TPO Receives Federal Certification

The Knoxville Regional TPO successfully completed the federal certification review of the metropolitan transportation planning and programming process.

Every four years, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the Federal Transportation Administration (FTA) are required to jointly review and evaluate the planning process of the TPO. This ensures that our plans meet federal regulations.

As part of the certification process, the TPO submitted a list of major accomplishments since 2020. Some of the highlights from the past four years include the adoption of:

  • Mobility Plan 2045
  • Public Outreach Plan
  • Regional Roadway Safety Action Plan
  • Transportation Improvement Program

The following studies were also completed by the TPO and regional transit providers:

  • KAT Re-Imagined Study
  • Transit Coordination Study
  • Regional Transit Study

These accomplishments, along with participation and input from TDOT, TPO staff, TPO Technical Committee and Executive Board members, and the public, were considered in the review and evaluation process.

The FHWA and the FTA found that the planning process carried out in the Knoxville regional area meets federal requirements and reported no corrective actions.

Beyond meeting the federal requirements, the TPO exceeded expectations and received commendations in these areas:

  • Organizational structure — The TPO maintained a high level of performance.
  • Performance based planning and programming — This specifically acknowledges the Regional Pavement Management System.
  • Transportation Improvement program development and management — This recognition is in regard to the TPO’s biannual project review meetings that help reduce project delivery delays.

The final report includes recommendations for consideration in our work program, most of which will be covered by Mobility Plan 2050:

  • Collaborate with TDOT and local planning partners to develop projects for TDOT’s 10-year plan,
  • Implement a formal review of the transit planning agreement with the regional transit partners to ensure consistency in plans and programs,
  • Add a performance measure dashboard to the website so the public can better understand regional transportation data and system performance targets,
  • Align freight development plans in Mobility Plan 2050 with TDOT’s Statewide Multimodal Freight Plan, and
  • Continue to develop plans that incorporate safety and equity for vulnerable road users.

This certification will remain in effect until 2028, when the review and evaluation will be repeated.

Mobility Plan 2050 Update

The Knoxville Regional Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) is a federally required organization that is responsible for the transportation planning process in Knox County and parts of Anderson, Blount, Loudon, Roane and Sevier counties.

We recently began an update to our long-range transportation plan, Mobility Plan 2050, which will examine the current state of transportation in and around the Knoxville region and make recommendations for future investments. Regional transportation planning involves roads, public transportation, sidewalks and bicycle paths, and freight movement (rail, water, or air), all of which will be considered for update under Mobility Plan 2050. To better understand how these modes can be accommodated, the planning process looks at  job forecasts, commuting patterns, congestion trends, crash patterns, pedestrian and bicycle facilities, transit use, and more.

We encourage community feedback throughout the update, as it guides the decisions we make and the transportation projects that are prioritized. Each person in our region has unique needs and interacts with transportation differently, and we want to know the transportation issues you face.

Our first round of community engagement concluded in February, after receiving feedback from a survey, an interactive map, and community meetings. The findings from those efforts have been published in an Outreach Summary.

As the update to Mobility Plan 2050 is set to conclude in May 2025, there is still an opportunity to provide input.  The public is encouraged to continue taking the survey and commenting on the interactive map and to share these opportunities with others. Information regarding future community engagement meetings and update announcements will be available at

Mobility Plan 2050 Update

Because the Knoxville region has more than 50,000 people who call it home, Federal laws require that a Metropolitan Planning Organization be formed to make decisions impacting the region’s transportation system. In our region, that’s us, the Knoxville Regional Transportation Planning Organization (TPO)! The TPO is responsible for the transportation planning process in Knox County and parts of Anderson, Blount, Loudon, Roane and Sevier counties.

The TPO is getting started on an update of our metropolitan transportation plan, or Mobility Plan 2050.  Completing this plan update allows us to receive federal money for transportation projects in our region. It also ensures that we are making the best long-term decisions for our residents, employers, and visitors.

Mobility Plan 2050 will look 25 years into the future, determining what we need to do now in anticipation of what we’ll need then. We’re starting the project by evaluating the current state of our transportation system. These existing conditions, combined with expectations for growth and infrastructure needs, are the foundation on which we start to build the vision for our future.

That evaluation includes things like job forecasts, commuting patterns, congestion trends, crash patterns, pedestrian and bicycle facilities and vulnerabilities, transit use, and more. In addition to this information, a major component of the Mobility Plan update is the consideration of how people in our region access benefits like quality jobs, adequate healthcare, education services, and other daily needs like healthy food and affordable housing. We use planning processes to prioritize transportation investments that improve access to these benefits for all population groups regardless of socioeconomic status or abilities.

Knowing that every resident has unique needs and uses the transportation system differently, we need your input on our region’s infrastructure. Your feedback guides our decision making and impacts which transportation projects rise to the top of the list when it comes times to fund them. Once these projects are identified in the Plan, they will start to move through the project development process. Depending on how large a project is, it can take 5, 10, or even 20 years to complete, which is why we need to start planning now.

Help us get started by taking the survey and commenting on our interactive map!

