LEWISBURG — Residents in an eight-county area of central Pennsylvania are invited to give their input and share transportation issues to help shape the region’s next major transportation plan.

The SEDA-Council of Governments (SEDA-COG) Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) is updating its Long Range Transportation Plan which proposes practical solutions to transportation safety, maintenance, congestion, and mobility needs for Clinton, Columbia, Juniata, Mifflin, Montour, Northumberland, Snyder, and Union counties.

The plan identifies transportation needs, goals, projects, and policies for a 20-year planning horizon, and is required to be updated at five-year intervals. The plan establishes the vision and objectives that guide public decisions affecting transportation facilities and services in the region.

Jim Saylor, director of SEDA-COG’s Transportation Planning program, said one of the best ways the public can provide input is through SEDA-COG’s online transportation survey.

“The survey only takes about 10 minutes to complete, but it provides valuable information for us. Are there issues we’ve missed? Does what we’ve gathered reflect your experience?” Saylor said.

“This the first time we’ve asked for input using a tool like this and it will help us complete the plan and better focus on identifying transportation needs.”

The survey is open now through March 3 and can be found at a website which has been dedicated to the plan:https://lrtp-seda-cog.hub.arcgis.com/

The website also features an interactive map that shows proposed projects, traffic volumes and congestion, bridge and pavement conditions, freight generators, safety problem areas, flooding and rockfall prone areas, and railroads.

Don Kiel, senior principal program analyst for SEDA-COG’s Transportation program, is leading the planning effort.

“We’ve added new data that people can look at and to help focus feedback on the region’s transportation system and proposed new approaches to ranking our regional transportation projects for priority funding. We are employing new and better data that is important in selecting or prioritizing projects,” Kiel said.

Additional public outreach will occur from March to April, along with plan finalization.

The finalized plan will be up for adoption at the May public MPO meeting.

As a community and economic development agency, SEDA-COG enhances the quality of life and economic advantage for residents and businesses in 11 central Pennsylvania counties through its vital partnerships and initiatives.

SEDA-COG also is an advocate for the interests of its communities at the state and federal levels.

For more information, visit the SEDA-Council of Governments website at:www.seda-cog.org.

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