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Associate Transportation Planner

Washtenaw Area Transportation Study
Ann Arbor, MI
United States
42,000-55,000 Commensurate with experience

The Washtenaw Area Transportation Study (“WATS”) is a multi-jurisdictional agency responsible for transportation planning in Washtenaw County. The agency is mandated by federal law to provide a continuing, cooperative and comprehensive transportation planning process, which guides the expenditure of state and federal transportation funds in Washtenaw County. WATS works collaboratively to establish project priorities for various transportation funds. In addition, WATS continually monitors the current condition of the county's transportation system, including roads, bicycle and pedestrian paths, bridges, and public transit. 

A transportation planning position is available with WATS.  Under the supervision of the Director, the position will assist in a variety of transportation planning tasks, engage the public, and work cooperatively with officials at all governmental levels.

Typical job functions: 
The below statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work performed and is not an exhaustive list of job responsibilities.

  • Gather, compile, and analyze information for the development of plans and preparation of reports and prepare graphic displays and maps;
  • Use the agency’s Travel Demand Model and its outputs in TransCAD and analyze, contextualize, and visualize the results.
  • Participate in the development of federally required planning and programming documents such as the Metropolitan Transportation Plan and Transportation Improvement Program; 
  • Create informational brochures, prepare minutes of meetings and general purpose transportation related reports;
  • Attend and, when necessary, speak at a variety of transportation and planning related meetings; attend conferences, workshops, trainings and seminars as necessary;
  • Prepare memoranda for committee meeting packets; prepare newsletter mailings; maintain and update agency data sets; participate in agency media outreach; and other miscellaneous office work; and
  • Assist the general public, elected officials and other governmental agencies with transportation-related questions and problems; gather data, map conditions and conduct fieldwork.
  • Effectively synthesize complex information and data into understandable graphics and documents
  • Interact regularly with the technical and policy committees and various subcommittees. Provides project updates, presents on certain aspects of the transportation program and provides other information, as requested.
  • Performs related duties, as required.

Required Knowledge and Minimum Employment Qualifications:

The knowledge and qualifications listed represent the necessary skills to function in the transportation planner position.  Reasonable accommodations may be made available to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of this job.

  • Bachelor’s degree in urban and regional planning, geography, or related field required;
  • Three years of experience in transportation planning or related field preferred;
  • A current State of Michigan Vehicle Operator’s License preferred (may be obtained after hire);
  • Understanding of the principles and practices of urban, regional and transportation planning preferred;
  • Working knowledge of typical office software, including word processing, spreadsheets and databases required
  • Working knowledge of TransCAD and ESRI Arc GIS and online mapping platforms such as Carto preferred 
  • Familiarity with commonly used census data tools such as CTTP, LEHD, etc. preferred
  • Familiarity with federal transportation legislation preferred;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills required;
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently and collaboratively in a small office environment required;
  • Ability to establish working relationships and use good judgment when dealing with the public, other employees, and government elected officials required;
  • Ability to attend meetings as scheduled at times other than regular business hours required; and
  • Familiarity with Washtenaw County and Southeast Michigan is desirable.

Physical Demands and Work Environment: 
While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to communicate with others in person and on the telephone. The employee must compose and read written and digital documents, plans and maps. The employee is frequently required to travel to locations within and outside of the County. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move lightweight items. The employee will also conduct infrequent fieldwork such as collecting pavement condition, road characteristics, and non-motorized traffic counts.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee regularly works in a business office setting. The employee is occasionally exposed to outside weather conditions during travel and fieldwork.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of this job.

WATS provides a complete benefits package to all full-time employees including health insurance, generous time off, an SEP IRA retirement plan, Health Savings Account, parental leave, and more.  

WATS is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, color, sex, sexual orientation, or national origin.  

To apply, submit a resume, cover letter, and references to  Additionally, candidates are invited to submit a representative sample of individual work (not group work), including writing sample(s), maps, or any other materials supporting your application.  If individual writing samples are not available please provide a less than one-page response to the question: “Describe an important issue planners currently face”. Application materials must be received no later than 12:00 p.m. (ET) on Friday, August 9, 2019.  For more information visit our website

Published on:
July 23, 2019 - 8:51am
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