TPO Adopts Regional Roadway Safety Action Plan

The TPO completed work in June on a Regional Roadway Safety Action Plan. This plan is the first of its kind for the Knoxville region. It builds on the work we’ve been doing for years to analyze, share, and put to use traffic crash data. It also recognizes the movement across the U.S., including within the U.S. Department of Transportation, to take a Safe System approach to traffic violence. The Safe System approach acknowledges that humans make mistakes, and that deaths and serious injuries are not acceptable and can be prevented.

The safety plan serves as a blueprint for the TPO and our partners as we work toward the ambitious goal of reducing fatalities and serious injuries in our region by two-thirds by the year 2045. 

The plan process included a regional survey, which found that:

  • 92% of respondents were willing to add at least a few minutes to their commute in order to achieve safer streets
  • 90% supported creating more sidewalks and high-visibility street crossings to make walking safer in our region
  • 86% favored adding Complete Streets elements such as bikeways, street trees, and lighting to our roadways
  • 76% supported removing traffic lanes and/or on-street parking to help create Complete Streets
  • 53% favored reducing speed limits to boost roadway safety

The plan identifies projects, strategies and action steps that the TPO and our partners can take to reduce and, ultimately, eliminate traffic fatalities and serious injuries. 
Members of the public play a role as well. Drivers can seek out education, such as driver’s ed for young drivers and this class for teens offered by the Knoxville Police Department, classes through AAA and AARP for experienced drivers, and classes offered by Bike Walk Knoxville. Drivers can also explore other ways to get around – including transit, carpooling, and bicycling – through Smart Trips. And bicyclists – or those curious about bicycling – can learn about riding safely with tipsheets, videos and links to local classes through the League of American Bicyclists.

Request for Qualifications for Travel Demand Forecasting Model Update Services

Knoxville-Knox County Planning, an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action Employer, is soliciting qualifications from professional consultant/engineering firms in relation to “Travel Demand Forecasting Model Update Services”. The purpose of this effort is to result in selection of a consultant to perform multiple services under separate task orders for progressive updates to the travel demand forecasting model used by the Knoxville Regional TPO staff for various transportation planning purposes.

Applications are due to Knoxville-Knox County Planning on or before 4:00 p.m. EDT on Friday, July 21, 2023. More information is available at

Transit Program of Projects Public Hearing Scheduled

The Executive Board of the Knoxville Regional Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) will hold a Public Hearing at its regular meeting on Wednesday, April 26, 2023 at 9:00 a.m. in the Small Assembly Room of the City-County Building, 400 Main Street, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the purpose of considering public comment both written and oral on the proposed Program of Projects (POP) funded by Fiscal Year 2023 Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Section 5307 Urbanized Area Formula, Section 5339 Bus & Bus Facilities, and Section 5310 Enhanced Mobility for Seniors & Individuals with Disabilities grant funds.

The City of Knoxville is the designated recipient of the Section 5307 & 5339 funds.  Knoxville Knox County Planning is the designated recipient of the Section 5310 funds.  The times established for public review and for allowing public comment on the POP follow the TPO’s Transportation Improvement Plan public involvement process.  If there are no changes, the POP will be considered final. 

Proposed Program of Projects

Interested persons, agencies, and private transportation providers are encouraged to participate.  To be mailed or faxed a copy of the POP or to provide comments contact Doug Burton at 400 Main Street, Suite 403, Knoxville, TN 37902 or at (865) 215-3824 or at  Comments must be submitted by 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 25, 2023 to be read during the meeting.   

Deadline for Advance Knox Survey Extended to April 23

There is still time to participate in the final round of outreach for Advance Knox!

Knox County’s current Comprehensive Plan hasn’t been updated in almost 20 years. During that time, the county has experienced significant growth and change. Advance Knox is a unique opportunity to align land use and transportation goals to create a blueprint for the county’s future. It will help guide decisions about where and how growth occurs and where investments in infrastructure and services need to be made in the years to come.  

Based on previous public input and data analysis, the project team has developed a list of proposed transportation projects that was presented at a series of public events. Input from these workshops and an online survey will help the team prioritize the public investment needed to guide the county’s future.  

There were five in-person and two virtual events held between March 27 and April 6.

Monday, Mar. 27

  • Cansler YMCA, 12 p.m.
  • Gibbs Middle School, 5:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Mar. 28

  • Brickey McCloud Elementary School, 5:30 p.m.

Wednesday, Mar. 29

  • Virtual event, 12 p.m.
  • Northshore Elementary School, 5:30 p.m.

Thursday, Mar. 30

  • Bonny Kate Elementary School, 5:30 p.m.

Thursday, April 6

  • Virtual event, 12 p.m.

Opportunities to complete the online survey will be available through April 23.   

For more information about Advance Knox, please contact the project team at or visit  

TDOT Asks for Comments on Pellissippi Parkway Extension

The Tennessee Department of Transportation has put out a public notice that they’re seeking comments on the reevaluation of the environmental document for the Pellissippi Parkway Extension. TDOT has completed multiple Environmental Impact Statements (EIS’s) on the project, but their plans have changed, so they are seeking comments on the most recent EIS.

TDOT has also provided a library of previous documentation for the project.