Introduction and Background FY 2020- FY 2023

Introduction

Titles 23 and 49 of the United States Code require that every Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) produce a multi-year Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) that includes all projects which seek federal funding and other regionally significant transportation projects in the MPO’s metropolitan planning area. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and Federal Transit Administration (FTA) will only approve projects and grants for projects that are programmed into the current approved TIP. The TIP is considered a short range plan that compliments and supports the MPO’s long range transportation plan (LRTP) which is updated every five years and has a 25-year planning horizon.

The TIP is a product of the on-going transportation planning process for the Champaign-Urbana Urbanized Area Transportation Study (CUUATS), which is the MPO for the Champaign Urbana Urbanized Area. It was prepared by CUUATS staff, under the direction of the CUUATS Technical Committee, for the CUUATS Policy Committee. Approval by the CUUATS Policy Committee certifies that the requirements of 23 CFR, Section 450.308 are met. The Champaign-Urbana area TIP is utilized to develop the State’s TIP (STIP). Highway and transit projects eligible for grouping are summarized by year, fund source, and type of work. The STIP is submitted for FHWA and FTA approval with appropriate documentation of public involvement.

TIP Annual Element

The TIP Annual Element is the project database that documents local and regional transportation projects occurring in the CUUATS metropolitan planning area by fiscal year. The Annual Element is updated on an ongoing basis with all changes presented and documented at regular meetings of the CUUATS Technical and Policy Committee meetings. The procedures for making changes are described in greater detail below.

The TIP is developed to meet federal regulations (23 CFR 450.324). In general, the TIP includes capital and non-capital surface transportation projects within the boundaries of the MPA to be funded with federal funds, as well as all regionally-significant projects requiring an action by FHWA or FTA regardless of the source of funding. As specified in those guidelines, those projects include transportation enhancements, Federal Lands Highway program projects, safety projects included in the State’s Strategic Highway Safety Plan, trails projects, pedestrian walkways, and bicycle facilities.

The Annual Element is based on existing area-wide transportation plans, previous TIPs, Transportation System Management studies, and the current construction plans of the implementing agencies. Implementing agencies include any entity carrying out transportation projects in the MPA including, but not limited to, the seven CUUATS member agencies: State of Illinois, Champaign County, City of Champaign, City of Urbana, Village of Savoy, University of Illinois, and Champaign Urbana Mass Transit District.

Local projects in the Annual Element are identified by the CUUATS TIP numbering system. This system lists the lead agency, the first fiscal year the project is anticipated to be financially active, and a second number to distinguish different projects that are lead by the same agency in the same fiscal year (XX-YR-##). For the sake of consistency, these project numbers will not change, even if the project moves to a different fiscal year at some point in the future. The state has their own system for numbering state-led projects.

The Annual Element is financially constrained, meaning that all funding estimates are based on anticipated state, federal, and local budget constraints. The costs shown in this document are estimates of expected costs based on current information available about the projects. TIP projects are subject to the financial availability of federal, state, and/or local agencies’ funding sources. Costs shown for some projects are rough estimates, which will be refined after preliminary engineering work has been completed.

According to the Code of Federal Regulation, Title 23, Chapter 1, Subchapter E, Part 450, Subpart C, Metropolitan Transportation Planning and Programming, the following is a summary of the types of projects included in the TIP Annual Element:

  • The TIP shall include capital and non-capital surface transportation projects (or phases of projects) within the boundaries of the metropolitan planning area proposed for funding under 23 U.S.C. and 49 U.S.C. Chapter 53 (including transportation alternatives; associated transit improvements; Tribal Transportation Program, Federal Lands Transportation Program, and Federal Lands Access Program projects; HSIP projects; trails projects; accessible pedestrian walkways; and bicycle facilities), except the following that may be included:
    • Safety projects funded under 23 U.S.C. 402 and 49 U.S.C. 31102;
    • Metropolitan planning projects funded under 23 U.S.C. 104(d), and 49 U.S.C. 5305(d);
    • State planning and research projects funded under 23 U.S.C. 505 and 49 U.S.C. 5305(e);
    • At the discretion of the State and MPO, metropolitan planning projects funded with Surface Transportation Program funds;
    • Emergency relief projects (except those involving substantial functional, locational, or capacity changes);
    • National planning and research projects funded under 49 U.S.C. 5314; and
    • Project management oversight projects funded under 49 U.S.C. 5327.
  • The TIP shall contain all regionally significant projects requiring an action by the FHWA or the FTA whether or not the projects are to be funded under title 23 U.S.C. Chapters 1 and 2 or title 49 U.S.C. Chapter 53 (e.g., addition of an interchange to the Interstate System with State, local, and/or private funds and congressionally designated projects not funded under 23 U.S.C. or 49 U.S.C. Chapter 53). For public information and conformity purposes, the TIP shall include all regionally significant projects proposed to be funded with Federal funds other than those administered by the FHWA or the FTA, as well as all regionally significant projects to be funded with non-Federal funds.

In addition, the CUUATS MPO has established the following additional guidelines for compiling and documenting projects in the TIP Annual Element:

  • The Illinois Department of Transportation will continue to provide CUUATS with the Department’s entire annual and multi-year highway program regardless of funding source and work type. The Illinois Department of Transportation will notify CUUATS of all projects proposed for State letting regardless of funding source and work type, including projects not shown in the TIP Annual Element.
  • In accordance with 23 CFR 450.220(c), the Metropolitan Planning section of the Federal Register, the participating members of the Champaign-Urbana Urbanized Area Transportation Study (CUUATS) agree that the State may propose federal-aid projects funded from the Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP). They also may propose projects funded with Interstate, NHS, STP-R, STP-U/STBGP, and BRRP monies, to be included in the statewide program of projects with these projects being drawn from the TIP Annual Element.

The CUUATS MPO utilizes the TIP to document all transportation investments in the MPA, including IDOT and local projects that are not regionally significant in nature and may or may not utilize federal funding, such as small resurfacing projects or minor railroad crossing improvements. These smaller projects are not necessarily individually identified in the TIP but rather grouped together in similar categories (e.g. 2019 Asphalt Overlay or 2020 Preserve and Seal Various Streets).

Project Categories

Highway

The following table summarizes the programmed highway Federal funding for fiscal years 2020-2023 as represented in the TIP Annual Element. The estimate of revenues for all projects is reasonable with respect to such funds anticipated to be available for the listed projects during the programmed TIP period. This table was updated after the release of the state’s multi-year program in November 2019.

Transit

The transit portion of the TIP is based on the Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District’s (C-U MTD) continuing efforts to provide modern, efficient, and effective transportation services and facilities. The District’s ongoing planning process evaluates and updates both short and long-range mobility needs, and then develops and implements effective solutions. The District has implemented and refined several development proposals to serve the community including a one-half fare cab program, a no-cost fixed route bus service for disabled persons and senior citizens, and 100% fixed route accessibility for wheelchairs.

Forecasts for Section 5307 Funds have been incorporated in the development of the TIP. These forecasts are based on previous funding levels received by C-U MTD. The forecasts are utilized as a good faith effort to keep the TIP fiscally constrained. Like all projects included in the TIP, all transit projects in the TIP are available for public review and comment as outlined in the CUUATS Public Participation Plan.

Bicycles & Pedestrians

The current LRTP includes several goals related to providing travel options for pedestrians and bicyclists. The intent is that all transportation system users in the urbanized area will have access to a network of transportation modes and “complete street“ infrastructure that:

  • Maximizes connectivity between origins and destinations and the modes used to travel between them;
  • Improves mobility during peak traffic hours;
  • Improves safety and convenience; and
  • Considers all users.

Bicycle and pedestrian projects do not have an annual funding allocation at this time. These projects tend to be either part of a larger roadway or construction project, and/or receive grant funding for their construction.

Air Quality Considerations

According to the IEPA’s 2017 Annual Air Quality Report, Champaign County continues to be an attainment area, which means that air quality is within acceptable parameters for common air pollutants.

Transportation officials in the Champaign-Urbana area recognize that the transportation sector is a leading source of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. Air quality is one of many determinants in selecting highway or transit projects for implementation, receiving consideration during project planning and implementation procedures.

Performance Measures and Performance-Based Planning

The Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) transportation bill, passed in 2012, established a national performance measurement system for the highway and transit programs. Based on this policy change, the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) established performance measures for four different areas:

  • Safety
  • Infrastructure (pavement and bridge condition)
  • System Performance
  • Transit Asset Conditions

The state departments of transportation (state DOTs) and metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) are required to establish targets for each highway performance measure while transit agencies and MPOs set targets for transit asset condition.

For most of the highway measures, MPOs can either choose to set quantitative targets for their metropolitan planning areas or commit to the state’s targets. For the highway measures, at the conclusion of each performance period, the USDOT assesses whether “significant progress” has been made toward achieving the highway targets, which is defined differently depending on the measure. If states do not make significant progress, they are required to submit documentation to FHWA on how they will reach the targets; in certain cases, states are also required to program more federal funds toward improving conditions. No penalties are assessed on MPOs or transit agencies.

As part of complying with the national performance measurement system established by MAP 21, the state DOTs, the MPOs, and the transit agencies have established a process for data sharing, target setting, and reporting. An Intergovernmental Agreement for Transportation Performance Management was created to comply with 23 CFR 450.314(h). This Agreement between IDOT, the MPO, and the local transit agency defines rights and obligations for each agency in terms of cooperatively developing and sharing information related to transportation performance management data and transit asset management data, performance target setting, reporting of performance targets, and tracking progress toward attainment of critical outcomes for the MPO region.

Pending further guidance from IDOT regarding how to document the connection between TIP projects and the performance measures, the following tables detail the targets associated with each of the performance measures as well as the local projects utilizing federal funding that address the targets. At this time, CUUATS staff are not able to speak to the evaluation methods of projects that are lead by state and/or federal agencies. The following tables include which federally-funded local TIP projects address each performance target, linking investment priorities to those performance targets as required in 23 CFR 450.326.

*MTD Maintenance Facility is counted as two facilities due to the 2016 expansion

 

Project Prioritization

This document sets priorities in two ways. First, the report differentiates between projects to be constructed or to receive funding in the first fiscal year of the Annual Element and those to be constructed during the following three fiscal years. The amount of time required for preliminary engineering and right-of-way acquisition, the availability of funds, and community needs will determine the fiscal year of the project. Preliminary activities on some projects take place over multiple fiscal years before construction is able to begin. Unforeseen difficulties in these activities could delay a project for a year or more requiring the fiscal year of the TIP project to change.

In accordance with federal regulations, the TIP is financially constrained. In the TIP, all projects in the first fiscal year have verified funding sources and the projects in the second, third, and fourth fiscal years have reasonably guaranteed funding sources. Project implementation priority is given to the first fiscal year of the TIP. However, special circumstances may arise necessitating movement of a second, third, or fourth year project forward to the first year. When this occurs, such a move will take place according to TIP update procedures. MPO Staff, at the next regularly scheduled committee meetings, will advise the Technical and Policy Committees of any project updates.

The second prioritization method involves how Surface Transportation Program-Urban STPU [recently renamed Surface Transportation Block Grant Program (STBGP) in the FAST Act, heretofore referred to as STPU/STBGP] funds are allocated within each of the four fiscal years in the TIP. The Champaign-Urbana Urbanized Area receives an allocation of funds each year through formulas determined by the FHWA, FTA, and the Illinois Department of Transportation, administered by the Illinois Department of Transportation. The Surface Transportation Program is one of the core Federal-aid Highway Program categories. The Champaign-Urbana Urbanized Area and the Mahomet Urban Area receive a population-based suballocation of STPU/STBGP funds from IDOT each year. Agreement among all jurisdictions through the use of the current Project Priority Review (PPR) guidelines and subsequent approval by the Technical and Policy Committees determines the best use of the STPU/STBGP funds allocated to the Champaign-Urbana Urbanized Area. The Village of Mahomet is in charge of determining the best use of the STPU/STBGP funds allocated to the Mahomet Urban Area.

The Project Priority Review (PPR) Guidelines are a federal requirement that outlines the process by which CUUATS evaluates and documents consistency between the local use of federal STPU/STBGP funding for the Champaign-Urbana Urbanized Area with federal transportation goals and the region’s Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP). Local agencies seeking to use STPU/STBGP funds for the Champaign-Urbana Urbanized Area are required to submit a project application to be reviewed by CUUATS staff and the Project Priority Review working group who use a set of criteria based on federal and regional transportation goals to score each project. The project scores are intended to illustrate the level of consistency with federal and regional transportation goals and also serve as a way to measure projects against one another in the event that multiple projects apply for STPU/STBGP funding in the same year.

National goals and performance measures serve as part of the foundation of the current LRTP, which was approved in December, 2019. The following national goals established by MAP-21 and the FAST Act  (23 USC 150 (b)), are included in the TIP with ongoing implementation of the LRTP:

  1. Safety
  2. Infrastructure Condition
  3. Congestion Reduction
  4. System Reliability
  5. Freight Movement and Economic Vitality
  6. Environmental Sustainability
  7. Reduced Project Delivery Delays

The use of STPU/STBGP funds are documented and recorded in the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). For FY 2020, the Illinois Department of Transportation has determined that the Champaign-Urbana Urbanized Area will receive $1,615,236.95 and the Village of Mahomet Urban Area will receive $101,651.92 (assuming full utility of the estimated apportionment), with the balance of the apportionment (determined by FHWA) being invested in the urbanized and urban areas by the IDOT District 5 office, in consultation and cooperation with the CUUATS Policy Committee and the Village of Mahomet.

Public Involvement Process

Since its inception in 1964, CUUATS has been actively committed to involving the public in its planning processes. Whenever a regular meeting, public hearing, or informational meeting is held, consideration is given to all comments or suggestions. In some instances, responses to resident input are prepared in writing and distributed to interested parties. For major transportation system developments, comments received by the public at a public hearing or by letter are responded to directly in the final report. Past examples of incorporating public comments into final reports include the Campus Area Transportation Study, the Greenways and Trails Plan, and the current LRTP. Information about CUUATS projects can be found on the Champaign County Regional Planning Commission (CCRPC) website.

CUUATS staff presently maintains an extensive mailing list, which includes active members of CUUATS committees and any other persons or agencies that have requested to be notified of meetings and events. The mailing list is informed about CUUATS public meetings via announcements that are sent out approximately (1) week before the scheduled event. Paid announcements for all CUUATS meetings are placed in the News-Gazette (the only daily circulation newspaper in Champaign-Urbana). Meeting announcements are also published on the CCRPC website.

The public is encouraged to participate at all CUUATS meetings. To facilitate public involvement in the development of a document or project, copies of all documents discussed at the CUUATS meetings are made available to the public on the CCRPC website prior to each meeting and are provided directly to individuals when requested. News releases are distributed periodically to announce the availability of a CUUATS report or to provide background on planning activities. Final copies of all CUUATS documents are made available to the public through the CCRPC website and CUUATS office.

In addition to the aforementioned formal public involvement processes, CUUATS also relies on informal techniques to get public input. CUUATS staff members often attend meetings of other governmental agencies where residents bring transportation-related issues and problems to the attention of their elected officials. Informal public participation also occurs when an interested resident contacts the CUUATS office to discuss an issue or when an agency requests transportation or planning data.

