2050 Transportation Policy Plan

Goals, objectives, and policies

The 2050 Transportation Policy Plan, Regional Development Guide, and other system plans will use a shared structure and planning framework that has regional values, vision, and goals and system-specific objectives.  

Following from the goals and objectives are the policies that will guide the regional actions of the plan. Policies, for all the regional plans, are the statements of intent and approaches to regional issues or topics, independently and with partners.

The following are the working 2050 Transportation Policy Plan objectives and policies that tie back to the 2050 regional goals. These working drafts came out of a collaborative process with the 2050 TPP Advisory Work Group and Technical Working Group

Outreach and engagement are also informing the regional goals, shaping the transportation-specific objectives, and guiding the policy development. From early 2023 through early 2024, a range of stakeholders joined workshops, focus groups, or listening sessions to identify clear, shared values and policies that will serve transportation in the region, and support our transportation partners in reaching the region's goals and objectives.

Policies that guide all work

Policies that guide all work are foundational elements of the region’s 2050 Transportation Policy Plan. These policies and actions cut across all functional areas of the plan and can apply to all goals and objectives. These policies include the maintenance and updating of databases, applications, studies, and built infrastructure. They are intended to support a robust planning process and deliver a transportation system that meets the region’s goals.

  1. Maintain a robust and current set of data, maps, plans, processes, and applications to support regional transportation planning.
  2. Ensure the region has funding to achieve our goals.
  3. Asset management activities and investments should advance regional goals and objectives.

Objectives and policies by goal area


  • Historically disadvantaged communities are better connected to jobs, education, and other opportunities.
  • We repair and eliminate disparate and unjust impacts and harms to Black people, Indigenous people, and people of color.
  • We better meet the transportation needs of people who have disabilities or limited mobility.

Many of the policies and actions to advance transportation equity and inclusion have a basis in federal law and executive orders, like the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Executive Order 12898 on Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations, and Executive Order 14008 Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad. Executive Order 14008 includes the Justice40 directive to ensure 40 percent of the benefits of certain federal investments flow to disadvantaged communities. Other policies and actions reflect ongoing studies and Met Council wide work in equity and anti-displacement.


  1. Conduct engagement activities and implement shared decision making with historically underrepresented communities throughout policy making, planning, and project development to ensure equitable distribution of the benefits and burdens of transportation investments.
  2. Ensure communities and investments meet federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards and encourage partner government agencies to go above minimum standards to fully meet the needs of people who have a disability in infrastructure, services, communication, and engagement.
  3. Implement strategies against gentrification and displacement caused by transportation investments.
  4. Evaluate processes, policies, programs, and plans to ensure that community benefits and burdens from transportation investments are distributed equitably.
  5. Implement investments that repair harms and impacts to historically disadvantaged communities from past highway investments.


  • People do not die or face life-changing injuries when using any form of transportation.
  • People feel safer, more comfortable, and more welcome when using any form of transportation.
  • We mitigate and avoid harm to people caused by nearby transportation infrastructure and use (e.g., air quality, noise, light).
  • People are better connected to community and cultural resources that support their physical, emotional, and mental well-being.
  • People can increase physical activity with more opportunities to walk, roll, or bike.

Transportation is a key social determinant of health. These social determinants of health are the factors in the environment where people live that impact their health and quality of life. Safe and affordable access to housing, food, education, job opportunities, and community and cultural resources can contribute and support a region where our residents live healthy and rewarding lives with a sense of dignity and wellbeing.


  1. Plan for and invest in transportation facilities that complement existing and planned land use, and are dignified, and comfortable for all users.
  2. Work to eliminate fatalities and serious injuries from traffic crashes on the transportation system by 2050 using the Safe System approach.
  3. Emphasize and prioritize the safety of people outside of vehicles in the transportation right-of-way.
  4. Provide safe, secure, and welcoming transit facilities for all users.
  5. Use transportation investments and priorities to reduce negative health impacts influenced by the transportation system.
  6. Incorporate culturally appropriate placekeeping and placemaking into transportation projects, infrastructure, and right-of-way.


  • People and businesses trust that transportation infrastructure and services will withstand and recover quickly from natural and human-caused disruptions.
  • People can better meet their daily needs with timely, reliable, direct, and affordable options beyond driving alone.
  • People experience more predictable travel times without experiencing excessive delays when traveling on highways.
  • People and businesses can rely on predictable and cost-effective movement of freight and goods.

