Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission Transportation Improvement Program (TIP)

For Lake, Porter, and LaPorte Counties, Indiana for 201 6 -2019


As Adopted

May 21, 2015


Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission 6100 Southport Road, Portage, IN 46368-6409

Telephone: 219.763.6060 Fax: 219.762. l653

www.nirpc.org



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Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) for Lake, Porter, and La Porte Counties, Indiana

for 2016-2019


Table of Contents

  1. Introduction 1

    About NIRPC 1

    Basic Federal Requirements for TlP's 4

    Organization of the TIP Document 6

    List of Appendices 6

  2. TIP Development & Project Selection Processes 8

MPO Planning Process 8

Transportation Policy Committee. 8

NIRPC Organizational Chart. 9

MPO Planning Area 10

Urbanized Areas and Federal Funds 10

Major Projects Implemented from Prior TIP 13

TIP Development Process 13

Transportation Alternatives Program Solicitation 13

Consolidated NOFA 2014-2 Solicitation 14

Public Transit Project Solicitation 17


Solicitation Materials-TAP

Solicitation Materials-NOFA 2014-2 (HSIP, CMAQ, STP 1 1 )

Solicitation Materials-Public Transit Projects


  1. Program of Projects and Related Information 85


    Introduction and Summary 85

    Page Numbering/Printing the List 85

    Contacting NIRPC 85

    Using the List: Types of Federal Funds 86

    Using the List: Column Headings 86

    Lists of Projects Begins Following Page 88


    APPENDICES


    Appendix A: Official Actions and Compliance.

    NIRPC Board Resolutions: 1) Adopting the Conformity Determination, 2} Adopting Amendment #2 to the Long Range Plan, and 3} Adopting the 2014-2019 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP}. Planning Self­ Certification. This appendix will be included in only the fina l (published) version of the TIP.


    Appendix B: Public Involvement. This appendix will be included in only the final (published) version of the TIP.


    Appendix C: Conformity Determination. This appendix will be included in only the final (published) version of the Tl P.


    Appendix D: TIP Financial Plan.


    Appendix E: Prior Project Selection Processes. This appendix will be included in only the final (published) version of the TIP. Includes only 2013 solicitation materials for STP I program.


    Appendix F: NIRPC Commissioners, TPC Contact/Membership Lists, and Transit Operators. This appendix will be included in only the final (published) version of the TIP.

    Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) for Lake, Porter, and LaPorte Counties, Indiana for 2016-2019

    Part I: Introduction


    A Transportation Improvement Program, or TIP, is a short-range financial and spending plan for the utilization of U.S. Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT) surface transportation funds. These funds, identified later in this document, are used for highway, transit, a nd non-motorized transportation projects. NIRPC's TIP is updated every other year and includes projects undertaken by municipalities, counties, transit operators, and the State of Indiana. Federal (U.S. DOT) planning regulations guide the preparation and development of TIP documents.


    The Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission (NIRPC) has been designated by the Governor as a Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) to undertake transportation planning for northwestern Indiana. We are a council of governments established under Indiana law. NIRPC has, pursuant to the federal planning regulations, undertaken a continuing, cooperative, and comprehensive transportation planning process that includes, among other things, the development of a Long Range Transportation Plan and Transportation Improvement Program (TIP).


    The TIP process is designed to ensure the implementation of the goals and objectives identified in NIRPC's Regional Transportation Plan.


    NIRPC's Regional Transportation Plan is the Transportation Section of the 2040 Comprehensive Regional Plan (CRP), adopted in June 2011, and as amended a nd updated (most recently) in May 2015.


    About NIRPC

    NIRPC was originally established as the Lake-Porter County Regional Transportation and Planning Commission in 1965, pursuant to an act of the Indiana General Assembly. An amendment to this legislation in 1973 provided the Commission with its current name and allowed for the addition of new member counties. La Porte County joined NIRPC in 1979. The most recent major change to NIRPC's authorizing legislation occurred in 2003 -which esta blished NIRPC as a council of governments.

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    NIRPC is a regional council of local governments serving the citizens of Lake, Porter, and La Porte counties in Northwest Indiana. The entire three-county area is part of the U.S. Census Bureau's Chicago Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). Northern Lake and Porter Counties are a part of the Chicago, IL/IN urbanized area. NIRPC provides a forum that enables the citizens of Northwest Indiana to address regional issues relating to transportation, the environment and community, and economic development.