In developing the TIP, staff complied with the guidelines set forth in the CUUATS Public Participation Plan. Public notice of transportation planning activities and time established for public review of the TIP satisfy the public participation requirements for FTA grantees and MPOs as outlined in 49 U.S.C 5307 (b)(1) through (7); The Metropolitan Transportation Planning and Programming requirements at 23 CFR part 450.314, 316, 322, and 324; and FTA Circular 9030.1E, “Urbanized Area Formula Program: Program Guidance and Application Instructions,” Ch. V, Section 6.

TIP Administrative Modification & Amendment Procedures

The development and subsequent approval of the four-year TIP does not mark the end of the Metropolitan Planning Organization’s (MPO) (heretofore referred to as CUUATS) annual obligation. The TIP requires routine maintenance as the listed projects evolve throughout the fiscal year. The programming of transportation improvements within the urbanized area produces a tension between the need for a fast delivery of project contracts and the more time-consuming need for agency fiscal constraint and a transparent public input process. The purpose of this section is to outline the procedures CUUATS staff and member agencies use in revising the transportation projects documented in the CUUATS TIP as well as the other TIP content.

The procedures described in this document for amending the multi-year TIP have been agreed upon by CUUATS member agencies, and are consistent with federal transportation planning regulation and legislation. The procedures are meant to accommodate complex project changes and additions, as well as permit a simplified procedure for smaller administrative changes. These revisions must maintain year-to-year fiscal constraint for the four years of the TIP. All projects must also maintain conformity with the approved urbanized area Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP).

Federal Transportation Planning Regulations in Title 23 provide CUUATS with the discretion to create and approve alternative procedures to more effectively manage actions in the TIP that may occur during a given fiscal year. The regulations require the approval of any alternative procedures developed by CUUATS, and documentation of the procedures in the TIP document. The following section outlines the policies and procedures used by CUUATS when revising the TIP through the use of Administrative Modifications and Amendments, in accordance with federal regulations.

Administrative Modification

An Administrative Modification is a revision to the TIP that includes minor changes to project details and/or the movement of an included project among fiscal years. An Administrative Modification is a revision that does not require public input, re-demonstration of fiscal constraint, or a formal approval by the CUUATS Technical and Policy Committees. The following guidelines determine whether an Administrative Modification is possible for a submitted TIP revision:

  1. Adding, removing, or changing a TIP project or project phase that is funded exclusively with local money, (without any federal or state funding).
  2. Updating a TIP project or phase description/scope, as long as the update does not significantly change the project’s intended function, nature, or environmental impact.
  3. Increasing or decreasing federal, state, or local funding that does not significantly alter the funding proportions between the federal, state, and/or local levels and do not exceed the following cost change thresholds: 
  4. Changing federal or state project funding sources assuming the project meets the new funding source’s eligibility requirements.
  5. Placing a financial line in Advanced Construction status, with no changes to the federal funding amounts. Advanced Construction is a cash flow technique used by IDOT. Each federal fund source managed by FHWA in the TIP database can utilize Advanced Construction; FTA fund sources do not utilize Advance Construction. When a project is placed in Advanced Construction status, the FHWA has authorized the project to move forward with state appropriation (or other non-federal means) with the option to seek reimbursement of federal funds, if available, at a later point. IDOT notifies the MPO via email when a project phase(s) is converted to/from Advanced Construction status.
  6. Splitting or combining individually listed projects; as long as cost, schedule, and scope remain unchanged. The addition or deletion of project phases from a TIP Project as long as the funding amounts for the new line items stay within the cost change thresholds and the new line item does not result in a significant change to the original intent of the TIP Project. If an approved TIP Project is listed without a right-of-way phase (ROW), and an incidental ROW need is discovered during the design phase, a ROW purchase can be authorized under either the design or construction phase without amending the TIP. “Incidental” ROW is the purchase of a minor parcel(s) (including utility relocation) that does not involve the taking of any environmentally sensitive land or residential/commercial structure.
  7. Changing the year of a TIP project or phase.
  8. Changing the lead agency identified for a TIP project or phase.
  9. Adding, removing, or changing an illustrative project.
  10. Correcting data or typographical errors.

