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This paper presents an analytical framework for balancing the reverse and forward links capacities by searching for the optimal soft handoff probability. A cross-layer framework involving the link layer and the network layer is designed to determine the optimal soft handoff probability. Using the network layer parameter, call blocking probability, as the metric of system performance, the system is optimized by subjecting to the SIR requirement at the link layer. The admission region is calculated by maintaining the outage requirements for both the reverse and forward links, and the optimal soft handoff probability is obtained by looking for the lowest penalty of call blocking and found that the optimal soft handoff probability used in the voice-oriented cellular system is required to be kept at 0.35∼0.45. Furthermore, the optimal soft handoff probability should be reduced with the increase of the transmission traffic load from video/data service and other unbalanced services on the forward link.