Section 4: Statewide Transportation Improvement Program

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Statewide Programs

In general, federal funds made available to TxDOT from FHWA and other sources, such as Congressional High Priority Projects, are divided into two basic types of funding categories. These basic types are “bank balance” and “project specific.” TxDOT, based on federal legislation and Texas Transportation Commission concurrence, has identified over 30 funding categories for both federal funds and state funds. Information on these funding categories is contained in the Texas Transportation Commission Unified Transportation Plan (UTP).

In order not to dilute the distribution of project specific funding categories, TxDOT has developed ranking systems using various factors and criteria. Ranking is done at the state level and the selected projects are then approved by the Texas Transportation Commission. The ranking and selection process is normally conducted during the annual UTP preparation process.

District offices and the MPOs will not normally know what specific projects are going to be selected in the project specific funding categories. When selected, the specific project lists are included in the Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP), under a section called Statewide Programs. Examples of funding categories included in the Statewide Programs are:

  • on-system and off-system bridges
  • railroad crossing safety projects
  • transportation enhancement projects
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MPO TIP Inclusion

After approval by the MPO policy body, and based on recommendation by the TxDOT Executive Director, the Texas Transportation Commission may approve including an MPO Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) without modification in the STIP. In nonattainment and maintenance areas, the FHWA and the FTA must make a conformity finding before inclusion. The department will notify the MPO and appropriate federal agencies when a TIP has been included in the STIP. If an MPO TIP is submitted to TxDOT for inclusion in the STIP after the STIP has been initially approved by the Texas Transportation Commission, the Executive Director may approve its inclusion.

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Rural TIP Inclusion

After approval by the Executive Director, rural TIPs will be included in the STIP, except in nonattainment and maintenance areas outside metropolitan planning areas, where federal findings of conformity must be made prior to placing projects in the STIP.

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Texas Administrative Code Rules

The Texas Administrative Code provides more details concerning requirements for the STIP. Guidance in 43 TAC §15.8 covers the STIP development process, the approval process, and the project selection procedures.

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