Bellingham Concurrency Program Update



City of Bellingham


City of Bellingham


Bellingham, WA

Transpo worked with the City of Bellingham to revise level of service standards and their transportation concurrency management ordinance. The new program employed an innovative methodology integrating land use and transportation planning principals; moving beyond the traditional auto-centric measurements of transportation networks. Adopted in 2008, the multimodal program utilizes a “plan-based” approach to promote infill development in locations where multimodal infrastructure (sidewalks, bicycle facilities, transit service, roadway capacity) is already in place.

Transpo also developed a streamlined concurrency administration process that reduced demand for City staff time and resources. The updated process measures, tracks, and monitors the “person trips” generated by new development on Bellingham’s transportation facilities and provides an annual “state of the transportation system” concurrency report for the City Council.

Transpo has continued working with the City to explore future refinements to the program. We conducted a pilot study using ViaCity that evaluated Route Directness Index (RDI) methodology as a base performance measurement to analyze and evaluate the quality of pedestrian and bicycle connectivity. Beyond applicability to the multimodal concurrency program, the City considered how ViaCity could be utilized for developing a pedestrian and bicycle master plan and future comprehensive plan updates.

This project won the 2009 APA/PAW Merit Award for Transportation Planning.