VISION 2050 recommends a long-range vision for land use and transportation in the seven-county Southeastern Wisconsin Region. It makes recommendations to local and State government to shape and guide land use development and transportation improvement, including public transit, arterial streets and highways, freight, and bicycle and pedestrian facilities, to the year 2050. We have reached a pivotal moment in our Region’s development, and more than ever we will need to compete with other areas to attract residents and businesses. To increase our competitiveness, VISION 2050 builds on our strengths as a Region and seeks to improve areas where we do not compete well with our peers.
A summary of VISION 2050 can be found here. The full three-volume plan report, including links to each individual chapter of the report, can be accessed below. A separate VISION 2050 website has also been created, which shares key recommendations from the plan and includes interactive mapping of several main plan elements.
2020 Review and Update Adopted
On June 17, 2020, the Commission adopted the 2020 Review and Update to VISION 2050, following approval on April 29, 2020, by the Advisory Committees guiding the effort. The report documenting the 2020 Update, along with a Second Edition of VISION 2050, will be published this summer. The 2020 Update represents the first interim review and update of VISION 2050, which was originally completed and adopted in July 2016. The 2020 Update assessed the progress in implementing the original VISION 2050 recommendations, the performance of the transportation system, year 2050 forecasts underlying the plan, and changes in recent years that impact the plan. Following review of this information and two rounds of public input, the Commission identified updates to the plan recommendations, which are described in the 2020 Update report. The report also includes an updated financial analysis for the recommended transportation system and updated equity analyses related to the updated plan. An outline of the 2020 Update report along with draft chapters prepared to date can be reviewed on the right side of this page. Information can also be found on the VISION 2050 website.
Public Involvement Round 1 (November/December 2019)
Staff conducted the first of two rounds of public involvement for the Review and Update in late 2019. This effort included holding seven public meetings across the Region and obtaining input from the Commission’s nine community partners. The purpose of this first round of public involvement was to share information with the public about how well the various plan elements are being implemented, and collect feedback about this progress. We also asked for comments on changes, since VISION 2050 was adopted, that we should consider as we update the plan’s recommendations. Comments for the first round were accepted through December 20, 2019, and were considered by staff as we prepared a draft 2020 Review and Update and by the Advisory Committees guiding the Review and Update.
Public Involvement Round 2 (February/April 2020)
Staff conducted the second round of public involvement for the Review and Update in early 2020. This round involved providing an opportunity to learn about and provide feedback on proposed plan changes. We also shared information about a funding gap for the recommended transportation system and discussed how the plan would help improve equity across the Region. This round was interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic and resulted in staff cancelling three of seven planned public open house meetings across the Region. In lieu of the canceled in-person meetings, we extended the comment period and provided alternative ways for residents to learn about the draft plan update and to provide feedback, including two virtual meetings, a YouTube video presentation, and an online questionnaire. Comments for the second round were accepted through April 8, 2020, and we have reviewed, summarized, and responded to the comments we received. We then provided them to the Advisory Committees guiding the Review and Update.
New Report Comparing the Milwaukee Metro Area to Its Peers
Commission staff recently prepared a second edition of a report comparing the four-county Milwaukee metro area to 28 peer metro areas in the Midwest and across the country. The comparison includes a number of key measures related to population growth and characteristics, the economy, and transportation. Among the conclusions, the report finds that the Milwaukee metro area is growing slower than most of its peers, its disparities between whites and minorities are far more pronounced than those in almost all peer metro areas, and its transit levels are in danger of shrinking to the much lower levels of those peers without dedicated transit funding. The updated report is available here.
Adopted Amendment Related to Foxconn
VISION 2050 was adopted prior to any knowledge of the Foxconn development that is being constructed in the Village of Mount Pleasant. Given the size and significance of this development, it was necessary to amend VISION 2050 to incorporate land use changes to accommodate additional residents and jobs directly or indirectly related to the Foxconn manufacturing campus. In addition to land use changes, the plan amendment incorporates transportation improvements to serve the Foxconn manufacturing campus area. As part of the plan amendment, based on intervening changes in State funding for transportation projects, staff also revisited the analysis of existing and reasonably expected costs and revenues associated with the transportation system recommended in VISION 2050. In addition, staff prepared updated equity analyses of the plan’s land use and transportation components as amended. The report documenting the adopted amendment can be found here and a summary of the amendment can be found here.
Meeting State and Federal Requirements
As the official areawide regional planning agency and the official metropolitan transportation planning organization for Southeastern Wisconsin under State and Federal laws and regulations, the Regional Planning Commission has the responsibility of developing and maintaining land use and transportation plans for the Region. VISION 2050, adopted by the Commission on July 28, 2016, is the sixth-generation regional land use and transportation system plan for Southeastern Wisconsin, updating the previous year 2035 land use and transportation plans.
