TIP Programmer News

Sep 17, 2013

TIP Programmer News



This week we will be rolling out changes to the database, including major changes in the site navigation structure. All menus will be moved from the left side of the screen to the top. Menu choices will be grouped as shown here:

Main Menu:

TIP Project | Date Import/Export | Project Search | Project Status | Reports

TIP Project Menu:

Detail | Change | History | Modeled Project | Highway Model | Financial Data | Dates | Documents | Notes | New TIP Project

Project Search Menu:

By Project ID | Advanced Search

Project Status Menu:

New Projects | Pending Change Submissions | Project Deletions | Changes on Hold | Awarded Projects | All Pending Items

Reports Menu:

Fiscal Constraint Report | Fund Source Line Items | All Projects Report | Amendment Report

In addition, all users will now be able to view and attach documents and notes to projects.  These features are available to logged in users only, and will not be visible to the public, but will be visible to all others with TIP login credentials, including our state and federal partners.   The Project Documents form includes a list of attached documents, and a form for attaching additional documents.  Note if you are the user that attached a document, you will also have the option to delete the attachment.  CMAP staff can also delete attachments.  The preferred format for attachments is pdf.  Appropriate attachments include news articles about the project, location maps, and approved PPIF and/or other approved forms.

The Project Notes form also includes a list of existing notes and a form for adding additional notes.

Finally, we've added some new reminder messages on the home page and on project pages regarding next change deadlines and meeting dates.


Thank you to all programmers for working with CMAP staff to update the FFY 12 line items!  Please remember that if you added any new lines in FFY 12, you'll need to return to the TIP database to enter authorization and letting and/or award dates to complete the process.  Transit agency line items that remain programmed in FFY 12 need to be removed from the TIP by deletion, authorization, or moving them to another year by December 31, 2012.  Details about individual project phases and additional instructions will be emailed to individual programmers.


The CMAP Transportation Committee approved new state/regional resources for FFY 2013. This includes consolidated and new fund sources per Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21). CMAP staff will be contacting you individually to notify you of the necessary changes that must be made to ensure fiscal constraint of the TIP.


We are currently working on major behind the scenes changes to the way project data is stored and reported.  These changes will improve logging of project history and should speed up the processing time for saving changes and generating reports.  In addition, there will be some changes to the way line item authorization information is processed, improvements to project location information, project contacts and model information.  As a result, the database is planned to be offline following the next TIP change deadline and mandatory training for all programmers will be scheduled during that time.


CMAQ Revision Requests – Scope Changes and Cost Increases for December PSC meeting (11/22/12)

CMAQ Project Selection Committee (PSC) (12/6/12)

Conformity TIP Revisions (12/7/12)

TIP Change Deadline – March IDOT letting (1/9/13)

Transportation Committee Meeting (1/18/13)

TIP Training (tentative) (Week of January 14, 2013)



Earlier this week we rolled out changes to the Advanced Search page (see below) based on requests we've received from you over the last year.  Several fields, including ID number fields and programming agency project name, have been added to the search form.  The ability to select multiple programming agencies, municipalities and counties was also added.  With these enhanced search capabilities it is more important than ever to include as much information as possible, in a consistent format, in these fields in order to get more refined search results.   See the "Search Tips" below for some helpful hints!

Search Tips:

  • You can use a percentage symbol (%) as a wildcard in any text field.  For example, searching for %00074% in the Section Number Field will return all projects that have a section number entered in the database that contains 00074 or searching for %Cermak%DuPage% in the location field will return locations that contain Cermak and DuPage (in that order).
  • Entering a space in any text field will return all projects that have data in that field.
  • Municipality and County will only find projects for which that data was entered in one of the project limits fields.
  • The Location search field searches for the text entered in the project location, limits and other location information fields.
  • You can select multiple values in the Programmer, Municipality, County, and System fields by holding down your CTRL key while selecting.


The end of the Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) was September 30, 2012.  Consequently, all FFY 12 line items need to be removed from the TIP by deletion, award (authorization), or moving them to another year.  Please make all changes by October 31, 2012 as these TIP changes will be considered at the November 16, 2012 CMAP Transportation Committee meeting. Details about individual project phases and additional instructions have been emailed to individual programmers.

CMAQ Status Updates

Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ) program status updates are due October 15 for phases which are currently deferred, were programmed in FFY 2012, or are programmed in FFY 2013.  TIP changes should also be made as updates are completed if the programmed year has changed and the phase did not sunset in 2012.  Please contact Planning Liaisons (for locally sponsored projects) or Kama Dobbs (Kdobbs@cmap.illinois.gov or 312-386-8810) at CMAP with questions about the status updates.


CMAQ Revision Requests – Scope Changes and Cost Increases for October PSC meeting (10/16/12)

CMAQ Project Selection Committee (PSC) (10/30/12)

TIP Change Deadline – January IDOT letting & FFY12 line items (10/31/12)

Transportation Committee Meeting (11/16/12)



On June 29, 2012 some minor changes to the database occurred.  Two new fields were added to the line items section of the project change form:  Federal Project Number and FTA ALI Code(s).  Also, these fields, along with all of the other identifiers (MFT Section number, State Job, etc.) are now associated with financial line items, instead of projects.  Please update these fields as you are making other TIP changes.  The ability to search on these fields will be coming soon.


If you encounter a server error when saving a TIP change, you may need to refresh the page and clear your cache.  Use your browser's "back" button to return to the change form, then press Ctrl-F5 on your keyboard.  Try saving your change again.  Remember that any time you encounter errors, you should notify TIP staff via e-mail (kdobbs@cmap.illinois.gov).  A screen shot of the error message is always appreciated.


CMAP monitors the obligation of federal funding through reports received from IDOT, FHWA, and through the TIP.  An obligation occurs when federal funds are authorized to be spent.  We show this obligation in the TIP by shading line items pink.  To mark a line item as authorized in the database, enter the date that the line item received federal authorization, and the federal and total amounts authorized, in the Authorization fields. 

For projects processed through IDOT, authorization dates for construction phases are shown on the letting schedule and are typically six weeks before the letting.  Authorization amounts are found on the BLR 5310 form.  For non-construction phases, use the date the BLR 5310 for the phase was executed. 

For transit projects, the authorization date is the date a project is included in an FTA grant, and the funding amount included.


Remember that changes to projects that include Not Exempt or Exempt Tested work types must undergo conformity analysis.  All changes to existing projects and any new projects with these work types must be submitted by July 13, 2012 to be included in the next conformity analysis.  Any projects requiring conformity and targeting lettings in November 2012, January 2013 or March 2013 must be conformed at this time.  View conformity FAQs or contact Leroy Kos (lkos@cmap.illinois.gov or 312-386-8780).


The CMAP Board and the MPO Policy Committee approved the revised CMAQ Programming and Management Policies, last month.  Changes to currently programmed CMAQ projects in the TIP need to be completed by the TIP Revision deadline of July 18 for the August 3 Transportation Committee meeting.   Also, any requests for revisions to CMAQ projects that require Project Selection Committee action must be submitted by August 2, 2012 to be considered by the PSC on August 23. Questions regarding CMAQ projects should be directed to Doug Ferguson (dferguson@cmap.illinois.gov or 312-386-8824). 


Transit Focus Group (7/11/12)

CMAQ Project Selection Committee (7/12/12)

Direct Emission Reduction Focus Group (7/12/12)

TIP Changes for Conformity (7/13/12)

TIP Change Deadline – September IDOT letting (7/18/12)

CMAQ Revision Requests – August PSC meeting (8/2/12)

Transit Second Quarter CMAQ Updates (8/15/12)

Transportation Committee Meeting (8/3/12)

CMAQ Project Selection Committee (8/23/12)



Exciting changes in the TIP database now allow you to select multiple Programmers in Advanced Search, the Fund Source Line Items report and the Amendment Reports.  Use the standard Shift or CTRL keys to make your selections.  Multi-select capabilities will be added to additional fields later this summer.  Please direct any suggestions for particular fields or reports where you would benefit from this feature to Kama Dobbs (kdobbs@cmap.illinois.gov or 312-386-8710).

Some changes were also made to Work Types, primarily to allow CMAP to classify projects as maintenance, modernization or expansion to assist with analysis of the TIP and how projects meet the goals of GO TO 2040.  These changes resulted in the addition of new types, particularly for bicycle, pedestrian and transit related work, and the removal of other types.   For example, E-BIKE has been split into three work types:  E-BIKENEW (new facilities – expansion), E-BIKEIMP (modernization of existing facilities, which could include filling of gaps), and E-BIKEMAINT (maintenance of existing facilities).   

Work types that have been removed from the drop-down list can remain on existing projects, however if you're making other changes to a project with one of the eliminated work types, we would appreciate you updating the project by deleting the old type and adding a new type.  Eliminated types include:  A-FNC, A-OPT, and A-SKIDT (replaced with A-OTH); D-VEH; E-BIKE (replaced with E-BIKENEW, E-BIKEIMP, E-BIKEMAINT); E-PED (replaced with E-PEDNEW, E-PEDIMP, E-PEDMAINT); H-IRS (use H-PATCH or H-RS), T-RELOC; T-EXP and T-IMP (replaced with T-NEWSVC, T-IMPSVC); U-COM, U-POW, and U-SIGS (replaced with U-CPSIMP and U-CPSMAINT); V-MAINT and V-STOR (replaced with V-MAINSTOR); X-RELOC (replaced with X-MOD) and;  Z-Museum.  New types include: E-BIKEPARK (Bicycle Parking); E-MODE (Travel Demand Management); E-SRTS (for SRTS projects that are not bike/ped); H-RL (Road Diets/Remove Lanes); J-FUEL (Alternative Fuel Vehicles) and; J-RETRO (Engine Retrofits).

 A full list of active work types can be found on the Programmer Resources web page.  If you would like a list of your projects that currently include eliminated work types, contact Kama Dobbs (kdobbs@cmap.illinois.gov or 312-386-8710).

The ability to run an "All Projects" style report for a select list of TIP IDs was also added.  Select "All Projects Report" from the left-side menu.  You can enter a series of TIP ID's in the form on the left – one TIP ID per line, with no commas, semi-colons or other characters, or you can use the filters on the right.  Select your sort order for either style of report in the center of the page.  As a reminder, the All Projects Report includes only line items that are in the active years (currently 2012 – 2015) of the TIP.  Pending TIP changes are not included.

Finally, validation rules were put in place to remind you to enter a total project cost that equals or exceeds the sum of all line items in the TIP.  All new projects entered in the TIP must have a total cost.  Changes to existing projects will be subject to the validation rule, so you must update total cost when making any change to a project.  Remember that total cost should include the cost of all phases, even if those phases are not included in the TIP, or were completed in the past.  The total cost field is used to analyze the total investment in transportation in the region.


Transportation Committee Meeting (4/27/12)

MPO Policy Committee Meeting (6/14/12)

TIP Change Deadline:  August IDOT letting (5/30/12)

Transportation Committee Meeting (6/15/12)

TIP Changes for Conformity (7/13/12)

TIP Change Deadline:  September IDOT letting (7/18/12)

ITEP Call for Projects

The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) announced it is seeking proposals for the 2012 Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program (ITEP). Approximately $50 million is available for projects. The application form and guidelines are available at www.dot.il.gov/opp/itep.html.  Completed applications must be submitted online by May 29, 2012.

Data Entry Reminder – Project Location and Descriptions

Please remember to take care with project location and work descriptions.  "Various at various" should not be used to describe a project location.  For projects that include various locations, please enter "Various" in the Location field and include some descriptive text, such as "Pavement patching throughout the region" in the Other Project Location Information field.  Also, please do not repeat facility information in the Other Project Location Information field.

Fiscal Constraint

If you are making a change to a project and receive a "Project violates fiscal constraint for <fund source> in <year>" error, you must resolve the constraint violation before your project changes can be saved.  The fund source with the violation may not be the source/year you are trying to change or may not be one that you program, however if your project includes a line item with that source/year, you cannot change your project.  When determining if constraint will be violated, the database includes approved projects and pending changes from all programmers. There are several steps you can take to resolve constraint issues. 

To determine the scope of the issue, view the fiscal constraint report for "projects in the approved TIP, plus proposed TIP Changes" for the fund source listed in the error message (see this video for help with reports).  Look at your balance for the year listed in the error message to determine the balance of funds available for programming in that year.   A negative balance indicates that before you can program any additional funds, you must first remove funds in the amount of the negative balance.  Negative balances are the result of funding allocations being reduced or other adjustments to the programming marks.

To determine what projects currently include line items for the fund source and year, view the Fund Source Line Items Report for that source and year (see this video for help with reports).  If the fund source is constrained "regionwide" (BRR, for example), you should include all programmers in the report.  Select "not awarded" projects and "Include TIP changes".   From this report you can determine what changes can be made to other projects to resolve the constraint violation.

If you are making a change to an existing change record, it is possible for the database to double count line items because of the way change records are saved.  The recommended procedure to eliminate the possibility of double-counting is to delete the existing change record (make sure you have a record of what the changes were, especially if you were not the programmer that made those changes) and then enter a new change for the project that includes prior changes and any new changes you are making.  For help with the change form, see this video.

If you are not the programmer of the fund source that has violated constraint or you have questions about the allocations or adjustments shown in the fiscal constraint report, please contact Russell Pietrowiak (rpietrowiak@cmap.illinois.gov or 312-386-8798) for assistance.

Conformity Analysis

Projects that include Not Exempt or Exempt Tested work types must undergo conformity analysis.  The next analysis period will begin in July.  All changes to existing projects and any new projects with Not Exempt or Exempt Tested work types must be submitted by July 13 to be included in the analysis.  Any projects requiring conformity and targeting lettings in November 2012, January 2013 or March 2013 must be conformed at this time.  CMAP will be coordinating with programmers in the coming weeks regarding projects that include these work types.  Questions regarding conformity should be directed to Leroy Kos (lkos@cmap.illinois.gov or 312-386-8780).


Database Changes

Several features of the database have been recently updated!  Most of the updates are small enhancements, but one very important change was made on the Project Dates form.  Field names and locations were changed, and line item awards will now be triggered by entering an Authorization date, instead of an award date.  Don't worry, all of your past entries have been moved to this field already. 

CMAP staff now has the ability to apply "adjustments" to the fiscal constraint table to reflect situations such as a council having an STP-funded project with another council's TIP ID prefix.   When programming projects, you can only program to a balance of zero for any year for each constrained fund source.  You balance is calculated by adding advanced funding, carryover and positive adjustments to your allotment, and subtracting negative adjustments and your current (including pending changes if you select that option) programmed amount:  Balance = Allotment + Advanced Funding + Carryover +/- Adjustments – Program.  Questions about specific values in these fields should be directed to Russell Pietrowiak (rpietrowiak@cmap.illinois.gov or 312-386-8798).

A field for Project Website has been added.  If your project has a dedicated web site that is project specific or specific to a set of projects, please enter the full URL (i.e. http://www.elginohare-westbypass.org) in the field.  Later this year we will be adding these links to the TIP Map pop-up information.

New messages have been added when you save project changes that will indicate if "Your modification has been approved," "New Change Request has been submitted," or "Your Conformity Amendment will be considered during the next conformity analysis."

An additional filter for Project Type (TIP Project, Major Capital Project, etc.) has been added to the All Projects Report.

Upcoming Events & Deadlines

Transportation Committee Meeting (3/2/12)

MPO Policy Committee Meeting (3/8/12)

TIP Change Deadline (4/11/12)

Transportation Committee Meeting (4/27/12)

TIP Dashboard Launched

The Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) has launched a new dashboard to summarize current TIP projects, as well as projects that will be programmed if funds become available. Projects are displayed by major improvement category (e.g. Highway, Transit, Bicycle, Pedestrian, Other, and Mixed). Instructions for using the dashboard or the TIP map are available on-line. Send feedback on this dashboard to Patricia Berry (312-386-8742 or pberry@cmap.illinois.gov).

Gateway Traveler Information Website

The 2012 Northeastern Illinois Construction Coordination Meeting and Great Lakes Regional Transportation Operations Coalition Work Zone Review took place on February 1 , with representatives from as far away as Minnesota and Ontario, Canada in attendance.  All project implementers are encouraged to provide construction information for the Gateway Traveler Information website, TravelMidwest.com  where it can be distributed in real time to the public.  Information should be emailed to the Gateway Traveler Information System Operator.  Distributing this information can help improve workzone safety by steering traffic away from construction zones. 

ITEP Call for Projects

The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) announced it is seeking proposals for the 2012 Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program (ITEP). Approximately $50 million is available for projects. The application form and guidelines will be available at www.dot.il.gov/opp/itep.html starting February 1, 2012, with proposals accepted through May 29, 2012.

SRTS Awards Announced

On January 24, 2012, Governor Quinn announced the funding recipients for the 2011 Funding Cycle.  229 projects were chosen to receive Safe Routes to School (SRTS) funding totaling $21.7 million.  The full list of awarded projects is available for viewing  on the IDOT SRTS web page.  Locally sponsored projects should be entered into the TIP by the Planning Liaisons.  County and state sponsored projects should be entered by the implementing agency.


Welcome to the first issue of "TIP Programmer News." In an effort to keep TIP programmers up to date on issues relating to TIP changes and the TIP database we have initiated a regularly scheduled update to be sent to you quarterly. We hope you enjoy!

Upcoming Events & Deadlines

Non Exempt/Exempt Tested project change and new projects - 12/9/11
TIP Change deadline - 1/4/12
Transportation Committee Meeting - 1/20/12
Council of Mayors Executive Committee - 2/7/12
CMAQ Project Selection Committee - 12/21/11 and 2/9/12

Conformity Amendment

According to CMAP's Biannual TIP conformity policy we have distributed a list of all not exempt and exempt tested projects and requested you provide updates to the limits, work types, and completion year.  We also requested that any new not exempt or exempt tested projects be submitted.  All changes and new projects requiring conformity analysis determination must be submitted to CMAP staff by December 9, 2011.  For any questions, please contact Leroy Kos (lkos@cmap.illinois.gov or 312-386-8780).

TIP Database Outage Planned for December 12

The TIP database is being migrated to a new server on Monday, December 12.  The database will be unavailable for changes the entire day.  Beginning on December 13, the URL for the database will change to http://tip.cmap.illinois.gov/tip.  Redirect links will be in place for a few weeks, however you should update any bookmarks, shortcuts or links to the database that you are currently using.

Annual Refresher

In an effort to showcase the TIP Database and educate users we are initiating annual TIP refresher classes.  The class will be mandatory for programmers.  The class will go over new functions of the database and any new regulations that may have occurred.  Please bring your questions on the functions of the database to the meeting.  It will be held on January 13, 2012 at 10 a.m. at the CMAP offices.  Please let Teri Dixon(tdixon@cmap.illinois.gov or 312-386-8754) know your plans for attending.  At least one person from each programming agency should plan on attending.

Transit and 2011 Line Items

Transit Programmers:  CTA, Metra and Pace will need to provide new  and updated information that is in your FY 2012-2016 approved RTA budgets.  Also, all FFY11 line items must be awarded, moved or deleted, if you have not done so already.  If you need a refresher on how to proceed,  please view the TIP training videos

Comprehensive Schedule

The comprehensive schedule of meetings and deadlines for calendar year 2012 is now available.  The schedule includes key dates for submitting Conformity updates, CMAQ Status updates, requests for CMAQ programming revisions and Advanced Funding requests.  (Read more) These dates correspond to the CMAQ Project Selection Committee, Transportation Committee, MPO Policy Committee, Regional Coordinating Committee and Council of Mayors Executive Committee meeting schedules as well as FHWA authorization dates for IDOT lettings.  The comprehensive schedule is a great quick reference for Active Program Management of all of your projects.

CMAQ Lessons Learned

CMAP is putting together a report on the development of the FFY 2012-2016 CMAQ Program and the GO TO 2040 Focused Programming approach.  Please provide comments on the program development process to Doug Ferguson (Dferguson@cmap.illinois.gov  or 312-386-8824) as soon as possible (the deadline was 11/30/11).

FHWA Discretionary Grant Programs

FHWA is accepting applications for its discretionary grant programs.  Eligible fund sources for local projects in IDOT District One are the Public Lands Highways and the Transportation, Community and System Preservation programs.  All local agencies interested must coordinated their submittals through IDOT District 1 and the applications (downloadable from FHWA at http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/discretionary/) and are due to Chad Riddle (Charles.riddle@illinois.gov or 847-705-4406)) in Word format at District 1 by the close of business on Friday, December 16, 2011. 

Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program

IDOT plans to accept new applications for the Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program (ITEP) in 2012.  The projected timelines for the 2012 application process are below. Exact dates will be announced later this year. No applications are being accepted at this time.

February 2012: IDOT will start accepting on-line applications
February – May 2012: Application process open
June – August 2012: Application reviews
September - October 2012: Selection committee review & announce approved projects


Case Studies

CMAP is creating a searchable database and map of case studies of projects that implement GO TO 2040.  For more information please visit our website.  If you have any suggestions for projects please complete this form.

TIP Videos

CMAP produced a series of eight short tutorial videos to assist with TIP programming.  The videos cover everything from logging in, viewing and changing projects to running advanced searches and reports.  The videos can be accessed from the CMAP website, from the Help link in the TIP database, or by searching You Tube for "CMAP TIP".


View an interactive map of projects included in the current TIP.  Projects are displayed by county and type of project, with summary information and a link to project details contained in the TIP database.  The map is updated after every Transportation or MPO Policy Committee meeting.

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