Regional Planning

Our goal: Concentrate growth inside existing cities.

SPUR's regional planning agenda:


• Focus housing growth in existing communities.
• Add new jobs in transit-accessible employment centers.
• Retrofit suburban office parks to increase density.
• Strengthen our regional agencies.
• Explore tax sharing.


Read more from SPUR’s Agenda for Change
  • White Paper

    Improving Regional Planning in the Bay Area

    Many attempts have been made to foster better collaboration between the Association of Bay Area Governments and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission. A proposal to establish a merged planning department has again opened up the discussion about the future of regional planning in the Bay Area. SPUR recommends studying a full merger of the two agencies.

    Read More
  • Report

    Strengthening the Bay Area's Regional Governance

    The Bay Area economy has rebounded from the recession, but major regional challenges threaten our continued prosperity. SPUR makes the case that some of the biggest threats to the Bay Area’s long-term economic competitiveness are best addressed through better regional governance.

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  • Advocacy Letter

    SPUR’s Comments on Plan Bay Area

    Plan Bay Area is an important step forward in comprehensive regional planning in the Bay Area. Our comments on the plan address the gap between our vision of a more concentrated region and the tools available to achieve it.

    Read More
  • Ongoing Initiative

    The Future of Work

    In the last three decades, employment has spread from city centers to car-centric, low-density office parks. How can we move more jobs to places served by transit? SPUR looks at how to make this shift while strengthening innovation, job growth and the prosperity of the Bay Area.

    Read More
  • The Urbanist

    The Northern California Megaregion

    Northern California, home to 14 million people, is expected to add at least 10 million people by 2050. How we plan for and accommodate that growth is the defining question for urban planning in Northern California today.

    Read More
  • SPUR Report

    Beyond the Tracks

    California cities anticipating the rewards of new high-speed rail stations may fail to reap the full economic and environmental benefits without key land-use planning. SPUR identifies strategies that will contribute to the success of high-speed rail and help realize the full potential of this multi-billion-dollar system.

    Read More
  • Find more of SPUR's regional planning research

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Updates and Events

SPUR Supports MTC Evolving Its Role in Investments, Land Uses and Project Delivery

Policy Letter October 12, 2019
There are conversations happening throughout the region about how to improve project delivery and it is important for MTC to identify shared solutions. With over $300 billion transportation project needs, there is potential to have many tens of billions of dollars of cost overruns. If we reduce costs by 10%, that puts $30 billion back into our communities.

SPUR Comments on the Forecast Methodology for Plan Bay Area 2050

Policy Letter August 19, 2019
ABAG and MTC have worked to improve regional long-range forecasting and modeling in the Bay Area. SPUR recognizes MTC and ABAG’s thought leadership and offers additional research and process considerations as they finalize the forecast methodology for Plan Bay Area 2050.

SPUR Support for San Jose's Recent Decisions Regarding Coyote Valley

Policy Letter August 1, 2019
SPUR supports two decisions the San Jose City Council recently made in regard to Coyote Valley: 1. The decision to revisit the long-term vision for Coyote Valley as part of the General Plan 4-Year Review and 2. the council’s continued support for allocating up to $50 million dollars of Measure T funding for Coyote Valley, as was envisioned in the campaign for the ballot measure.

Giving Old Infrastructure New Life

Urbanist Article July 29, 2019
A fast, frequent megaregional rail network could be transformative for the Bay Area and Northern California. As part of the SPUR Regional Strategy, we are working to identify some of the major changes needed to implement this vision.

SPUR Recommends Prioritization of User Experience at Diridon Station

Policy Letter June 21, 2019
SPUR recommend that local boards and partner agencies at Diridon Station use the lens of user experience to evaluate the proposed elements and scenarios for the spatial configuration of this multimodal hub. User experience is critical to whether people will embrace the station — be it to take a transit trip, meet with friends in the station area, or live or work in San Jose.

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