A Visioning and Scenario Planning Approach
The plan and its vision were developed through extensive public involvement, with valuable input and guidance provided by Commissioners, Advisory Committees, Task Forces, and the concerned citizens of the Region. The process used to develop the plan was intended to engage the public and elected officials in the planning process and expand public knowledge on the implications of existing and future land use and transportation development in Southeastern Wisconsin. You can learn more about the visioning conducted for the plan on the VISION 2050 website.
SEWRPC’s Advisory Committees on Land Use Planning and Transportation Planning helped guide the original visioning and planning process and the adopted plan amendments. The Advisory Committees include members from all seven counties in the Region and several municipalities, including the public transit providers. The Committees also include members from the following State and Federal agencies: Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Wisconsin Department of Transportation; U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Transit and Federal Highway Administrations; and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Fiscally Constrained Transportation Plan
As part of VISION 2050, staff compared the estimated costs and reasonably expected revenues for the recommended transportation system. In doing so, staff identified a funding gap for the public transit element, resulting in the need to identify a “fiscally constrained” version of the recommended transportation system. This Fiscally Constrained Transportation Plan (FCTP) includes a reduction in transit service in the Region (other than committed projects) rather than the significant improvement recommended under VISION 2050. It then identifies possible ways to address the transit funding gap so that VISION 2050 can be fully implemented. The adopted plan amendment related to Foxconn includes an updated financial analysis that includes consideration of the plan amendment related to Foxconn and recent changes in State transportation funding for the Region. That update shows that, in addition to insufficient funding for transit, expected revenues will also be insufficient to complete the recommended reconstruction of several portions of the arterial street and highway system.
Volume I: Groundwork for Vision and Plan Development
Full PDF (443 pages, 103 MB) Full PDF Reduced (443 pages, 15 MB)
Chapter 2—Existing Conditions and Trends: Population, Employment, and Land Use
Chapter 3—Review of the Year 2035 Regional Land Use and Transportation System Plans
Chapter 4—Inventory of Transportation Facilities and Services
Chapter 5—Travel Habits and Patterns
Chapter 6—Future Population, Households, and Employment in the Region
Appendix A—A Comparison of the Milwaukee Metropolitan Area to Its Peers
Appendix B—Adopted County and Local Comprehensive Plans in Southeastern Wisconsin
Appendix C—Accuracy Checks of the Year 2011 Travel Surveys
Volume II: Developing the Vision and Plan
Part I – Visioning and Scenarios Full PDF (279 pages, 22 MB) Full PDF Reduced (279 pages, 13 MB)
Chapter 1—Visioning for the Region’s Future
Chapter 2—Conceptual Land Use and Transportation Scenarios
Appendix D—Results of Initial Visioning Activities
Appendix E—Public Feedback on Conceptual Scenarios
Part II – Alternative Plans Full PDF (435 pages, 133 MB) Full PDF Reduced (435 pages, 20 MB)
Chapter 3—Alternative Land Use and Transportation Plans
Appendix F—Complete Alternative Plan Evaluation Results
Appendix G—Public Feedback on Detailed Alternatives
Part III – Preliminary Recommended Plan Full PDF (407 pages, 86 MB) Full PDF Reduced (407 pages, 16 MB)
Chapter 4—Preliminary Recommended Year 2050 Regional Land Use and Transportation Plan
Appendix H—Complete Results of the Preliminary Recommended Plan Evaluation
Appendix I—Evaluation of Potential Benefits and Impacts of Reconstructing with Widening or Not Widening IH 43 between Howard Avenue and Silver Spring Drive
Appendix J—Public Feedback on Preliminary Recommended Plan
Volume III: Recommended Regional Land Use and Transportation Plan
Full PDF (343 pages, 65 MB) Full PDF Reduced (343 pages, 13 MB)
Chapter 1—Recommended Year 2050 Regional Land Use and Transportation Plan
Chapter 2—Fiscally Constrained Transportation Plan
Chapter 3—Plan Implementation
Appendix K—VISION 2050 Land Use Design Guidelines
Appendix L—Equity Analysis of the VISION 2050 Land Use Component
Appendix M—VISION 2050 Plan Recommendations for the Jefferson County Portion of the Milwaukee Urbanized Area
Appendix N—Equitable Access Analysis of the Fiscally Constrained Transportation Plan
Appendix O—Population in the Region by Sewer Service Area
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Related Reports to be Referenced in SEWRPC Planning Report 55:
The Economy of Southeastern Wisconsin (Technical Report 10, 5th Edition)
The Population of Southeastern Wisconsin (Technical Report 11, 5th Edition)
Guiding the Vision (June 2014)
A Comparison of the Milwaukee Metropolitan Area to Its Peers (Memorandum Report 221, 1st Edition)
A Comparison of the Milwaukee Metropolitan Area to Its Peers (Memorandum Report 221, 2nd Edition)
Travel Simulation Models of Southeastern Wisconsin (Technical Report 51)
Assessment of Conformity (Memorandum Report 223)
Comments Received on the Preliminary Recommended Plan