Freight Cluster Plans

Program Background

The 2016 Atlanta Regional Freight Mobility Plan Update identified the need to conduct local, small area freight planning in the Atlanta Region to address transportation issues related to this key part of the region’s economy.  The Freight Cluster Plan Program was created to address this need, and it provides local governments and Community Improvement Districts (CIDs) funds for local planning with a focus on freight movement. The purpose of freight cluster plans is to address transportation planning, traffic operations, and related planning needs, and to identify recommended projects and policy changes to address those needs.

This program is intended to complement the CTP program and assist project sponsors by clearly defining goals, needs, and priorities for the study area.  Freight Cluster Plans focus on facilitating efficient movement of freight, improving access to jobs, reducing traffic congestion, changes in the freight industry, and improving safety, mobility, and access for all roadway users.

The project recommendations from each plan will form the basis for future funding requests from local sponsors during ARC Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) and Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) update cycles, as well as future funding requests via GDOT, FHWA, and other sources.  These plans, while focused on local issues and needs, also serve as the groundwork for regional planning efforts led by the Atlanta Regional Commission.

Work Scope and Budget Template

A Work Scope and Budget Template for the ARC Freight Cluster Plan program was developed for project sponsors.  Similar to the template for ARC’s Comprehensive Transportation Plan (CTP) program, this template ensures that minimum planning standards are met and that there is consistency throughout the Freight Cluster Plan program.  Project sponsors tailor the scope from this template to their individual needs, specifying their study area, schedule, and issues specific to their community.

Completed Freight Cluster Plans

The first round of Freight Cluster Plans was completed in late 2020 and early 2021. Each of these plans had multiple deliverables which as part of the analysis and planning process, which then resulted in project and policy recommendations.  These plans, and their deliverables, include the following:

 

Pre-Proposal Meeting – January 2018

On January 22, 2018, ARC hosted a pre-proposal meeting for the Freight Cluster Plan Program.  Since this was a new planning program at ARC, this optional meeting was an opportunity to provide detailed information and set expectations for consulting companies who may potentially work on these pans in the future.

At this meeting, staff from ARC presented information on the overall freight cluster planning program, including project budgets, program goals, potential scope content, and other related content. Staff from each of the four project sponsors also presented information specific to their study areas and likely scope.  The procurement process for each plan will be managed by the plan’s local sponsor, similar to the Comprehensive Transportation Plan program.  The agenda and presentation files from this meeting are below.