People, businesses, and institutions in our region depend on transportation to meet their daily needs. A transportation system that is resilient and reliable provides affordable access to destinations by any mode of travel people may choose. This plan will support a reliable transportation system with predictable travel times; transportation choices that provide access to jobs, services, and community destinations; a resilient transportation system that withstands natural and human-caused disruptions.

  1. Plan and implement a complete bicycle system including local networks that connect to the Regional Bicycle Transportation Network (RBTN) alignments to provide connections between regional destinations and local bicycle networks.
  2. Identify, prioritize, and improve locations where network gaps or physical barriers (like rivers, freeways, and rail corridors) may impede non-motorized travel.
  3. Plan for pedestrians at the local level and provide regional funding and tools to support local pedestrian plan implementation.
  4. Use a variety of transit service types to match transit service delivery to meet residents’ daily needs based on transit markets.
  5. Plan for, invest in, and implement a network of transitways to expand access to reliable, frequent, high-capacity transit services.
  6. Coordinate transit service delivery and operations to create a high-quality rider experience.
  7. Use travel demand management (TDM) to plan, fund, and promote multimodal travel options and alternatives to driving alone.
  8. Provide high-quality connections within and between modes of transportation.
  9. Implement a Complete Streets approach in policy, planning, operations, and maintenance of roads.
  10. Plan for and invest in first/last-mile freight connections between major freight generators and the regional highway system.
  11. Provide transportation options and transit advantages on roadway corridors with delay and travel time reliability issues.
  12. Focus highway mobility investments on corridors with high levels of existing delay and travel time reliability issues.
  13. Identify and implement activities and investments that will mitigate current or anticipated climate or weather-related impacts.
  14. Pursue opportunities to minimize disruption and non-recurring delay from weather, security, and traffic incidents.


  • The region’s transportation system minimizes its greenhouse gas emissions.
  • People have more reliable access to zero emissions vehicle infrastructure.
  • By 2050, the region reduces vehicle miles traveled by 20% per capita below 2019 levels.

At 25%, the transportation sector generates the largest share of greenhouse gas emissions in Minnesota. Most emissions in the transportation sector come from gas- and diesel-powered vehicles.  The region’s goal to lead on climate change envisions a region where we have mitigated greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) and support the state’s goal of a net-zero economy by 2050. Meeting this goal requires a comprehensive approach that includes supporting the transition to electric vehicles, reducing vehicle miles traveled, and other greenhouse gas mitigation efforts.


  1. Ensure the availability, visibility, and accessibility of electric vehicle charging infrastructure.
  2. Evaluate and mitigate the greenhouse gas impacts of transportation plans and projects.
  3. Prioritize projects that reduce vehicle miles traveled (VMT) through sustainable transportation options.


  • The region’s transportation system protects, restores, and enhances natural systems (e.g., air, water, vegetation, and habitat quality).

Natural systems include land, air, and water and their ecosystems. Transportation uses interact with these natural systems in a variety of ways: fragmenting natural habitats; noise, water, and air pollution; impacts from paved surfaces; and more. Typically, environmental analysis processes that are required by the state and federal governments address the impacts to natural systems caused by transportation projects. The policies that support the region’s goal to protect and restore natural systems will promote and encourage protection, mitigation, and restoration efforts.


  1. Prioritize projects which reduce total impervious surface coverage or minimize right-of-way needs.
  2. Use existing transportation rights-of-way and transportation project development to protect and restore natural systems.

Gathering input

To understand the vision and priorities transportation partners have for the future of the Twin Cities region, the study engaged both staff and policy makers from a breadth of stakeholders.
  • Cities and townships
  • Counties
  • The Met Council’s Transportation Advisory Board
  • Minnesota Department of Transportation
  • Federal Highway Administration
  • Freight shippers and haulers
  • Transit providers

In addition, these efforts made a concentrated effort to focus on community input to add to the feedback from transportation partners. A cross-section of people and perspectives brought their community and lived experiences to the conversation.

  • Equity-focused groups
  • Tribal communities
  • Climate-friendly transportation groups
  • Aging, disability, and social service groups
  • Business groups and associations
  • Corridor coalitions and specialty projects
  • Water and land use groups
  • Neighborhood-level organizations
Comment on our transportation plans and processes
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Transportation Policy Plan Information
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