Government funding of projects can be a long and complicated process. I am here to break down one such process…
The N.C. Department of Transportation’s transportation has a plan. It’s called the State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP). It lays out the construction funding and schedule for state transportation projects over a 10-year period.
There is a data-drive process used to update the STIP called “strategic prioritization” where potential transportation improvement projects are scored and ranked at the statewide, regional and division levels based on stuff like safety, congestion, benefit-cost and local priorities.
Earlier this year NCDOT released the data scores for more than 2,100 highway, aviation, bicycle-pedestrian, transit, rail and ferry projects evaluated for the 2020-2029 STIP. The projects that did not score high enough to be funded in the Statewide category are then considered and potentially funded via the Regional or Division category. Winston-Salem and Forsyth County fall with Division 9.
We’re now at the stage of this process where projects that were not included at the state or regional level are being reviewed in each division. There are several bicycle infrastructure improvement projects in our area that could be submitted for funding:
Portion of the Multi-Use Path running parallel to Business 40 from Lockland Avenue to Peters Creek Parkway (ranked #19)
Little Creek Greenway Expansion from Atwood Road to Somerset (ranked #77)
Muddy Creek Greenway Expansion from Jefferson School Lane to Yadkinville Road — part of planned Mountains to Sea Trail (ranked #68)
Bike lanes on Lewisville-Clemmons Road from Styers Ferry Road to Shallowford Road (ranked # 41)
Bike lanes on Robinhood Road from Norman Road to Lewisville-Clemmons Road (ranked #67)
Bike/Ped accommodations on Country Club Road from PeaceHaven Road to the new Western Beltway (ranked # 34)
You can see the full Draft Division Level Local Point Assignments for Division 9 HERE
All this is data-based but citizens play a role too! Division 9 may make adjustments to the Draft Division Level Local Point Assignments based on public input and support as evidenced through public comments.
If you support one of these projects – let them know. If you do not support one of these projects – let them know. If you think more funding needs to be allocated to Bike/Ped projects – let them know.
Without your input the data alone drives which projects are funded and completed. This is our opportunity to contribute feedback and help steer the direction of our city. It may seem insignificant or futile but I promise that it is not. Many government processes receive little to no public input so when they do get some input from citizens they take note and it really can make a difference.
If we all do a little more to be involved in this, and other government processes, we could see the community reflect more of what we desire. For me, that means more bicycle, pedestrian, transit and other mobility options.
The public comment period ends on Friday, October 5. If you have any feedback – good or bad – please submit your comments via phone, email or mail to:
Fredrick D. Haith Division 9 Planning Engineer, NC DOT
336 747-7800 (office)
375 Silas Creek Parkway Winston Salem, NC 27127
For info about the STIP process and to access maps and other documents please visit the NCDOT State Transportation Improvement Program Site HERE