• Transportation Division

    Congestion Mitigation/Air Quality (CMAQ) Program

    Shadows of Transit Shelters at a Park & Ride Lot in Atlanta, Georgia

    2017 Indiana CMAQ Eligibility Application
    Posted 11/18/16, PDF, 684 KB

    Note: PDF files require Adobe Acrobat Reader. The latest version may be downloaded for free from www.adobe.com

    The CMAQ program was created under the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA) of 1991, continued under the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21), reauthorized by the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU), and Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21). 

    The purpose of the CMAQ program is to fund transportation projects or programs that will contribute to attainment or maintenance of the national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) for ozone, carbon monoxide (CO), and particulate matter (PM).  The CMAQ program supports two important goals of the Department of Transportation: improving air quality and relieving congestion. 


    The Use of CMAQ Funds under MAP-21

    Funds may be used for transportation projects likely to contribute to the attainment or maintenance of a national ambient air quality standard, with a high level of effectiveness in reducing air pollution. 

    Some specific eligible activities are described below:

    •Establishment or operation of a traffic monitoring, management, and control facility, including advanced truck stop electrification systems, if it contributes to attainment of an air quality standard.

    •Projects that improve traffic flow, including projects to improve signalization, construct HOV lanes, improve intersections, add turning lanes, improve transportation systems management and operations that mitigate congestion and improve air quality, and implement ITS and other CMAQ-eligible projects, including projects to improve incident and emergency response or improve mobility, such as real-time traffic, transit, and multi-modal traveler information.

    •Purchase of integrated, inter-operable emergency communications equipment.

    •Projects that shift traffic demand to non-peak hours or other transportation modes, increase vehicle occupancy rates, or otherwise reduce demand.

    •Purchase of diesel retrofits or conduct of related outreach activities.

    •Facilities serving electric or natural gas-fueled vehicles (except where this conflicts with prohibition on rest area commercialization) are explicitly eligible.

    •Some expanded authority to use funds for transit operations.

    Geographic Area Eligible to Use CMAQ Funds

    Eligible Areas: CMAQ funds may be invested in all 8-hour ozone, CO, and PM non-attainment and maintenance areas. Funds also may be spent in the few remaining one-hour ozone maintenance areas (these counties also have Early Action Compacts in place), since the one-hour standard remains in effect for these areas. 

    Funds also may be used for projects in proximity to non-attainment and maintenance areas if the benefits will be realized primarily within the non-attainment or maintenance area. The delineation of an area considered “in proximity” should be discussed with the FHWA and FTA field offices and elevated to headquarters if necessary.

    Maintenance Areas: CMAQ funds may be invested in maintenance areas that have approved maintenance plans under CAA section 175A. In States with ozone or CO maintenance areas but no non-attainment areas, it is mandatory CMAQ funds be used in the maintenance areas.

    Project Selection Process - General Conditions

    Proposals for CMAQ funding should include a precise description of the project, providing information on its size, scope, location, and timetable. Also, an assessment of the project’s expected emission reduction benefits is required prior to project selection to better inform the selection of CMAQ projects (See Below).

    Quantitative Analysis - Quantified emissions benefits (i.e., emissions reductions) and disbenefits (i.e., emissions increases) should be included in all project proposals, except where it is not possible to quantify emissions benefits (see Qualitative Assessment, below). Benefits and disbenefits should be included for all pollutants for which the area is in nonattainment or maintenance status. Benefits should be listed in a consistent fashion (i.e., kg/day) across projects to allow accurate comparison during the project selection process.

    State and local transportation and air quality agencies conduct CMAQ-project air quality analyses with different approaches, analytical capabilities, and technical expertise. The SAFETEA-LU encourages State DOTs and MPOs to consult with State and local air quality agencies about the estimated emission reductions from CMAQ proposals. However, while no single method is specified, every effort must be taken to ensure that determinations of air quality benefits are credible and based on a reproducible and logical analytical procedure

    Qualitative Assessment - Although quantitative analysis of air quality impacts is required for almost all project types, an exception to this requirement will be made when it is not possible to accurately quantify emissions benefits. In these cases, a qualitative assessment based on a reasoned and logical determination that the project or program will decrease emissions and contribute to attainment or maintenance of a NAAQS is acceptable.

    Public education, marketing, and other outreach efforts, which can include advertising alternatives to SOV travel, employer outreach, and public education campaigns, may fall into this category. The primary benefit of these activities is enhanced communication and outreach that is expected to influence travel behavior, and thus air quality.

    Grouped Projects Analysis - In some situations, it may be more appropriate to examine the impacts of comprehensive strategies to improve air quality by grouping projects. For example, transit improvements coupled with demand management to reduce SOV use in a corridor might best be analyzed together. Other examples include linked signalization projects, transit improvements, marketing and outreach programs, and ridesharing programs that affect an entire region or corridor.

    Tradeoffs - As noted above, emissions benefits should be calculated for all pollutants for which an area is in nonattainment or maintenance status. Some potential projects may lead to benefits for one pollutant and increased emissions for another, especially when the balance involves precursors such as NOx and VOC.  

    For additional information concerning the CMAQ process at KIPDA, please contact:

    Nick Vail, Transportation Planner
    KIPDA
    11520 Commonwealth Drive
    Louisville, Kentucky 40299
    502-266-6144 Ext. 114

    Additional information concerning the CMAQ Program: http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/environment/air_quality/cmaq/

     



     
     
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