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Annual transportation planning process underway

From reconstructing intersections to installing new roundabouts to adding traffic lights, sidewalks, and bike paths, transportation planning is a lengthy and robust process involving state and local transportation planners and the public.

Each year, the Cape Cod Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) and the Cape Cod Joint Transportation Committee (CCJTC) meet publicly to review the development of the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) and the Unified Planning Work Program (UPWP), plans that set the course for transportation work across the region.

The TIP is a five-year list of transportation infrastructure projects funded by state and federal sources, which last year totaled more than $425 million over the five-year plan. Safety and congestion concerns and climate resiliency for all transportation modes drive prioritization. TIP projects typically include roadway and intersection reconstruction, shared-use path construction, and the purchase of new buses to support regional bus service. Recent projects include the construction of a roundabout at the intersection of Route 28 and Quanset Road in Orleans, a shared-use path along Service Road in Sandwich, and intersection improvement set to begin this Spring in Wellfleet at Route 6 and Main Street.

The UPWP is a list of planning activities anticipated to be performed by Cape Cod Commission transportation staff over the next year. Funding for UPWP projects comes from a combination of state and federal sources. Typical UPWP projects include data collection efforts, safety studies, bicycle planning initiatives, and coastal resiliency projects. Projects seek to address safety and congestion concerns and climate resiliency issues for all transportation modes, including vehicle, transit, bicycle, and pedestrian travel.

Recent UPWP projects include a parking and circulation study in downtown Chatham, improved data collection for non-motorist traffic Cape-wide, and an interchange safety analysis.

The process for the development of these programs for the upcoming federal fiscal year began in January. Project selections occur in March, and the MPO releases draft documents in April for public comment. Following the public comment and review period, the MPO finalizes and votes to approve the documents in May.

This spring and summer, the public will have several chances to learn more about the TIP and UPWP as staff are planning public meetings, forums, and educational opportunities across the region. The public input process is an essential facet of the transportation planning process. It allows people who use roadways daily to share their experiences and views on potential changes.

If your organization would like to partner on an outreach event, or if you have ideas or support for TIP and UPWP projects, please email

To learn more about the transportation planning process, please visit

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