December 5, 2020
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The Illinois Department of Transportation said that the application period for its Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program (ITEP) – open from now until November 2 – will provide $105.6 million to fund biking and walking paths, trails, streetscape beautification work and other improvements designed to encourage safe multimodal travel at the local level.

[Above photo by the Illinois DOT.]

The agency said those ITEP funds come from the state’s six-year, $45 billion Rebuild Illinois capital plan – established in 2019 – and will set aside 25 percent of that money specifically for “disadvantaged and economically distressed” communities.

Omer Osman

“Part of our core mission at [the Illinois] DOT is empowering disadvantaged communities and working with local decision makers to improve transportation options and quality of life,” said Omer Osman, acting secretary for the Illinois DOT, in a statement.

“Under Gov. [J.B.] Pritzker, we have made major improvements to the Illinois Transportation Enhancement Program that will mean greater participation and more resources where they are needed most,” he added.

The Illinois DOT added that applicants for ITEP funds can include local governments and regional planning commissions, while nonprofit and private entities that apply must have a public sponsor. The maximum award is $2 million and the agency plans to provide an online map and scoring system to determine local match requirements and identify high-need communities.

Concurrently with its ITEP grants , the Illinois DOT issued the second of six $250 million grants to counties, municipalities and townships on July 31 to address local transportation needs – part of $1.5 billion being distributed over three years to advance municipal, township and county projects statewide.

editor@aashto.org

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