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Project Prioritization

The HRTPO uses an objective and data-driven project prioritization process to assist the HRTPO Board in selecting transportation projects that will benefit the region while maximizing the use of scarce financial resources.  The HRTPO Project Prioritization Tool is designed to score candidate transportation projects based on their technical merits and regional benefits.  The Tool evaluates transportation projects based on three components:  Project Utility (ability to solve an existing transportation issue), Economic Vitality (ability to support economic growth), and Project Viability (project readiness and compatibility).  Once evaluated, projects undergo public review and top-ranking projects are then selected for inclusion in the regional Long-Range Transportation Plan (LRTP), based on available funding.  In addition to facilitating the selection of projects for the LRTP, the Tool also helps to position the region in the pursuit of additional Federal, State, and Regional transportation funds as they become available.

For additional information on the HRTPO Project Prioritization process, please refer to the RESOURCES section below.

Project Prioritization and the Long-Range Transportation Plan

Project Prioritization is an essential part of the development of the Long-Range Transportation Plan (LRTP) as scores produced from this process aid regional decision-makers in selecting projects for the Plan.  For the LRTP, candidate transportation projects are submitted by regional stakeholders and citizens from across the area.  These projects generally range in scope from interstate bridges and tunnels to new bike paths and multi-use trails.    For prioritization purposes, candidate projects are evaluated in separate categories (highway, interchange, bridge/tunnel, transit, intermodal/freight, and active transportation) in order to align with potential funding sources (which are often tied to transportation mode or facility type).  Because of funding constraints, as well as the differences in evaluation criteria, project scores are not compared across categories. 

Updating the Project Prioritization Tool

Evaluation criteria for the HRTPO Project Prioritization Tool are based on the current regional vision and can be modified to address changing regional priorities.  In 2017, per the direction of the LRTP Subcommittee, HRTPO staff initiated a formal process to review and update the Project Prioritization Tool to incorporate feedback received from regional stakeholders as well as ensure continued alignment with Federal and State planning factors. Recommended enhancements to the Tool were developed through a collaborative process with various HRTPO committees, regional stakeholders, and the public.  The HRTPO Board approved the recommended enhancements at its July 16, 2020 meeting.

For more information on the enhancements to the Project Prioritization Tool, please refer to the document links below:

HRTPO Project Prioritization:  Summary of Enhancements

HRTPO Project Prioritization:  Summary of Enhancements – Additional Resource Slides


HRPTO Program Priorities Methodology Report

HRTPO Program Priorities Methodology Report - Appendix

2045 LRTP Prioritization of Transportation Projects