Travel demand on the region’s transportation network is driven by increases in population, jobs and households.
Dramatic growth in population, jobs and households has been the standard for the past 35 years in the Metropolitan Washington region. And according to projections from the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG), these trends are expected to continue.
Since 1970 the region has added over two million people for a total that today exceeds five million. By 2040 our population will grow by another 1.5 million to 6.8 million. Most of this increase has and will continue to occur outside the central jurisdictions where much of the transportation infrastructure planned decades ago remains unbuilt. In fact, by 2040 twice as many people will live in the outer jurisdictions (Frederick, Loudoun, Prince William, Stafford, etc.) than the central jurisdictions (District of Columbia, Arlington, Alexandria). In 2040 the number of households in outer jurisdictions will be 50% greater than the region’s core.
Constructing the missing regional parkways, bypasses and Potomac River bridge links planned decades ago is critical to providing the framework for intelligent land use and a balanced transportation network.