CRCOG engages in planning for various transportation modes throughout the Capitol region.
Mobility Management programs connect people with disabilities, seniors, and low-income individuals with accessible, reliable transportation options. These programs also seek to identify gaps and barriers to public transportation that prevent individuals from using existing services. Once gaps have been uncovered, Mobility Managers work with partners from the transportation and human service communities to find creative solutions, creating a “one-stop shop” where people can find transportation service that meets their needs.
Mobility Management Programs are available throughout Connecticut. Mobility Managers within these organizations show individuals their transportation options and help identify gaps and barriers within existing transportation systems. While most of the Capitol Region is served by Way to Go Connecticut, the CRCOG towns of Columbia, Coventry, Mansfield, and Willington fall within the coverage area of the Eastern Connecticut Transportation Consortium. The websites, guidebooks, and contact information for these resources are listed below.
In 2007, CRCOG partnered with adjacent Regional Planning Agencies to develop the Locally Coordinated Public Transit Human Service Transportation Plan (LOCHSTP) for the Hartford Urbanized Area. This document was part of the Connecticut Department of Transportation’s (CTDOT) larger LOCHSTP for the State of Connecticut. LOCHSTP identified gaps in services and recommended strategies to improve access to transportation services for elderly, low-income, and disability populations. This Plan was updated in 2009.
Section 5310 is a federal grant program that provides funding for projects that aim to enhance transportation for seniors and individuals with disabilities. Every year, CRCOG works in collaboration with CTDOT to select projects for 5310 funding through a competitive application process that is open to nonprofit organizations, government authorities, and public transportation providers. These projects must aim to solve gaps in service that have been identified as part of LOCHSTP.
Application cycles for Section 5310 funding typically open in early spring for funding allocated during the previous federal fiscal year. For more information on the application process, please contact Ryan Faulkner or visit the CTDOT Section 5310 page.
Current 5310 Status:
The application cycle for Section 5310 funds is currently open. Please visit CTDOT’s Section 5310 Application Page to fill out an application.
The regional roadway system consists of a hierarchy of road types: freeways, major non-freeway roadways (arterials), and collector and local roadways. The freeways are limited access, grade-separated facilities whose function is to serve longer distance trips and through traffic. Arterial roadways are not limited access and generally have at-grade intersections. They typically serve a dual purpose of carrying longer distance trips, but also serve shorter trips and provide access to abutting land uses. The primary function of collector and local roads is proving access to abutting property.
The Capitol Region has 156 miles of freeways, which constitute only 3% of the total road miles, but these roads carry close to one-half of the total vehicle miles traveled (VMT). The arterial network comprises 14% of the entire road network and carries just over 31% of the total traffic. Collectors and local roads account for 83% of the total roadway network and serve about one fifth of the total regional travel.
In 2021, total travel in the region was about 8.4 billion vehicle miles traveled (VMT) over the course of the year. VMT is expected to grow approximately 14.5% by 2050, which calculates to be approximately 9.6 billion VMT per year by 2050.
To safely and efficiently manage vehicular traffic flow a number of initiatives are being advanced. Congestion management and traffic incident management strategies are monitored and advanced as well as freight initiatives and roadway studies (see below)
CRCOG, in partnership with CTtransit and the Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT), completed a Comprehensive Service Analysis (CSA) of bus service in the Hartford (2017) and New Britain/Bristol (2018) Divisions of CTtransit. This study included a detailed review of the existing CTtransit service and provided recommendations for improving service to meet the region’s needs.
Building on a recommendation from the Hartford Division CSA, CRCOG conducted a Transit Priority Corridors Study (2022) to identify priority measures to improve the speed and reliability of transit services in major Metro Hartford corridors.
More information about these efforts is available via the links below.
Commuter Parking lots
Commuters who want to avoid traffic congestion and save on commuting costs can leave their cars in commuter parking lots, commonly called park and ride lots, while they use carpools, vanpools, or buses for their trips to work. The Capitol Region includes 42 commuter parking lots across 27 municipalities. CRCOG began conducting biannual capacity counts for the Region’s commuter parking lots in Spring 2017. To view the data collected from these counts from 2017-2019, please click here.
The utilization of commuter parking lots has been greatly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated changes in working and travel behavior. CRCOG staff has continued conducting its usual lot counts in April and October to quantify the difference in utilization. The most recent counts can be found here. While counts in April 2023 showed a substantial increase over 2020 and 2021, usage of commuter lots in the Capitol Region remains 45% lower than the pre-pandemic average.
An interactive map of commuter parking lots throughout the state is available through the Connecticut Department of Transportation at https://cttravelsmart.org/. The CT Travel Smart site also includes information about lighting, shelters, and bus service that is available at each lot. Additional information about the relationship between commuter parking lots and Express Bus Service can be found on CTtransit’s website.
CRCOG is a proponent of expanded commuter and regional rail access in the Capitol Region and is excited to see expanded commuter rail service along the CTrail Hartford Line, which began in 2018. For more information on this upcoming service, please visit the Hartford Line website.
Moving forward, CRCOG will continue to support increased rail service in the region. Possible commuter connections from Hartford to Boston and New York along with the rail investment plan as a part of the NEC Future project would help to further connect the Hartford region with its neighbors to encourage economic growth and regional tourism.
The movement of freight is characterized by a complex interaction of public and private infrastructure, vehicular movements, and a rapidly changing market for freight movement overall. Due to the typical distances that freight is transported, CRCOG can only directly impact a small fraction of the infrastructure that is utilized move freight to, from, or through the region. Due to the location of the CRCOG region within the New England transportation networks, freight planning efforts must take into consideration a state and multi-state perspective. Therefore, an essential part of the CRCOG freight planning strategy is close interaction with neighboring planning organizations as well as the Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT) to ensure that freight needs within the region are being reflected in the planning efforts at the State and New England level. The Connecticut Department of Transportation completed its Statewide Freight Plan in November 2017. CRCOG was very involved in this effort and supported CTDOT as needed with stakeholder identification and outreach, data collection, and document review.
Identification of Regional Freight Concerns
Do you have concerns about freight movements or infrastructure in the Capitol Region? To identify areas of concern, please contact Cara Radzins.
If you would like to be added to our list of freight stakeholders in the Capitol Region, please send your name, company/affiliation, and email address to Cara Radzins.
CRCOG remains committed to transportation planning that is inclusive of vulnerable users such as pedestrians and bicyclists. For more information on CRCOG’s efforts to include these populations, please visit the Policy Development and Planning Department’s Complete Streets and Active Transportation page.
The Capitol Region’s “regional scale” airports include Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks and Brainard Airport in Hartford. Bradley, identified as the “Gateway to New England” is an important transportation facility and an engine of economic growth for the Capitol Region and the State of Connecticut. Brainard Airport provides corporate and private service. The Connecticut Airport Authority (CAA) manages Bradley International Airport and the state’s five general aviation airports (including Hartford-Brainard airport). There are also five important, smaller airports in the region: Robertson Airport (Plainville), Simsbury Airport (Simsbury), Skylark Airport (East Windsor), Ellington Airport (Ellington), and Salmon River Airfield (Marlborough). Airport links and publications are summarized below: