top of page
Image by Patrick Tomasso

Rural Transportation
 
Planning

Rural Transportation Planning Services are also provided through this division. Our staff provides support services for the Lumber River Rural Transportation Planning Organization (RPO). Work includes assistance to local governments and citizens in partnership with the NC Department of Transportation efforts in the LRCOG region.

Lumber River RPO

 

Since 2002, the Lumber River Rural Transportation Planning Organization (RPO) has been working cooperatively with the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) to enhance transportation planning opportunities in Richmond and Scotland Counties and rural portions of Hoke and Robeson Counties (see map below).  The eighteen RPOs across North Carolina are voluntary associations of local elected officials and citizens working in partnership with NCDOT.  This structure provides local officials in rural areas of the State with a formal framework to participate in statewide and regional transportation planning processes. 

 

The Major Duties and Responsibilities of the Lumber River RPO are:

  • Developing long-range transportation plans for the region in cooperation with local governments and NCDOT

  • Developing and prioritizing projects for inclusion in the State Transportation Improvement Program*

  • Providing transportation related information and data to local governments, citizens, and other interested parties

  • Providing a forum for public involvement in the rural transportation planning process

 

These responsibilities and related projects and tasks are accomplished through the work of the Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC) and the Transportation Coordinating Committee (TCC). The LRCOG is the Lead Planning Agency for the RPO, providing staff support from the Local Government Services Division.

Lumber River RPO.jpg

Transportation Committees

 

Transportation Advisory Committee

The Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC) is the governing policy board for the Lumber River RPO. The TAC provides policy direction for the planning process, facilitates communication and coordination among the member jurisdictions, and guides the development of a comprehensive multi-modal transportation program. Its membership includes local elected officials and the area's representative on the NCDOT Board of Transportation. The TAC meets the fourth Monday of odd numbered months at 12 o'clock noon. The meetings are usually held at the LRCOG offices.

Transportation Coordinating Committee

The Transportation Coordinating Committee's (TCC) role is to support and advise the Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC) in carrying out the four core responsibilities of the RPO by providing technical assistance and recommendations to the TAC. The TCC is comprised of staff from member local governments and the NCDOT, as well as local citizens and members of other local agencies interested in the transportation planning process. The TCC meets on the second Tuesday of odd numbered months at 10:30am. The meetings are usually held at the LRCOG Offices.

*PROJECT PRIORTIZATION PROCESS INFORMATION

The Lumber River RPO (LRRPO), along with the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT), continually goes through the process to identify and prioritize transportation projects for inclusion in the state’s next Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP).

This website page has been established to serve as a resource and repository of information on this project prioritization and funding process within the LRRPO region. As information becomes available throughout this process, it will be added to this site to make the information widely available to the public. If you have any questions about the information on this site, please contact Janet Robertson at 910-775-9749 or jfr@lrcog.org.

​We welcome your comments and feedback on the prioritization of transportation projects. Please feel free to attend any of our meetings, which are all open to the public, or to write/call us. We have a time for public comment at the beginning of each TCC and TAC meeting. You may reach RPO staff by email at jfr@lrcog.org or by phone at (910) 775-9749. You may also send written correspondence to: Lumber River Council of Governments, Attn. Janet Robertson, 30 C.J. Walker Rd, COMtech Park, Pembroke, NC, 28372.

 

Strategic Transportation Investments Law (STI) 

In 2013, the North Carolina General Assembly enacted House Bill 817, the Strategic Transportation Investments (STI) law, which represents a fundamental change in the way transportation projects are prioritized and funded in North Carolina. For more information on STI, please visit the NCDOT’s STI website:

https://www.ncdot.gov/initiatives-policies/Transportation/stip/Pages/strategic-transportation-investments.aspx

For the list of the final Local Input Points assignment for projects prioritized by the LRRPO in the last prioritization process (known as P5.0), please  click here for Regional impact projects, here for Division Needs projects.

PROJECT PRIORITIZATION PROCESS INFORMATION

2024-2033 STIP Development

 

Due to rising costs for projects funded in the previously adopted 2020-2029 STIP, little to no funding was projected to be available for new projects in the 2024-2033 STIP timeframe. 

 

Therefore, in August 2021, a workgroup recommended and the N.C. Board of Transportation approved the Prioritization 6.0 (P6) cycle be halted. The decision was made to develop the 2024-2033 STIP using existing projects from the previously adopted 2020-2029 STIP.  

 

The conclusion of the P6 cycle was the release of the quantitative scores and the local input point procedure was halted. The workgroup was reconvened to finalize the methodology and procedures used for this one-time STIP development exception, and the Board of Transportation approved the process. Projects with current construction schedules in the first three years of the STIP (2024-2027), projects with right of way actively underway, and those with federal grants were funded first; followed by a seniority approach of combined factors such as oldest prioritization cycle and highest scoring projects. There were no newly submitted projects from the P6.0 prioritization cycle included in the 2024-2033 STIP.

