The Need for Regional Anti-Congestion Policies

Anthony Downs
Anthony Downs Former Brookings Expert

February 1, 2004

Traffic congestion is essentially a regional phenomenon requiring regional approaches to mitigate its impacts. This brief examines the governance options necessary to act regionally and the conditions required to implement such policies. Currently, the reauthorization of the federal transportation spending bill (TEA-21) presents a unique opportunity to build on previous reforms and increase the decision-making power of regional metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs).