, safety and operational capabilities and support workforce development.
MAPC’s Transportation team works on a wide range of projects with cities, towns, and other partners. How can we work with your community?
Visit MAPC’s publications library to see past parking studies, complete streets work, transit-oriented development solutions, and more.
If you’re interested in working with MAPC, contact Transportation Director Eric Bourassa at email@example.com.
Parking is the link between land use and transportation planning, and the way we set parking policies has an enormous impact on the built environment and how we choose to get around. MAPC is available to help municipalities diagnose their parking problems and recommend solutions with downtown parking occupancy and turnover studies, zoning recommendations, and more.
Bicycle & Pedestrian
- Melrose Commuter Rail Corridor Visioning
- Needham/Newton Rail Right-of-Way Transit Concept
- Re-envisioning Wollaston: Neighborhood planning around the Wollaston MBTA station
- Green Line Extension
- MAGIC Mobility Transit Study
- Central Mass Join Trail/Busway Right-of-Way Study
- South Acton Commuter Rail report
- Dedham TOD Study
- Framingham TOD Study
- Natick Center Plan
- Reimagining Railroad - Gloucester TOD Study
- Braintree Ivory Street Corridor: A Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Opportunity
- Downtown Foxborough Parking Analysis
- Malden Center Parking Management Plan: Final Report
- Cohasset Village Parking Analysis
- Scituate Harbor Parking Analysis
- Quincy Wollaston Center Parking Analysis
- Downtown Marlborough Parking Analysis
- Downtown Holliston Parking Study
- Littleton Commuter Rail Parking Study
- Grove Hall Parking Study
Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization
The Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) is responsible for conducting the federally-required transportation and planning process for the Boston region. MAPC and the Central Transportation Planning Staff (CTPS) provide planning support for the MPO and for the region’s communities.
THE MPO develops a vision for the Greater Boston region and uses the plan to allocate federal and state funds toward transportation projects such as roadways, transit, pedestrian, and bicycle projects. This work includes developing regional bicycle and pedestrian plans and providing alternative land-use analyses for upcoming projects.
MAPC is one of 22 members of the MPO charged with carrying out comprehensive and cooperative transportation planning. The MPO is responsible for the development, review, and approval of three key planning projects: