Region needs sustainable transportation funding to thrive
Northeastern Illinois’ transportation system has historically been and continues to be a primary strategic advantage for the region. However, for more than a decade, traditional transportation revenue sources have failed to adequately maintain our transit, roads, and bridges, much less provide sufficient revenues to modernize or expand. CMAP has published a new Policy Update explaining why state and federal revenues have fallen short of meeting our transportation funding needs. The Update underscores how dire the situation has become, particularly for the region’s transit system and for local governments charged with maintaining their roads. Previewing future Updates in the series, which will delve into several transportation revenue recommendations in ON TO 2050, the update also summarizes four principles that CMAP recommends any new revenues meet to suit our region’s needs.
This week’s news also highlighted the need for transportation funding. The Chicago Tribune wrote about how much time local drivers spend stuck in traffic each year. Numerous media outlets including WBBM NewsRadio and the Trib reported on an emergency closure of North Lake Shore Drive due to two cracked steel beams that support the roadway. Crain’s Chicago Business underscored that the closure “serves as a foreboding reminder of Chicago’s infrastructure needs,” and the Trib took the opportunity to editorialize in favor of a road usage charge to pay for our region’s infrastructure needs. CBS Chicago reported on the Des Plaines River Bridge, which is structurally "intolerable." A recent CityLab article noted that the federal highway trust fund will run out of funding by 2022 -- but the part of that fund allocated to transit will be gone even sooner, in 2021.
Water affordability and infrastructure
American Public Media recently published a nine-month investigation concerning water affordability around the Great Lakes, including Chicago. A companion piece from WBEZ detailed how water prices have spiked in recent years -- nearly tripling in Chicago between 2007-18 -- which has forced thousands of residents to go without running water.
ON TO 2050/FFY 2019-2024 TIP Conformity Analysis and TIP Amendment
The CMAP Transportation Committee recently released the following conformity analyses of ON TO 2050 and the FFY 2019-2024 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). Please review the ON TO 2050/TIP Conformity Analysis & TIP Amendment 19-04 and the ON TO 2050 Regionally Significant Projects (RSP) Conformity Analysis and TIP Amendment 19-04.1. Comments may be submitted to CMAP by mail, email, or phone (312-454-0400) through Monday, February 18.
Proposed amendments to ON TO 2050
ON TO 2050 identifies a list of fiscally constrained regionally significant projects (RSPs), which are eligible to receive federal transportation funds and obtain certain federal approvals. The City of Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) has requested amendments to ON TO 2050 to designate two proposed projects -- the O’Hare Express System, and Roadway Improvements to Support the Update to the South Lakefront Framework Plan -- as RSPs.
Per the amendment process, CMAP has conducted both qualitative and quantitative evaluations of the proposals. Memos reporting on these analyses are available for public comment through Monday, February 25. Following the public comment period, CMAP staff will produce a recommendation memo, which will be voted on by the CMAP Board on Wednesday, March 13, and by the Metropolitan Planning Organization Policy Committee on Thursday, March 14.
APA-IL call for projects
The American Planning Association - Illinois Chapter (APA-IL) is relaunching its Pro Bono Planning Services Program and is accepting applications from municipalities, neighborhood associations, nonprofits, and community organizations seeking assistance with planning projects.
Regional Housing Initiative
Since 2002, the Regional Housing Initiative (RHI) has helped develop affordable housing in over 30 communities around the CMAP region and is now accepting developer applications for 2019. Developers also interested in applying for the Illinois Housing Development Authority’s low-income tax credits should contact Jonathan Burch (firstname.lastname@example.org or 312-386-8690) for more information.
Helping communities prosper through transportation investments
Calumet Area Industrial Commission
2019 Kick-Off Luncheon: ON TO 2050: Helping Communities and the Calumet Prosper
Ridge Country Club
10522 S. California Ave.
Chicago, IL 60655
February 21, 2019
11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Urban Transportation Center Spring Seminar:
ON TO 2050: Exploring the Plan's Digital Implementation Tools
Great Cities Institute Conference Room
412 S. Peoria St., Suite 400
Chicago, IL 60607
February 21, 2019
Noon to 1:00 p.m.