The Lake-Sumter Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) was established on Feb. 25, 2004, after the 2000 U.S. Census determined the urbanized areas around Leesburg, Eustis and Lady Lake had exceeded a population of 50,000.
The designation couldn’t have come quick enough for the booming area. Transportation planning is at a critical time in the Lake and Sumter region. Due to growth, it is predicted that vehicle miles traveled daily on the Lake-Sumter road network will almost double during the next 20 years.
The Lake-Sumter MPO seeks to improve transportation in both counties for all modes of travel, including mass transit, walking, bicycling, rail, air, as well as the automobile. The MPO prioritizes capital improvements to address the counties' travel needs and allocates federal funding to implement the projects as identified in the LRTP and the TIP.
Planning wisely can keep the transportation system working efficiently. Tasked with effectively identifying the public’s transportation needs is the Lake-Sumter MPO Board. The Board consists of elected officials representing all of the local governments in the region, including municipal and county entities.
Mission & Vision
The mission of the Lake~Sumter Metropolitan Planning Organization is to provide the local governments, agencies and residents of Lake and Sumter counties a forum for addressing growth and transportation issues, with an emphasis on: (1) planning a regional, multi-modal transportation network that balances accessibility and mobility; (2) incorporating the visions of the member governments into a cohesive regional approach; and (3) coordinating with regional partners and state and federal agencies to meet the needs of the public.
A Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) is an agency created by federal law to provide local input for urban transportation planning and allocation of federal transportation funds.
In 1974, the U.S. Congress amended the Federal Aid Highway Act, which mandated that all urbanized areas having a population of 50,000 or more designate a single agency to administer federal transportation funds. The agencies that were established were called Metropolitan Planning Organizations. These organizations were to provide a transportation planning process for local, state and federal officials. Today, there are more than 300 MPOs across the country, including the Lake-Sumter MPO.
Within a region, transportation planning is important to everyone. How well a citizen can travel to work, school, the shopping mall or the hospital affects their safety and quality of life. The mission of a MPO is to provide comprehensive, coordinated and continuous transportation planning for the safe and efficient movement of people and goods consistent with the region's overall economic, social and environmental goals.
These planning organizations place special emphasis on providing equal access to a variety of transportation choices and promoting effective public involvement in the planning process. The Lake-Sumter MPO works together with its transportation partners, including the public, to enhance the intermodal mobility of the community by developing a comprehensive long-range transportation plan that supports the mobility needs and economic development of the community.