The Board of Directors of the San Diego Association of Governments unanimously voted Friday to develop a new transportation plan for the county, putting the expected completion date of the agency’s 2019-2050 Regional Plan in jeopardy.

Until this point, SANDAG had expected to complete and adopt the Regional Plan by the end of the year, when it would begin serving as a roadmap for future development around the county. With the development of a new transportation plan and network, the plan could take until 2021 to be completed and adopted, according to the agency.

“Our region needs and deserves a big vision for our transportation system,” said SANDAG Board Chair and Poway Mayor Steve Vaus. “While there are risks in extending development of the Regional Plan, we believe this is the best path toward a truly transformative plan that meets all of our region’s goals.”

Details of the new transportation concept are nebulous. The board did not extrapolate exactly how drastic changes to the county’s transportation system will be, and the agency has yet to even begin developing the new plan.

San Diego Association of Governments Executive Director Hasan. Photo via

SANDAG intends to develop the plan in such a way that exceeds the county and state’s target reductions in greenhouse gas emissions while remaining on the forefront of transportation innovation.

The agency also intends to revolutionize the way people and things move through the county, even if that means shifting the county’s transportation network away from fossil-fuel burning vehicles.

“With the development of this bigger and bolder vision for our region’s future, we are striving not just to meet, but to exceed, state climate targets,” said SANDAG Executive Director Hasan Ikhrata. “The action plan the board approved today calls for a fast and safe transportation system with true alternatives that are as good as, if not better, than driving.”

The agency plans to begin drafting the plan later this year, with the release of a conceptual framework targeted for November. SANDAG officials stressed that the development process will include myriad opportunities for public input and feedback.

— City News Service

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