Minnesota Department of Transportation

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Congressional Transportation Status Report



Area Transportation Partnerships (ATP)

An ATP is a group of traditional and non-traditional transportation partners including representatives from MnDOT, Metropolitan Planning Organizations, Regional Development Commissions, counties, cities, tribal governments, special interests, and the public that have the responsibility of developing a regional transportation improvement program for their area of the state.  The ATP process was introduced in the early 1990’s to ensure stakeholder participation in the investment of federal transportation funding. The ATP process provides for early and continuous involvement in the development of the State Transportation Improvement Plan a four year list of projects that are expected to be done within that timeframe.

The ATP solicits for projects that are eligible for federal funding. The resulting project lists are reviewed and integrated into the Area Transportation Improvement Program which is then sent to MnDOT’s Office of Transportation System Management to be included in the State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP). The final STIP is forwarded to the Federal Highway Administration/Federal Transit Administration for approval. No federal projects can be started until this approval is received.

The Eight County Metro Area Transportation Partnership was organized to prioritize federal and state-funded transportation investments within the eight-county Metro District. The Metro ATP emphasizes planning as a basis for transportation investment decisions and values the meaningful involvement of transportation stakeholders. The Metro ATP uses a combination of three processes to set priorities: 1) the Twin Cities seven-county Metropolitan Planning Organization process, 2) the MnDOT Metro Program Committee process, and 3) the Metro/Region 7E Integrating Committee process (which includes Chisago County).

The Metro District compiles all project data resulting from these three processes and submits tables including all to the Metropolitan Council Transportation Advisory Board (the region's designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for review and adoption as the MPO Transportation Improvement Program. Metro submits project lists for all eight counties to the MnDOT Office of Capital Programs and Performance Measures for inclusion in the state TIP.

Schedule of activities

  • January – March: Compile project lists from ATP process
  • April: Draft TIP submitted to Metropolitan Council
  • April: Draft ATIP submitted to MnDOT
  • April – June: Public Comment Period
  • June/July: Public Hearing
  • August/September: Final TIP adopted
  • August/September: MnDOT approves TIP
  • October/November: FHWA / FTA makes finding and accepts funding


MnPASS Project Development

I-35E MnPASS Project

MnDOT had added new MnPASS Express Lanes on both directions of I-35E between Cayuga St. and Little Canada Rd. This is the first MnPASS investment in the East Metro area and an essential link for people commuting between downtown St. Paul and the suburbs to the north.  More information. Phase II of the project will open sometime in 2016 and includes the southbound lane between County Road 96 and Little Canada Road and the northbound lane between County Road E and County Road J.

I-35W/I-94/Lake St. Transit Station/MnPASS Extension Project

This project includes the extension of the southbound I-35W MnPASS lane (42nd Street to 26th Street) in Minneapolis, as well as the conversion of the Priced Dynamic Shoulder Lane on I-35W to a typical MnPASS lane. Components of the project are in various stages of planning and engineering, and construction is anticipated in 2017. More information.

I-35W North MnPASS Project

In June 2013, MnDOT completed the I-35W North Managed Lanes Corridor Study to identify and evaluate lower-cost/high-benefit options for improving traffic operations along I-35W between downtown Minneapolis and TH 97 in Columbus/Forest Lake. The study recommended implementation phases for adding MnPASS lanes in the corridor. MnDOT is currently designing a road project that includes adding a lane, in each direction, to I-35W between Hwy 36 in Roseville and Lexington Avenue (Co Rd 17) in Blaine. MnDOT is also analyzing the need and locations for building noise walls along the interstate. More information.

I-94/280 Managed Lanes Concept Development Study

This study is developing and evaluating concepts for adding a MnPASS lane in each direction on I-94 between Minneapolis and St. Paul, as well as direct connections into each central business district. The study is expected to be complete late spring/early summer 2014. Funding is identified for this project in the 2020-21 timeframe.

Hwy 77 Managed Lane & Cedar Grove Access Engineering Study

This preliminary engineering study is essentially complete. The study recommended adding a northbound MnPASS lane between 138th St. in Apple Valley and Old Shakopee Rd. in Bloomington. The study also concluded that the benefits of the MnPASS lane cannot be fully achieved without improvements to manage or reduce congestion along westbound I-494 between TH 77 and I-35W. More about the Hwy 77 managed lane study.

Hwy 36 EB (I-35W – I-35E) Project Scoping

The addition of an eastbound MnPASS lane on TH 36 between I-35W and I-35E is being scoped for potential construction in 2019.

I-94 Gateway Corridor EIS Scoping

A recent Alternative Analysis evaluated several transit alternatives on I-94 between St. Paul and Wisconsin for Federal New Starts transit funding. The recommendation from the study includes BRT and LRT alternatives along the Hudson Rd. route (north of I-94 between St. Paul and Manning Ave.). The recommendation does not include the managed lane BRT alternative that was evaluated. More information.

Studies under consideration

MnPASS managed lane studies are currently under discussion on:

  • I-494 (MSP Airport West to a location TBD)
  • Hwy 169 (I-394 Shakopee)

See past MnPASS studies