Surface Transportation Committee (STC) Meeting

Tuesday, February 4, 2020 at 9:00 a.m.

NIRPC Lake Michigan Room, 6100 Southport Road, Portage, IN Annotated Agenda

6100 Southport Road

Portage, Indiana 46368

(219) 763-6060

1.0 Call to Order by Chairman and Pledge of Allegiance

2.0 Public Comment (Chair)

3.0 Meeting Minutes of October 1, 2019 Minutes (Chair)


4.0 Public Comments

This is an opportunity for comments from members of the audience. The amount of time available to speak will be limited to 3 minutes. Commenters must indicate their wish to comment on the sign-in sheet.

5.0 Presentation: Living Streets (Mitch Barloga)

6.0 Fiscal Years 2021-2022 Unified Planning Work Program (Staff)

Staff will discuss the surface transportation-related tasks proposed in the upcoming Fiscal Years 2021-2022 Unified Planning Work Program, the program that aligns the Commission’s projects and resources to tasks fitting the NWI 2050 Plan and other Commission priorities.

7.0 Congestion Management Process Strategy Ranking (Keypad Polling)

This is an opportunity for present members to rank their preferences for strategies that aim to relieve congestion in the Northwestern Indiana Region.

    1. NIRPC Staff Updates (Staff)

    2. Designation of Critical Urban Freight Corridors (CUFCs) Update

    3. Congestion Management Process (CMP) Update

    4. Annual Performance Dashboard Update

    5. Connected and Automated Vehicles (CV/AV) Project Update

    6. 2018 Household Travel Survey Data Update

9.0 Other Business (Chair)

10.0 Adjournment. The next STC meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 5, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. in the Lake Michigan Room at the NIRPC office.

The Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission (NIRPC) prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, disability, marital status, familial status, parental status, sexual orientation, genetic information, political beliefs, reprisal, or because all or part of an individual’s income is derived from any public assistance program.


NIRPC Lake Michigan Room October 1, 2019


Jeff Huet called the meeting to order at 9:02 with the Pledge of Allegiance and self-introductions. In attendance were George Topoll, Union Township Trustee; Dean Button, City of Hammond; Jeff Huet, Town of Schererville; Dennis Cobb, First Group Engineering; David Wright, GPTC; and Joshleen Denham, Town of Trail Creek.

NIRPC staff present were Peter Kimball, Trey Wadsworth, Mitch Barloga, Gabrielle Biciunas, Meredith Stilwell, Kevin Polette and James Gross.

There was no public comments.

The minutes of the June 4, 2019 meeting were approved on a motion by Dean Button as concurred by Jeff Huet.

Mitch Barloga presented on the Living Streets policy. NIRPC adopted the Complete Streets policy in 2010 and is now moving forward with the Living Streets policy due to the significant increase in green infrastructure planning over the last 10 years. The objective is to merge the Complete Streets and Green Streets policies into the Living Streets policy. To accomplish this objective, NIRPC will create a Living Streets workshop to review the draft document in detail. The first meeting is scheduled for November 13, 2019, at 1:30 p.m. in the Lake Michigan Room at NIRPC. The final draft document will be discussed at the topical committees before being presented to the TPC and Full Commission meetings.

Peter Kimball reported on the designation of Critical Urban Freight Corridors (CUFCs). CUFCs are a designation for corridors determined by the MPO, with INDOT’s blessing, to be critical to the movement of freight and that meet certain minimal criteria, largely determined by the MPO. The Freight and Congestion working group plans to establish criteria and screen potential CUFCs, eventually nominating about 14.5 additional miles to the TPC and Commission for approval at their November meetings. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has final say on whether the corridors are official designated as CUFCs, and if so, they will be eligible for future set- aside funding for a variety of project types. The NIRPC Commission approved the Willowcreek Rd/Crisman Rd corridor between US 20 and the Indiana Toll Road ramp as a CUFC at their August 15th meeting, pending FHWA’s final approval. The working group is meeting October 15th to finalize the designation criteria and make progress toward nominating the additional 14.5 miles of Critical Urban Freight Corridors.

Peter Kimball gave an update on the Congestion Management Process (CMP). The Freight and Congestion Working Group is also overseeing the update of the CMP. NIRPC is required to administer a CMP for northwest Indiana since it is planned to be a region greater than 200,000 people. A CMP is a framework for managing congestion in a way that suits users’ expectations. Any agency wishing to use NIRPC-administered federal funds to advance certain capacity-adding projects must demonstrate that those projects conform to the CMP. The current CMP was adopted in 2011. The plan is to adopt and update to the CMP in May of 2020, with a draft completed by March 2020. An online survey has been sent out. NIRPC is also working on creating one repository where all traffic data that has been collected can be combined and analyzed to show existing conditions, which will be one of the first sections of the CMP update. Traffic counts and travel time data have been collected, but more types of traffic data will be collected in the future. Traffic counts were collected using tube counters in the past, but Miovision camera counters are being explored as it would have the ability to collect rail-highway at-grade crossing delay and turning movement counts. A lot of counts are courtesy of INDOT’s Traffic Count Database System. Travel time probe data has been retrieved from the National Performance Measure Research Dataset on the major highways. Field data has been collected using handheld GPS devices for other arterials.

Peter Kimball gave an update on the Annual Performance Dashboard. The Performance Based Planning (PbP) Framework includes 98 performance measures about how our region is performing through the lens of the NWI 2050 Plan. The Annual Performance Dashboard is an effort to display the region’s performance on the 98 performance measures in a legible and interactive way that can be monitored over time. NIRPC staff has researched best practices from other agencies that have implemented performance dashboards and begun the process of putting together design templates for the dashboard. A survey of possible design templates will be sent out in November.

Peter Kimball gave an update on the Connected and Automated Vehicles (CV/AV) Project. NIRPC is working to ensure that communities and partner agencies are prepared for connected and automated vehicles before they are deployed on the region’s roads. The main focus of this task is preparation in terms of what types of transportation projects would be most suitable; what land use and zoning impacts, including parking, might they expect; and what types of workforce impacts might have to be prepared for. An extensive amount of literature has been reviewed and various meetings and workshops about connected and automated vehicles have been attended. An online survey will be distributed in December to ascertain what members of the public and communities think about connected and automated vehicles. The end deliverable of this task will be a brochure distributed to each of the communities so they can act on the information if the choose.

Peter Kimball gave an update on the 2018 Household Travel Survey Data. In fall 2018, NIRPC sent out a household travel survey to approximately 60,000 households in northwest Indian. About 17,000 responses were received. The project vendor, Westat, has completed the final report and the findings are being analyzed and will be used to calibrate the Travel Demand Model to more accurately forecast the travel in the region, as well as, inform long range planning in general to base sounder future decisions on.

There was no other business.

The next Surface Transportation Committee meeting is scheduled for February 4, 2020 at 9 a.m. at NIRPC. Meeting adjourned.