This section provides an overview of VTrans, including transportation policy and planning issues and demographic characteristics of the state of Vermont to provide context for the peer review discussion.
The Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) was created in 1979 as the Vermont State Legislature combined four different but related agencies: Highway, Motor Vehicles, Aeronautics, and Public Transit. VTrans provides planning and financial support for the integrated transportation network throughout the state, including highway, rail, public transit, airports, and bicycle/pedestrian modes. The agency's mission is to provide for the safe and efficient movement of people and goods. Although a majority of VTrans's resources are directed toward maintaining and improving the state's network of roads and bridges, the Agency's vision is a safe, efficient and multimodal transportation system that promotes Vermonters' quality of life and economic wellbeing.
Vermont contains fourteen counties and has a population over 626,000, according to the 2012 US Census estimate. The Chittenden County Regional Planning Commission is the only Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) in the state. Regional transportation planning in the rest of the state is conducted by the ten other regional planning commissions with cooperation and funding support from VTrans.
Vermont contains twenty distinct Census urban areas, but Vermont's fourteen counties are predominantly rural with the exception of Chittenden County, which accounts for approximately 24% of households, 30% of employment, 39% of internal TAZs, and the largest urban area in the state, Burlington.
After experiencing mild growth in the 1980s and 1990s, the state has experienced minimal growth over the past decade. Between 2000 and 2010, the US Census Bureau reports a population growth of 2.7 percent. Population growth over each decade is provided in Table 1.
Table 1: Vermont State Population Growth: 1980 - 2012
|Year||Population||Growth from Previous Year Listed|
According to the 2007-2011 American Community Survey (ACS) Five-Year Estimates Vermont has a civilian labor force of 351,086 with a median state household income of $53,422. Table 2 summarizes the commute-to-work mode distribution, as reported by the ACS.
Table 2: Commute-to-Work Mode Distribution for the State of Vermont
|Car, Truck, or Van - Drive Alone||74.1%|
|Car, Truck, or Van - Carpool||10.3%|
|Public Transportation (Excluding Taxi)||1.1%|
|Work at Home||6.9%|
VTrans operates ten local airports which do not comprise a significant number of national enplanements. The agency does not manage Burlington International Airport, which accounts for the greatest number of enplanements in the state at 636,019 for the 2011 fiscal year.
 Federal Aviation Administration Calendar Year 2011 Enplanement Data. http://www.faa.gov/airports/planning_capacity/passenger_allcargo_stats/passenger/media/cy11_cargo.pdf