Photo: Gus LeSaffre on Sakonnet Bridge Bike Lane / by David Hansen, Newport Daily News
On Friday, 10/23/15, RIDOT released the much-anticipated Ten Year Plan –a body of recommendations for statewide transportation priorities. The Ten Year Plan makes recommendations for the TIP.
The Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP) is the list of transportation projects that the state intends to implement. It is overseen by Rhode Island’s federally-mandated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) – the State Planning Council.
Here’s what we can so far expect from both documents:
The RIDOT Ten Year Plan
- RIDOT’s Ten Year Plan makes recommendations for priority projects and budgets. The Plan provides scenarios both with and without Rhode Works, the proposed funding plan that introduces truck tolls, specifically to increase funds for bridge repairs.
- The Ten Year Plan is asset management focused, and dedicates early funds to urgent bridge repairs in response to the severely compromised condition of the state’s bridges.
- With the limited exception of bridges that include both bikes and cars, the Ten Year Plan addresses bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure in two general line items –
- $129.7M is budgeted for Transportation Alternatives that include bike, pedestrian, Safe Routes to School, recreational trails, and retrofit sidewalks to meet ADA requirements.
- $5M is recommended for incentives to choose transportation alternatives such as transit passes, vanpools, bike opportunities, and employer incentives.
The TIP (Transportation Improvement Plan)
- The current TIP for years 2013-2016, expires in September 2016.
- The next TIP will serve years 2017-2025, with proposed annual reviews and updates.
- The invitation to submit applications for the next TIP will be released soon.
- Applicants will be alerted as to which projects from the prior TIP have been resubmitted by RIDOT and which projects will need to be resubmitted by an applicant.
- As no bike projects are specifically detailed in RIDOT’s Ten Year Plan and therefore are not resubmitted by RIDOT, all bike projects from the previous TIP will have to be resubmitted by the applicants, even if they were identified as high priority.
- Applicants will receive guidance in public workshops and from staff at the Statewide Planning Program.
- Each applicant organization and/or community will RANK priorities for their municipal area, including RIDOT’s recommended projects, along with the new and resubmitted projects included in their application.
- There will be a public process to review all projects submitted.
Bari Freeman, Bike Newport’s Executive Director, is a member of the state’s Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC), a key advisory group participating in the development of the TIP. She has requested that the RESUBMIT process be spelled out very specifically in all correspondence and in the Application Guide so all stakeholders are fully aware that bicycle infrastructure projects from the previous TIP must be resubmitted.
Again, the Ten Year Plan can be viewed, downloaded, and searched HERE.