 

The initial 2024-2033 Draft STIP was released in April 2022. Fortunately, during the summer 2022 legislative session, the Department received additional revenues through sales tax. A revised 2024-2033 Draft STIP was released in August of 2022 followed by a public comment period in fall 2022.

 

Additionally, after the release of the August 2022 revised draft, there was coordination between NCDOT and the MPO/RPO partners to do schedule swaps if feasible and desired. NCDOT Division Offices held weeklong open houses between September and October 2022 to receive public input.   

2024-2033 STIP Approval

 

​The N.C. Board of Transportation adopted the 2024-2033 STIP at its June 2023 meeting. NCDOT is awaiting final approval of the STIP by the Federal Highway Administration, which is anticipated by the end of September 2023. Please Click Here to see the 2024-2033 Final STIP for the whole State. Click here to see the Lumber River RPO portion of the 2024-2033 STIP.

 

Prioritization Process for the 2026-2035 STIP

 

The process to develop the next STIP (2026-2035) is known as Prioritization 7.0 or P7. Please Click Here for the P7 Schedule.

 

In May 2023, the Lumber River RPO held public meetings in each County to solicit potential projects to be submitted to NCDOT for consideration in P7. Over the Summer and Fall, the TCC and TAC reviewed and approved the projects and Staff gathered required data. Please Click Here to view the list of projects that was submitted to NCDOT in October 2023.
 

Please Click Here for the RPO’s Methodology for assigning Local Public Input Points, which was approved by the TAC on March 25, 2024

 

The NCDOT released the P7 Quantitative Scores for all projects on May 24, 2024.  Lists of projects with scores in the Lumber River RPO have been separated by County with Statewide Mobility and Regional Impact projects listed first, followed by Division Needs projects.  For Hoke County scores, please Click Here.  For Richmond County scores, please Click Here.  For Robeson County Scores, please Click Here.  For Scotland County Scores, please Click Here.

 

A Public Meeting will be held in each County for the purpose of prioritizing each County’s projects according to the Methodology. Please Click Here for the list of meeting dates and locations.  Each County’s prioritized list will be posted on this website after the meetings.

 

Public comments can be mailed to Janet Robertson, LRCOG, 30 CJ Walker Rd, Pembroke, NC, 28372  or emailed to janet.robertson@lrcog.org.

 

The RPO staff will compile the total scores for all projects in the RPO in accordance with the procedures laid out in the Methodology.  The Preliminary Ranked list of projects will be posted on this website.  At its July 9, 2024 meeting, the TCC will make a recommendation of the Regional Impact category points assignment to the TAC.  The TCC recommendation will be posted on this website along with the advertisement of a public comment period of two weeks.  Submitted comments will be compiled and given to the TAC.  A Public Meeting will be held at the beginning of the TAC meeting on August 5, 2024 to receive public comment. The TAC will make its final Regional Impact category points assignment in accordance with the Methodology.

 

Public comments can be mailed to Janet Robertson, LRCOG, 30 CJ Walker Rd, Pembroke, NC, 28372  or emailed to janet.robertson@lrcog.org.

 

The Final Regional Impact category points assignments will be entered into SPOT On!ine and posted on this website.

 

After the SPOT office programs Regional Impact projects, RPO staff will determine whether any Lumber River projects were funded in the Regional Impact category.  Staff will calculate the Lumber River Total scores for all projects eligible to be funded in the Division Needs category and compile the Preliminary Ranked list.  The list will be posted on this website.

 

At its October 15, 2024 meeting, the TCC will make a recommendation of Division Needs category points assignment to the TAC.  The recommendation will be posted on this website.  A Public Meeting will be held at the beginning of the TAC meeting on November 4, 2024.  The TAC will make its final Division Needs category points assignment in accordance with the Methodology.

 

Public comments can be mailed to Janet Robertson, LRCOG, 30 CJ Walker Rd, Pembroke, NC, 28372  or emailed to janet.robertson@lrcog.org.

 

The Final Division Needs category points assignment will be entered into SPOT Online and posted to this website.

 

NCDOT will release the Draft 2026-2035 STIP in January 2025.

Public comments can be mailed to Janet Robertson, LRCOG, 30 CJ Walker Rd, Pembroke, NC, 28372  or emailed to janet.robertson@lrcog.org.

I-73/74 Corridor in the Lumber River RPO

Resources

For More information:

Lumber River Council of Governments

Lumber River RPO

Janet Robertson

RPO Coordinator

(910) 775-9749

janet.robertson@lrcog.org

bottom of page