Public Sector Applications
Metro Forecasting Models’ Interactive Growth Model™ has been used by Municipal Governments for over 40 years to accurately predict population growth and the Infrastructure necessary to support growing communities.
In addition to the model’s capacity to forecast when and where a population will grow for 80 years into the future or to build-out, it has also been utilized to forecast the need and timing for:
- Commercial Centers
- Commercial Corridors
- School Plants
- Fire/EMS Stations
- Park Development
- Law Enforcement
- Industrial Wholesale Uses
- Water & Sewer expansions
- Impact on Storm Water systems
- Data for Economic Development
The model is also used to update transportation models for MPO’s and long range city and county transportation plans, as well as updates to Comprehensive Plans.
The Model can be used as valuable input to update:
- Utility Master Plans
- Schools Facility Planner
- Parks & Recreation Master Plans
- Data for Transportation Models
- Land Use Master Plans
- Fiscal Implications of Decision Making
The Interactive Growth Model™ is used to forecast the aggregate and then the spatial distribution of population, in five-year increments to build-out along with the timing, apportionment, distribution and optimal locations of support land uses, both public and private, for that population. The study area is divided into several zones at the traffic analysis level.
The model truly an aggregate of many sub-models which include demographic, economic, socio-political, spatial relationships and land resources.
The model applies a series of algorithms to determine the optimal solution for the locations and timing of various land uses. Some of the parameters for the algorithms include the locations and timing of development, the proximity of existing development, propensity to aggregate land parcels and the transportation network.
Next to be determined is the apportionment of land uses (commercial, schools, industrial, etc…) by type and intensity to support current and future populations.
The model is dynamic and interactive. Any element, parameter or standard of its data can be changed to reflect changing times, priorities, policies, zoning or land use of the community.
Changes can be quickly processed by the model and outputs adjusted and reallocated. This feature provides the opportunity to demonstrate alternative “What If” scenarios valuable for community planning and budgetary purposes. This affords the communities using the model an idea of the potential magnitude of the costs associated with support public facilities and their timing for long and short term budgetary planning.
Data for the model can be used to create maps and graphics to aide policy makers in decision that will impact the future of their community. The forecast can help to provide a basis for zoning changes, extractions and project approvals
Accurate population forecasting is essential for proactive and effective community planning and to optimize the return on public investment in infrastructure and private investment for development.
Growing biological populations (including cities) increase at a rate over time that simulates a logistic or Sigmoid curve. Population growth increases at an accelerated rate over time until it reaches an inflection point, then the increase in population growth is at a decreasing rate until it reaches its upper growth limit.
Too often, inaccurate typical linear extrapolation projections are used to forecast population growth, leading to incorrect population forecasts upon which infrastructure is planned. When that happens, infrastructure which includes roadways, utilities, schools, recreational facilities and public services are prematurely advanced or allowed to fall behind population demand. The cost to “catch up” far exceeds the cost of being proactive to accurately meet the demands as they occur.
Investing public capital to replace infrastructure before the term of its useful life (i.e. 20 years) due to over-utilization, can result in negative returns on public investment.
Likewise, over-estimating population could result in large-scale capital investment expenditures that are under- utilized with few beneficial returns.
Metro Forecasting Models solution is proven to be more than 98% accurate and is the only method available that empowers community planners of all disciplines to precisely determine future needs in their community.