Planning for a thriving region

The Council plans and makes strategic, efficient public investments to support our region’s economic vitality and strong quality of life.  We work to maximize future opportunities for growth and prosperity, and achieve goals that are too big for any one community but possible to accomplish as a region.

The Council’s role

We plan the innovative, efficient systems – like transit and wastewater treatment – that strengthen the region’s economy. We partner with local communities to coordinate their plans with the regional systems, provide assistance in their planning efforts, and offer grants to support their development initiatives.

Major responsibilities

The Council plans for the efficient growth of the region, helps local communities plan for their future, operates major regional services, provides grants to enhance community vitality and livability, awards funds for maintaining and expanding our nationally renowned system of regional parks, and provides affordable-housing opportunities. 

Group of People

The Council develops the comprehensive development plan for the metro area - Thrive MSP 2040 - to shape the future growth of the region.

It also develops policy plans for regional systems — transportation, aviation, parks, and management of water resources,  coordinates plans for regional systems with local comprehensive land-use plans and offers communities assistance in implementing them.

People in front of bus

The Council operates Metro Transit, the largest transit system in the state, providing bus, light rail and commuter rail services, as well as Metro Mobility and Transit Link services.

The Council also operates the regional wastewater collection and treatment system that serves more than 100 communities and most of the households in the region.

Apt Building

The Council also plans and acquires land for the region's nationally renowned system of regional parks and trails, coordinates affordable housing opportunities for low-income residents, and supports communities in cleaning up polluted sites for redevelopment, expanding affordable housing, and carrying out their development plans through the Livable Communities program.


Council research staff compile and analyze data about the region's demographics, economy, development trends, and Census information.

The Council’s geographic information system (GIS) staff provide data and staff support for MetroGIS, a regional collaborative of local, regional and state governments that promotes sharing of geographic data.

See Our 2013 Accomplishmnets