NCDOT Prioritization

Background

Passed in 2013, the Strategic Transportation Investments law allows the N.C. Department of Transportation to use its funding more efficiently and effectively to enhance the state’s infrastructure, while supporting economic growth, job creation and a higher quality of life. This process encourages thinking from a statewide and regional perspective while also providing flexibility to address local needs.

STI also establishes the Strategic Mobility Formula, which allocates available revenues based on data-driven scoring and local input. It is used to develop NCDOT’s State Transportation Improvement Program, which identifies the transportation projects that will receive funding during a specified 10-year period.

Federal law requires the State Transportation Improvement Program to be updated at least every four years. NCDOT, however, updates it every two years.

Work is currently underway to update the STIP for 2023-2032.

The data-driven process to update the STIP is called strategic prioritization. The current cycle to update the STIP for the years 2023-2032 is called Prioritization 6.0 or P6.0. It started in summer 2019 when NCDOT divisions and local planning organizations gathered public feedback on projects, which then were submitted for evaluation and scoring.

Projects of all modes, including highway, bicycle/pedestrian, transit, and others are scored based on a combination of quantitative data and local input. The quantitative evaluation consists of criteria such as congestion and safety, and analyzing project benefits compared to cost, as well as expected economic impacts. Local input comes from the priorities of the local Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) and NCDOT Division Offices.