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NIRPC's metropolitan planning area is located at the southern tip of Lake Michigan and represents an integral part of the greater Chicago metropolitan area. It consists of 771,815 people {2010 Census) and covers 1,520 square miles. There are forty-one cities and towns and forty-four townships within the NIRPC planning area.


NIRPC Commissioners. There are fifty-three Commissioners-all of whom are elected officials. In addition to the 41 municipal appointments (one per city or town), the County Councils, Boards of Commissioners, and County Surveyors appoint one member each, as does the Governor. The Commission or the Executive Board meets monthly. NIRPC's meetings are open to the public a nd there is a place on every agenda for public comment.

The legislation under which the Commission operates is contained within Indiana Code Title 36, Article VII, Chapter 7.6. Section 12 of this statute plainly states our purpose:


"The purpose of the commission is to institute and maintain a comprehensive plannin g and prog ramming process for:

(1) transportation;

{2} economic development; and

{3} environmental;

polic y and provide a coordinative management process for the counties described in section 1 of this chapter. The commission shall coordinate its activities with all member units in the counties and shall coordinate and assist the planning programs of member units and the state that are related to its pur pose. N


One of the most important designations NIRPC has received is that of Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for northwestern Indiana. MPO's are responsible, together with state departments of transportation and public transit operators, for carrying out the transportation planning process for urbanized areas.


Of equal importance is our status as a Designated Recipient of U.S. Federal Transit Administration (FTA) funds (in two urbanized areas) under three FTA grant programs. We function as the grantee for seven (7) local public bus transit operators. We are also the cognizant Designated Recipient for the Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District (NICTD), Indiana's only commuter railroad.


Our region is a diverse and dynamic whose complexities are reflected in the regional tra nsportation system. The NIRPC planning area includes arguably some of the most strategic and critical links in the national transportation system. These factors combine to make the role of MPO for northwestern Indiana extraordinarily challenging. NIRPC, in undertaking its mission, is cognizant of its obligations and responsibilities, under various federal and state statutes, to promote inclusion and not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, national origin, or any other factor.


Basic Federal Requirements for Transportation Improvement Programs.


The U.S. Department of Transportation's current planning regulations1 associated with the implementation of surface transportation programs issued include specific requirements for development and content of TIPs. These requirements are summarized below.



Organization of the TIP Document


This balance of this document is organized into the following two parts:


Part II: TIP Development and Project Selection Processes. This chapter contains a description of the MPO planning process, general guidelines we follow in soliciting and selecting local projects with federal funds that are assigned to us, and a brief description of INDOT's project selection processes.


This is followed by a more detailed discussion of our two 2014 solicitation NOFA's (Notice of Fund Availability) for Local Highway projects, and our 2015 solicitation for public transit projects.


As already noted, solicitation and selection system details for STP I projects (in the Chicago urbanized area) from our 2013 solicitation can be found in Appendix E.


Part Ill: Program of Projects and Related Information. This chapter begins with a summary explanation of the actual list of projects, including tabular and gra phic information. This is followed by a key to interpreting the information in the tables and where to go to get additional information.


LIST of APPENDICES


Appendix A: Official Actions and Compliance. This appendix contains the NIRPC Board resolutions adopting the Conformity Determination, Plan, and TIP. This section also contains the NIRPC Board resolution authorizing execution of the required planning process certification document.


Appendix B: Public Involvement. This appendix contains the public involvement-related documentation relative to the Conformity

Determination, Plan, and TIP. This includes comments and our responses. This appendix will be included in only the final (published) version of the TIP.


Appendix C: Conformity Determination. This document, adopted separately, will be included only in the final (published) version of the TIP.


Appendix D: Financial Plan. The joint FTA/FHWA Planning regulations identify three primary purposes of the financial plan for Transportation Improvement Programs: 1) To demonstrate how the TIP, if approved, will be implemented; 2) To identify resources from public & private sources that are reasonably expected to be made available to carry out the TIP; and

3) To recommend additional financing strategies to carry out needed projects and programs.


Appendix E: Prior Project Selection Processes. This appendix contains details on the manner in which Surface Transportation Program (STP) projects were selected for funding in Lake and Porter Counties in 2013.


Appendix F: NIRPC Commissioners, TPC Contact/Membership Lists, and Transit Operators.