On October 1, 2020, the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for Saginaw County was re-designated and a new name was established for the MPO which is now called the Saginaw Area Transportation Agency (SATA) formally known as the Saginaw Metropolitan Area Transportation Study (SMATS).  The units of government forming the Intermunicipality Committee all adopted resolutions to form the entity and a final stamp of approval from the Governor of State of Michigan effective the first day of October 2020.  SATA is now formally recognized as a Intermunicipality Committee under the Michigan Public Act 200 of 1957 and is the newly re-structured designated (MPO) responsible for transportation policy, planning, and investment decision-making in the Saginaw urbanized area. 

Our name and committee structure has changed, however, our organization’s vision, core values, and responsibilities have not.  The restructuring of SATA has sharpened the agency’s vision, goals, and objectives to better serve Saginaw County citizens by streamlining the approval of time-sensitive road, and transit projects, and enhanced the utilization of federal, state, and local transportation dollars in the Saginaw Countyarea. 

The MPO was originally established in 1967 and governed by the Saginaw County Planning Commission located in the Saginaw County Courthouse.  Prior to redesignation the Saginaw MPO was the oldest existing MPO under its original organizational structure and now the newest redesignated MPO in the State of Michigan.

Over the years the MPO has grown to include more than 31 members (see membership) representing cities, towns, counties, and other transportation agencies throughout Saginaw County.  SATA is a multi-jurisdictional agency responsible for transportation and transit planning agency that is mandated by Federal law to provide a continuing, cooperative, and comprehensive (3c) transportation planning process, which guides the expenditure of federal, state, and local transportation funds in Saginaw County.  SATA also annually establishes project priorities for consideration by the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) and the Saginaw Transit Authority Regional Services (STARS) when programming transportation funds. In addition, SATA continually monitors the current condition of the county’s transportation system, including roads, bicycle, and pedestrian paths, bridges, and public transit.