Long Range Transportation System Guide

lrts cover 2015Transportation systems are increasingly required to respond to a variety of needs from addressing congestion to accommodating all modes and providing valuable public spaces.  In response to these challenges, MRMPO has developed the Long Range Transportation System Guide (LRTS Guide) as part of the 2040 Metropolitan Transportation Plan.

The LRTS Guide has five main guiding principles:

  1. Transportation and Land Use Integration

    The LRTS Guide provides recommendations on conceptual roadway design and roadway location based on planned surrounding land use.  This step involves having a clear idea of the land use planned for the area prior to designing and implementing changes to the road.
  2. Complete Streets

    Within LRTS, there are checklists, considerations and opportunities to help incorporate the needs of all roadway users at a variety of project and plan stages.
  3. Connectivity or “Complete Networks”

    LRTS provides recommendations to improve connectivity and system maps to help preserve future connections.
  4. Support the principles of the 2040 Preferred Scenario

    The principles of the Preferred Scenario involve identifying locations that currently have or are planned to have connections to transit and a mix of land uses. These “activity centers” have the land use elements that make them ideal candidates for encouraging trips made by transit, walking and bicycling. Pairing activity centers with roads that support all modes, in turn, reduces travel demand. The LRTS Guide supports the encouragement of trips made by foot or bicycle within activity centers with conceptual design guidance and recommended roadway connectivity.
  5. Support locally adopted plans and policies

    The LRTS Guide builds off of the comprehensive plans in the region. It follows Albuquerque/Bernalillo County’s centers and corridors theme and addresses Rio Rancho’s explicit call for a Complete Streets policy.

Long Range System Maps

The Long Range System maps provide the designated layers for different modes. Each map identifies current and future planned connections that will allow travel by different modes to major destinations. The maps communicate to a wide variety of stakeholders where proposed network connections are needed. This helps ensure that important network links are not overlooked as opportunities to improve the roadway arise.

Quick guide to using interactive web maps:

  • You can zoom in and out of the map using the + and – symbols on the map, or using the wheel on your mouse. You can also pan left or right by holding the left mouse button down and sliding the mouse.
  • Click on a map feature and a box will open with information about the feature. If the box reads (1 or 2) at the top, click on the arrow at the top of the box to see info on the other features you selected.
  • You can change the background of an aerial photo or other background by clicking on the Basemap button and selecting one of the options.
  • You can click on the Legend button to see what the map symbols represent or click on the Content button to see a list of map layers. When you click on the Content button, map layers can be turned on or off by checking or un-checking the box next to the layer name.

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Regional Character Areas

2040 lrts regional character areasDetermining the character area is the first step of the LRTS process. It is important to have a clear idea of the future land use character surrounding the roadway and then balance transportation demand with the critical need for the roadway to support adjacent land use. This map provides a regional picture of the different character areas based on the intensity of land use. In practice, character areas are determined on a much smaller scale. Factors that determine character area include local plans, ordinances, community input as well as the intensity of land use such as population and job density and the mix of land uses.




Long Range Roadway System (LRRS)

The LRRS shows the regional role for existing and future roadways in the overall network. The categories for regional roles are based upon functional classification, but principle arterials are broken into two groups: regional and community. Principal arterials in the region vary widely in terms of character and purpose. These new categories allow for these differences to be recognized in conceptual designs and other efforts.

PDF | Interactive Map





Long Range Bikeway System (LRBS)

The LRBS show both existing and future bikeways and trails. The interactive web map also shows pedestrian projects in the 2040 MTP and a variety of alignments such as the 50 Mile Activity Loop and U.S. Bicycle Route 66. 

PDF | Interactive Map








Conceptual Transit System

conceptual transit system smThe conceptual transit system outlines future transit routes and expected types of service for the routes. Like the other system maps, the conceptual transit system helps to identify roadways that are planned to include transit so that current projects can preserve right-of-way or plan for other elements that may be needed in the future.







Reference Material

Several publications were used to develop the LRTS Guide, however, there are two publications that provide the basis for the processes and much of the content in the LRTS Guide. 

designing walkable urban throroughfares coverDesigning Walkable Urban Thoroughfares: A Context Sensitive Approach

Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE), 2010

This ITE recommended practice provides the overall framework for relating land use and transportation.  The LRTS Guide expands and adapts material in this publication to apply to roadways in Central NM. This publication focuses on individual roadway segments and the surrounding land use.




planning urban roadway systems coverPlanning Urban Roadway Systems

Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE), 2015

Building upon Designing Walkable Urban Thoroughfares, this ITE recommended practice looks at roadway’s roles within a larger system. With adequate connectivity, the transportation system can provide layered networks that allow people to travel by different modes to important destinations, but not necessarily all on the same roadway.