Southeast Michigan Council of Governments

Get Involved / Stay Informed

Public Involvement Plan

Introduction

The Woodward Avenue Rapid Transit Alternatives Analysis (AA) will review rapid transit options for a 27-mile corridor along Woodward Avenue from Detroit to Pontiac. The study area includes the cities of Detroit, Highland Park, Ferndale, Pleasant Ridge, Royal Oak, Huntington Woods, Berkley, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, Bloomfield Township, and Pontiac, representing corridor communities with diverse character(s).

Public involvement for the Woodward Avenue Rapid Transit AA project will be undertaken in two phases. Phase I is the first 90-120 days of the project. During this time, the purpose and need for the project will be developed along with a long list of possible alternatives to be reviewed and analyzed in the AA. Using evaluation criteria that is technically solid and reflective of the priorities of the study area communities and the funding constraints, this long list of alternatives will be reviewed. The most feasible option(s) from this early screening will move onto the AA. Early screening is designed to leverage the data and technical analyses from previous studies so resources can be used efficiently to advance the project.

The goals of the Phase I public involvement process are to:

  • Introduce the public to the new SEMCOG- sponsored AA project and re-introduce the concept of rapid transit along the Woodward corridor.
  • Seek public input on the Purpose and Need for the project and in the development of transit alternatives.
  • Familiarize public agencies and citizens across income, age, race, education, ethnic, and lingual lines with the Alternatives Analysis (AA) process and related existing conditions along the study corridor.
  • Solicit public input regarding the project.

The post- 90-120 day public involvement phase (Phase II) will center on the public's introduction to proposed rapid transit alternatives, the public's engagement in the evaluation of proposed alternatives, and the selection of one or more alternatives to move forward in the AA process, culminating in a Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA).

A thoughtful and structured public participation program results in plans that stakeholders and the broader community can support. The public's aspirations and concerns are critical to the shaping and evaluation of alternatives, and will thus be solicited and examined extensively throughout the public involvement process. However, those aspirations and concerns must be managed and tempered with the reality of what is feasible in the corridor. The public involvement team will pursue this approach in a manner consistent with the goals, strategies and techniques described in SEMCOG's December 2011 Public Involvement Plan. Feedback from the public obtained through this period will serve as considerations/inputs in the Purpose and Need Statement, as well as in the development of alternatives.

Public involvement activities for the Woodward Avenue Rapid Transit AA project will be grounded in SEMCOG's five public involvement goals:

  • EDUCATE-SEMCOG engages in public involvement efforts that support inclusion and a knowledgeable public that is able to provide informed feedback for input into the decision-making process.
  • HELP LOCAL GOVERNMENTS-SEMCOG assists local governments with advertising for public meetings, hearings, and general information through educational campaigns, its website, hot lines, newspapers, and other media.
  • ENCOURAGE SPECIFIC INDIVIDUAL ACTIONS-SEMCOG promotes targeted actions by the public in support of campaigns.
  • SOLICIT INPUT/FEEDBACK FROM THE PUBLIC-SEMCOG actively seeks public input/feedback on a continual basis through surveys, email and telephone comment lines, community vision sessions and public meetings.
  • CONTINUE TO IMPROVE-SEMCOG regularly evaluates its methods of public involvement and seeks to enhance the public involvement process
  • The public involvement team believes that the public can be engaged in a more meaningful way through their existing networks in communities.

Download the full 90-Day Public Involvement Plan