Minnesota Department of Transportation

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Congressional Transportation Status Report



Area Transportation Partnerships

MnDOT created Area Transportation Partnerships over two decades ago in response to changes in federal law that increased state flexibility and the need for public involvement in transportation planning and program decision-making. ATPs were established by each district specifically to facilitate broader input to the federal project selection process for the development of the State Transportation Improvement Program, which is a four-year program of state and local projects with federal highway and transit funding, as well as 100% state project funding. There are eight ATPs statewide.

The Northwest ATP has been organized along MnDOT District 2 State Aid Boundaries and includes the counties of Kittson, Marshall, Roseau, Pennington, Red Lake, Polk, Norman, Hubbard, Beltrami, Lake of the Woods and Clearwater. Representatives from a variety of entities including cities, counties, MnDOT District 2, transit, industry, tribal and Regional Development Committee and Metropolitan Planning Organization are included in the ATP.

Schedule of activities

  • September – January: Solicits projects; public comment period
  • January-March: Select project: public comment period on selections
  • April 15: Draft ATP due to Office of Capital Programs and Performance Measurement
  • May 1: OCPPM prepares draft STIP; sends to District ATP
  • May – June: Review and comment period on STIP; due July 1
  • July – August: OCPPM develops final draft STIP
  • August – October: MnDOT approves STIP and send to FHWA/FTA for review
  • October – November: STIP approved by FHWA/FTA

Toward Zero Deaths

Toward Zero Deaths is a multi-agency partnership led by the Minnesota Departments of Transportation, Public Safety and Health in cooperation with the FHWA, Minnesota county engineers, the Center for Transportation Studies and other traffic safety organizations. It provides an integrated approach to the application of education, engineering, enforcement and emergency medical and trauma services.

The goal is to raise awareness of traffic safety issues and to develop tools that can be used to reduce the number of deaths and injuries resulting from traffic crashes in Minnesota.

The Northwestern Minnesota Toward Zero Deaths program began in 2008. The counties involved include: Beltrami, Clearwater, Hubbard, Kittson, Lake of the Woods, Marshall, Norman, Pennington, Polk, Red Lake, and Roseau.

Additional information on TZD.

Tribal Governments

All the lands of the Red Lake Nation and portions of the Leech Lake and White Earth reservations lie within the boundaries of District 2, creating unique challenges and opportunities due to varying state, federal and tribal regulations.

District 2 coordinates closely with tribal representatives to consider tribal transportation needs and potential opportunities to collaborate on funding. For example, District 2 is currently in partnership with the Red Lake Nation to remove an old bridge and dam on Highway 1 on the east side of the reservation. This partnership involves constructing a new bridge on the highway and conduct a stream restoration project at the site. Final stages of construction will be completed in 2014.

District 2 and the Red Lake Nation are beginning a cooperative process to plan for several highway improvements involving Trunk Highway 1 in Red Lake. The improvement areas include the urban areas of Red Lake, Redby and pedestrian/bike trails west of Red Lake. The cooperative planning process will include the local communities and Red lake staff input to develop project concepts in anticipation of future projects in the District’s 10 year Highway Improvement Plan.

Grand Forks/East Grand Forks Metropolitan Planning Organization

MPOs have the lead responsibility for the development of a metropolitan area's transportation plans and coordinating the transportation planning process. All urban areas over 50,000 in population are required to have an MPO if the agencies spend Federal funds on transportation improvements. 

The GF/EGF planning area encompasses the cities of Grand Forks, ND and East Grand Forks, MN as well as the urbanized areas and areas anticipated to be urbanized it the next 20-years in Grand Forks County, ND and Polk County, MN.

The MPO is required to prepare a long-range (20 year horizon) transportation plan and a four-year Transportation Improvement Program. These are developed in cooperation with the state and transit operators. The TIP is updated annually and includes a prioritized list of projects and a financial plan consistent with anticipated funding. The state incorporates the approved TIP into the STIP.

A MnDOT District 2 representative participates in the MPO Transportation Advisory Committee. The TAC provides recommendations to the MPO Board on specific issues or projects. Some recent projects include the annual review of flooding events and traffic control planning, the Northwest East Grand Forks Street Network Study and Safe Route to School Projects.

Additional information on the EG/EGF MPO.