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We are excited to announce that the call for projects for the RTA  Access to Transit Program is now open. The RTA launched the Access to Transit program in 2012 to support small-scale capital projects that improve pedestrians’ and bicyclists’ access to public transportation. To address a frequent barrier to securing funding and completing projects, the 2020 Access to Transit Program will accept applications for micromobility projects such as bikeshare programs as well as Phase I engineering funding for high need communities.  A call for projects is held every other year for Access to Transit with the current application period from Friday, March 13 to Friday, May 8. We anticipate awarding projects by mid-summer of 2020.

The Access to Transit program leverages RTA and local funding with federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program (CMAQ) funding to help implement recommendations from planning studies completed through the RTA Community Planning program or Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) Local Technical Assistance (LTA) program. To date, Access to Transit has funded 28 projects in communities throughout the region for a total investment of roughly $13 million in federal, RTA and local funds. Detailed information on past projects is available on the RTA data website,

Investing in pedestrian and bicycling infrastructure near transit provides several benefits for both local communities and the RTA system, such as:

  • Increased transit ridership, which helps reduce congestion and vehicle emissions
  • Better first and last mile connections that make it safer and easier for riders to get to and from transit service
  • Lower demand for commuter parking
  • Pedestrian friendly neighborhoods that promote public health through active transportation

The Access to Transit program is open to municipalities and counties that have completed, or are in the process of completing, a planning or implementation project through either the RTA’s Community Planning program or the CMAP LTA Program. The plans should specifically recommend bicycle and/or pedestrian access improvements to transit.  This includes communities that have participated in corridor studies as a partner with RTA and/or CMAP. Applicants must have CTA, Metra or Pace service in their community and be located within the RTA’s six-county service area (Cook, DuPage, Lake, McHenry, Kane, Will).

An informational webinar will be held at 10:00 a.m. on March 23; click here to RSVP and learn more about the program and process. Please direct any questions to Michael Horsting at

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Read posts about how the RTA collaborates with CTA, Metra and Pace to plan, invest in and move the Chicago region’s transit system.

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