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6100 Southport Road Portage, Indiana




Technical Planning Committee

Tuesday, September 14, 2021, 10:00 A.M.

Zoom Info https://us06web.zoom.us/j/87863288049?pwd=SU5GNG9rVWtVeXBRQ0MyY0t0L0JJdz09 Meeting ID: 878 6328 8049 Passcode: 451310

Dial In: (312) 626 6799


  1. Call to Order by Chairman

    1. Pledge of Allegiance

      Minutes of the July 13, 2021 meeting (pp. 1 - 2)


  2. Public Comment on Agenda Items

    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.

  3. Planning

    1. Census Assessment


  4. Programming

    1. Public Comment Report for Amendment #22-02 to FY 2022-2026 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) (p. 3)

      4.2. Resolution 21-17 (p. 4): FY 2022-2026 TIP Amendment #22-02. Click HERE to view Amendment #22-02.


  5. Topical Committee Reports

    Various committees are invited to report out on their meetings.

    1. Environmental Management Policy Committee (EMPC)

    2. Ped, Pedal & Paddle Committee (3PC)

    3. Land Use Committee (LUC)

    4. Surface Transportation Committee (STC)

    5. Transportation Resources & Oversight Committee (TROC)

  6. Reports from Planning Partners

    1. Southshore Clean Cities. Click HERE to view report.

  7. Other Business, Staff Announcements and Upcoming Meeting

    1. Finance and Personnel Committee – September 16 @ 8:00 a.m.

    2. NIRPC Full Commission Meeting – September 16 @ 9:00 a.m.

    3. STC Meeting – October 5 @ 9:00 a.m.

    4. EMPC Meeting – October 7 @ 9:00 a.m.

    5. 3PC Meeting – October 7 @ 1:30 p.m.

    6. TROC Lake and Porter Meeting – October 25 @ 9:00 am

    7. TROC La Porte Meeting – October 25 @1:00 pm

    8. LUC Meeting – November 4 @ 10:00 a.m.

  8. Next Meeting

The next Technical Planning Committee meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, October 12, 2021, at 10:00 a.m.

Technical Planning Committee NIRPC – Virtual Meeting

July 13, 2021


This meeting was convened as an electronic meeting, pursuant to Governor Holcomb’s extended Executive Order 21-16. All persons were meeting remotely on a Zoom platform that allowed for real time interaction and supported the public’s ability to observe and record the proceedings. When the agenda item was provided for public comment, this was supported as well. A roll call was taken to motion and approve the agenda items.

Kevin Brietzke called the meeting to order at 10:03 a.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance and roll call.

In attendance were Mary Tanis, Beth West, Bryan Blazak (St. John), Eric wolverton, George Topoll (Union Township), Jessica Miller, Justin Kiel, Kay Nelson (Forum), Kauri Keagle (SSCC), Mark O’Dell (Chesterton), Kelly Wenger, Tonisha Sibley, Frank Rivera, Jake Dammarell (BFS), and David Wright (GPTC).

NIRPC staff present were Mitch Barloga, Kathy Luther, Lucas Ecklund-Baker, Denarie Kane, Charles Bradsky, Meredith Stilwell, Candice Eklund, Ty Warner, Kevin Polette, Scott Weber, and Flor Baum.

The meeting minutes of April 6, 2021 were approved on motion by Mark O’Dell and second by George Topoll. A roll call was taken, and the committee voted unanimously to approve.

There were no public comments. Planning

Mitch Barloga presented on the Greenway Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) grant application overview. The Marquette Greenway is NIRPC’s regional priority corridor trail that runs East and West, from New Buffalo, MI to Chicago, IL. The total length of the trail will be 60 miles. Currently, 34 miles have been either constructed or funded, and 26 miles are remaining. The 26 incomplete miles are in all three states (17 projects), and the total project cos is

$40,804,916. Burns Harbor has opened a new phase and Michigan City is concluding their phase of the corridor trail. RAISE started in 2009 through stimulus funding. $3.9 billion has been awarded to 299 projects in all 50 states. It is 80% federal money to 20% local match. RAISE projects improve infrastructure, address public and safety, promote regional connectivity, or facilitate economic growth or competitiveness with improvements to racial equity and climate change. FY-21 began in April and ended July 12, 2022. There is $1 billion available nationwide. However, on average, only 5% of the projects get selected. The total RAISE request for funding is $23,119,945, and local funding (+ awards) is at $17,684,945. The Marquette trail, entering County Line Rd, entering Porter County, is proposed to go through West Beach, Ogden Dunes, and into Portage. Please visit www.nirpc.org/raise-grant/ for updates. For more information, contact Mitch at mbarloga@nirpc.org.


Charles Bradsky presented on Resolution 21-14: FY 2022-2026 TIP Amendment #1. No comments were received during the 30-day public comment period. Amendment #1 adding new projects and making other changes as shown on the attachment. There was one deleted sidewalk project in The

City of La Porte. There was also one substantial edition of funds for an intersection improvement in La Porte. The City of Portage had a road reconstruction project. On motion by Mark O’Dell and second by George Topoll, the Technical Planning Committee approved to recommend Resolution 21- 14 to The Commission.

Charles gave an informational presentation on Amendment #15 to the 2020-2024 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) via emergency amendment for inclusion in the Statewide Transportation Improvement Program. Funds for the transportation projects were in the FY 18-21 TIP. However, funding needs to be moved into the FY 20-24 TIP so that GPTC gets their grants before the funds expire. The transit projects have already been approved by The Commission.

Charles presented on Invest in America, a transportation bill that has been passed through Congress, and is being sent to the Senate with favorable status. For The Region, this means $19M in potential funds for four different projects requested by Representative Mrvan. These will have to be obligated by Federal FY-24. The four projects are as follows: Kennedy Ave. bridge ($8.1M), Willow Creek Rd. extension ($7.1M), Central Ave reconstruction in Portage ($2M), and 45th Ave reconstruction in Calumet Township ($1.5M).

Topical Committee Reports

Mitch Barloga spoke on Ped Pedal & Paddle Committee (3PC). The committee met on July 8 and the next 3PC meeting is slated for October 7. Scott Weber informed the committee that the next Surface Transportation Committee (STC) meeting is slated for August 3. Charles Bradsky spoke on Transportation Resources & Oversight Committee (TROC). Lake, Porter, and La Porte counties are scheduled to meet on July 27.

Reports from Planning Partners

Lauri Keagle (SSCC) reported on funding opportunities and educational events. Please click here for complete details of the SSCC report. Visit www.southshorecleancities.org or contact Lauri at lkeagle@southshorecleancities.org. Denarie Kane reported that the NWI Regional Revolving Load fund has been launched. Please click here for complete details or contact Denarie at dkane@nirpc.org.


Hearing no further business, the meeting adjourned at 10:53 a.m.


Public Comment Report

Amendment #22-02 to the 2022-2026 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP)

Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission Technical Planning Committee

September 14, 2021

Amendment #22-02 of the 2022-2026 Transportation Improvement Program was released for a 21- day public comment period which began on August 19, 2021, and ended on September 9, 2021.

The amendments were made available at www.nirpc.org . No comments from the public were received during the comment period on the proposed amendments.

NIRPC did not receive technical comments from the Interagency Consultation Group (ICG). The Air Quality Complete date given by the ICG is August 27th, 2021. All projects are found to be exempt from the Air Quality Conformity and non-regionally significant.







September 16, 2021

WHEREAS, Northwest Indiana’s citizens require a safe, efficient, effective, resource- conserving regional transportation system that maintains and enhances regional mobility and contributes to improving the quality of life in Northwest Indiana; and

WHEREAS, the Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission, hereafter referred to as “the Commission”, being designated the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the Lake, Porter and LaPorte County area, has established a regional, comprehensive, cooperative, and continuing (3-C) transportation planning process to develop the unified planning work program, a transportation plan, and a transportation improvement program to facilitate federal funding for communities, counties, and transit operators, and to provide technical assistance and expertise to regional transportation interests; and

WHEREAS, the Commission performs the above activities to satisfy requirements of the Fixing America's Surface Transportation (FAST) Act of 2015 (PL 114-94), applicable portions of all prior federal transportation program authorizing legislation, as well as other federal, state, and local laws mandating or authorizing transportation planning activities; and

WHEREAS, the FY 2022-2026 Transportation Improvement Programs are a product of a multi- modal, 3-C transportation planning process, compatible with regional goals and objectives and socio-economic and demographic factors used to form the NWI 2050 Plan; and

WHEREAS, the FY 2022-2026 Transportation Improvement Program is an implementation of the NWI 2050 Plan, is fiscally constrained, and is consistent with the State Implementation Plan for Air Quality; and

WHEREAS, the FY 2022-2026 Transportation Improvement Programs are developed by the Commission in coordination and cooperation with local elected and appointed highway and transit officials, special interest and service organizations, including users of public transit, the Indiana Department of Transportation, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management, the U.S. Federal Highway Administration, the U.S. Federal Transit Administration, and the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency; and

WHEREAS, the changes to the FY 2022-2026 Transportation Improvement Programs brought about by this amendment were reviewed by the Air Quality Conformity Task Force’s Interagency Consultation Group (ICG); and

WHEREAS, the changes to the FY 2022-2026 Transportation Improvement Programs brought about by this amendment were subjected to public comment in the manner prescribed by the 2019 Public Participation Plan with no comments received; and

WHEREAS, the Technical Policy Committee (TPC) has recommended that the Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission make these changes to the FY 2022-2026 Transportation Improvement Programs.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission hereby amends the FY 2022-2026 Transportation Improvement Programs by adding the new projects and making other changes as shown on the attachment to this resolution.

Duly adopted by the Northwestern Indiana Regional Planning Commission this sixteenth day of September.


George Topoll Chairperson



Richard Hardaway Secretary