Focus Areas

Rural and Small Community Planning


The Rural and Small Community Planning focus area page is a one-stop shop for resources about transportation planning in rural and small communities on the TPCB website. It includes links to publications, legislation and guidance, recent peer events, upcoming calendar events, and related websites.

Resources and Publications


  • NEW  Regional Transportation Planning Organization Fact Sheets. A Regional Transportation Planning Organization (RTPO) is an organization that identifies local transportation needs, conducts planning, assists local governments, and supports the statewide transportation planning process in non-metropolitan regions of a State. States are provided the opportunity to designate RTPOs as a method for formalizing the engagement of local officials as they incorporate rural transportation needs in the statewide transportation planning process. View each of the noteworthy practices fact sheets below to learn more about RTPOs.
  • Mainstreaming Gender Data Collection
    The May-June 2019 TR News includes a featured story that outlines the need for gender-sensitive transportation data collection. Transportation policies that affect both men and women require multiple data collection methods to ensure appropriate statistical analysis; however, research shows that sociodemographics are not sufficiently studied. Collecting more comprehensive and useful data on women’s travel patterns and caregiving trip activities can lead to more effective and inclusive policy.
  • Community Connections Innovations Handbook
    This publication is for States, MPOs, local and tribal governments, and other transportation practitioners includes a toolbox for advancing Community Connections considerations in the transportation planning, project development, and design processes. The toolbox describes existing analytical tools, public involvement strategies, planning and design techniques, and operational improvements that can be used to implement Community Connections. The Handbook includes 16 case studies highlighting projects in urban, suburban, and rural communities where Community Connections considerations have been successfully applied.
  • Success in Stewardship: Case Studies Highlighting Benefits of Multimodal Roadway Design and Green Infrastructure
    The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) recently published a set of case studies as part of its efforts to document and promote connected pedestrian and bicycle networks in communities throughout the United States. The case studies are designed to provide information for agencies interested in improvements to their pedestrian and bicycle networks that incorporate green infrastructure and resiliency benefits. The information provided on stormwater and mobility benefits will help communities better understand the variety of goals and outcomes they can achieve through their projects.
  • View the Briefing Book Non-Metropolitan Local Officials Consultation - The webpage describes the role of non-metropolitan local officials in the statewide transportation planning process.
  • The Transportation Planning Process: Key Issues (the "Briefing Book") - The "Briefing Book" is a primer to help you better understand Federal transportation planning regulations and requirements at the statewide and metropolitan planning levels.

Click here to access a full list of Legislation, Regulations, and Guidance related to rural and small community planning on the TPCB website.

Calendar of Events

Check the calendar

Peer Event Reports

The TPCB peer program is a free resource for agencies in need of transportation planning assistance. Visit the peer program page to learn more or apply for a peer event.

Related Websites and Organizations


For more information about the TPCB program, please email TPCB@dot.gov.

FHWA Home   |  FTA Home   |  Privacy Statement   |  Website Feedback
US DOT Logo  United States Department of Transportation