Any agency requesting an Administrative Modification to a TIP Project or project phase must submit a detailed description of the proposed changes to CUUATS staff including the current and updated project details included in the TIP Annual Element. Administrative Modifications will be published online separately from TIP Amendments and will be presented at the following CUUATS Technical and Policy meetings.

Amendment

A TIP Amendment refers to any major change to a project in the TIP including: the addition or deletion of a project, a major change in project cost, or a major change in design concept or project scope (e.g., changing project termini). The movement of a project from the Illustrative Table to a fiscal year in the TIP will require a TIP Amendment; however, changes to projects in the Illustrative Table will remain an Administrative Modification. A TIP Amendment requires a public meeting to re-demonstrate fiscal constraint and provide the public with the opportunity to provide input. The following changes will be considered grounds for a TIP Amendment:

  1. Adding or removing a project that includes any federal or state funding (regardless of cost).
  2. Adding or removing a project phase that is beyond the thresholds set for Administrative Modification.
  3. Increasing or decreasing federal, state, or local funding for a project or phase exceeding the cost change thresholds set for Administrative Modifications.
  4. Significantly changing the funding proportions between the federal, state, and/or local levels even if the total project cost change does not exceed the cost change thresholds set for Administrative Modifications.
  5. Significantly changing the project scope.
  6. Adding a ROW phase that includes the taking of environmentally sensitive lands or residential/commercial structures.

Any agency requesting a TIP Amendment must submit a detailed description of the proposed changes to CUUATS staff including the current and updated project details included in the TIP Annual Element. In addition, agencies must submit an IDOT Programming Sheet for each new project proposed to be amended to the TIP.

TIP Amendments are subject to the approval of the CUUATS Technical and Policy Committees. During these committee meetings, the public will have the opportunity to comment on the proposed Amendments. Once approved, the Amendments will be forwarded to IDOT in accordance with established procedures. As with Administrative Modifications, all TIP Amendments will be posted on the TIP website under a separate heading for Amendments.

Special Case TIP Alterations and Circumstances

Emergency Actions

In accordance with federal rules and regulations, in the event that the State of Illinois or the federal government declares a state of emergency, CUUATS may process any TIP Amendment or Administrative Modification that is related to mitigation of the emergency as an Administrative Modification. If applicable, the TIP changes would be processed in accordance with the TIP Amendment procedures during the next CUUATS Technical and Policy Committee meetings.

Time-Sensitive Actions

In the event that any member agency needs to amend or modify the TIP between regularly scheduled meetings to accommodate a grant deadline, bidding process, or other time-sensitive situation, CUUATS may process any TIP Amendment or Administrative Modification that is related to the deadline as an Administrative Modification. If applicable, the TIP changes would be processed in accordance with the TIP Amendment procedures during the next CUUATS Technical and Policy Committee meetings.

Dispute Resolution

If a question arises on the interpretation of the definition of an Administrative Modification or a TIP Amendment, the MPO, IDOT, FHWA, and FTA (the parties) will consult with each other to resolve the question. If after consultation, the parties disagree on the definition of what constitutes an Administrative Modification or a TIP Amendment, the final decision rests with FHWA for roadway projects and with FTA for transit projects.

TIP Revision Procedures

This document is an agreement between CUUATS member agencies documenting how these planning partners will address TIP revisions. The procedures conform to State and Federal policies and regulations governing the development and modification of the TIP.

Federally Obligated Projects

Federal regulation requires that the TIP provide reference to projects from the previous fiscal year that have federal funding obligated to them. The following information summarizes those projects from April 1, 2018 through March 31, 2019 that have obligated federal funding.