Planning with SB 743

Transportation Sustainability Program

San Francisco, CA

In response to SB 743, California’s switch towards requiring VMT assessment for environmental review instead of LOS, the City has undertaken the Transportation Sustainability Program. The TSP, as it is known, uses a three-pronged approach:

  1. Invest: Enhance Transportation to Support Growth – The City wishes to accommodate the majority of travel demand growth in transit, cycling, and walking modes. The “invest” prong enacts a new Transit Sustainability Fee to provide the levels of investment necessary to construct and maintain facilities to accommodate those increases.
  2. Align: Modernize Environmental Review – The City saw the practice of LOS ran counter to many of the city’s transportation policies and settled on VMT per capita to better assess the impacts of new development. The City now requires that new development generates at least 15 percent less VMT per capita for a given land-use.
  3. Shift: Encourage Sustainable Travel – For projects that do not meet the 15 percent threshold, the City will use TDM as mitigation to reduce VMT to meet the threshold. Additionally, most new development projects will be required to comply with a proposed TDM Ordinance.

Fehr & Peers is proud to have played an important role in the City honing its thinking around TDM programs and policies. The ordinance requires that a new development project collect a certain number of points based on various aspects of the development (parking supply, scale, geography, etc.). The TDM measures that a project sponsor may consider are assigned a certain number of points derived in part from efficacies forecasted by our TDM+ tool; specifically, a version that we customized for the City of SF.

Mobility Plan 2035

Los Angeles, CA

Building on one of the largest transit expansion programs in the country, Fehr & Peers led the effort to help Los Angeles create a new Mobility Plan for 2035. The plan is organized around a new set of community goals for: safety first, world class infrastructure, access for all Angelenos, collaboration, communication, informed choices, clean environments and healthy communities. These new goals are a reflection of changing community attitudes and statewide shifts in legislation around complete streets and climate change, including SB 743. Through the plan, the city designated a series of enhanced networks for walking, bicycling, and taking transit. Their recent Complete Streets Design Guide focuses on safety, context sensitivity, and on target operating speeds for drivers in the modification of city streets.

Fehr & Peers is also working with the city to establish procedures for analysis around the new project evaluation metrics recommended in the plan such as VMT. This effort includes updating the City’s travel demand forecasting model to increase its sensitivity to transit and calibrate the model to local trip lengths for use in VMT calculations. Recommendations will include modifications to the transportation impact study process, new significance thresholds for land use and transportation projects, a new project level evaluation tool that reports VMT related outcomes, and consideration of VMT based changes to the transportation fee program.