Growth Allocation by the Delphi Process

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A.F. Gamble, D.F. Pearson, G.B. Dresser

Publication Date:

February 1993


As part of a project funded by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) to examine methods of improving transportation planning techniques, the need to decrease the burden on the planning staff in smaller urban areas (populations less than 200,000) was addressed. In many cases, these smaller areas may not have the financial or personnel resources to determine growth using the traditional models or methods. An existing technique (the Delphi process) was modified to establish a procedure for allocating projected growth at the zone level. A qualitative measure of each zone's growth potential relative to the other zones in the area was established and used to allocate the projections of population and employment. The Delphi process can provide good results in a short time frame which provides the benefit of accelerating the overall planning process. The Delphi process is based on an iterative process. A panel of local experts and involved citizens participated in the process to reach a consensus.|A pilot project was conducted in the Longview, Texas, area in the summer of 1992 to examine the ability of the Delphi process to allocate future growth. The pilot project employed a three-tiered process in allocating the area's projected population and employment growth (for the year 2015) to 219 traffic analysis zones. Benefits of the Delphi process include reduced costs to the MPO in both time and money; social, political, and legal advantages of basing the allocations on a panel consensus; and the advantages of involving members of local agencies and committees during the allocation process. Support software and a user's manual are currently under development for TxDOT.

Report Number:



Growth Allocation, Delphi Process, Transportation Planning

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