The HATS transportation project development process begins with the identification of specific project needs as submitted through the Transportation Need Form that is integrated into the RTP. Municipalities and other stakeholders are encouraged to use the form so that transportation needs can be identified and prioritized through the HATS Committees. The RTP is then implemented through the regular activities of HATS staff in coordination with various federal, state and local transportation planning agencies, other stakeholders, and the general public.
The sequence of decisions made through the project development process progressively narrows the project focus and, ultimately, leads to a project that addresses the identified needs. There are ample opportunities for public participation throughout the process. HATS staff continually works with local elected officials and business leaders that have an interest in funding the studies, programs, and/or projects that will improve the transportation network in the region to supplement federal and state transportation funds.
Stakeholders seeking funding for a locally identified transportation need are encouraged to review the RTP and submit an electronic Transportation Need Form. Hard copy versions of the form are available through the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission. Those submitting a form are asked to identify the primary need from one of the options listed below. Needs are then evaluated or assessed using a 5-point scale for each of the categories and ranked as a high, medium, or low priority in terms of the primary need and across the full range of transportation conditions listed below. Rankings are determined statistically using a range of points awarded for the forms that have been submitted. This enables HATS to evaluate needs submitted through the Transportation Need Forms for consistency with the priorities of the RTP and refine project elements so they address the full range of needs that may be present at a given location.
Maximum points are awarded to locations within those areas identified as being in the top 10 crash locations, with lesser points awarded to “other crash locations.” See the System Demand – Safety section of the RTP.
Maximum points are awarded to needs identified within the high priority congested corridors or intersections as identified in the Congestion Management Plan and RTP, with lesser points awarded to the secondary tier of congested corridors. Additional points are also awarded in corridors with higher average daily traffic. See the System Demand – Congestion Management section of the RTP.
Maximum points are awarded to roadway segments with a “Poor” International Roughness Coefficient, with progressively lower points awarded in segments with “Fair,” “Good,” or “Excellent” ratings. See the System Demand – Asset Management section of the RTP.
Maximum points are awarded to bridges identified as “Poor” condition, with progressively lower points awarded to bridges identified as “Fair” or Good condition. See the System Demand – Asset Management section of the RTP.
Accessibility/Transportation for the Disabled and Elderly
Maximum points are awarded in areas with the highest percentages of elderly and/or disabled residents. Additional points are also awarded when needs are identified within ¼ mile of key community facilities (fire stations, police, medical facilities, etc.), major employers, commercial facilities, and transit stops. See the System Demand – Mobility & Accessibility section of the RTP.
Maximum points are awarded to needs identified along the National Highway Freight Network and high priority freight corridor candidates. Points are also awarded to medium and low priority freight corridor candidates, as well as needs within a mile of an intermodal facility or major freight generator. See the Travel Modes – Moving Goods via Roadways section of the RTP.
Transit Access and Facilities
Points are awarded to needs identified within 10 miles of a park and ride facility and within ¼ mile of a CAT bus stop. See the Travel Modes – Moving People via Roadways section of the RTP.
Bicycle and/or Pedestrian Movement
Maximum points are awarded to needs identified along or within ¼ mile of the “Regional Backbone” and/or in areas depicted as having high bicycle/pedestrian demand. Maximum points are also awarded to needs along major Plain Sect travel routes. Lesser points are also awarded to areas identified as having medium or low bicycle/pedestrian demand. See the Travel Modes – Non-Motorized section of the RTP.
Land Use and Growth Management
Maximum points are awarded to needs identified within the Community Service Areas as identified in the Regional Growth Management Plan and RTP. Lesser points are awarded to needs within 1 mile of a CSA and within the Urban or Suburban Core of Planned Growth Areas. See the Linkage to Land Use section of the RTP.
Other options that could be selected as a “primary issue” include stormwater management and other, which allows an individual to explain the primary issue if it does not fall within one of the above categories.
Final implementation of the RTP projects occurs through the four-year Transportation Improvement Program (TIP), updated on a biennial cycle and modified on an as needed basis, as agreed upon through formal HATS action. By processing the project needs submitted by PennDOT or other project sponsors through the project development process identified here, all proposals eligible to receive federal transportation funds are given an equal opportunity to be included on the HATS TIP for implementation. Thus, the TIP serves as a local capital investment plan for the use of federal transportation funds.
To see the full, fiscally constrained list of projects and needs identified through the RTP, click here.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO REPORT
A TRANSPORTATION NEED?
Please feel free to bring a specific problem to our attention by completing the Transportation Need Form.