The State Transportation Investments law established the Strategic Mobility Formula, which allows the N.C.
Department of Transportation to more efficiently invest its transportation
dollars by using a data-driven scoring process along with local input.
For example, the 2016-2025 State Transportation
Improvement Plan – the first developed with the Strategic Mobility Formula –
consisted of 1,073 projects distributed over all 100 counties and across all modes of
transportation and supported about 300,000 jobs.
That's 300 more projects (a 273 percent increase)
and 126,000 more jobs (a 172 percent increase) than the old funding
formula, which distributed money equally across the state, would have allowed.
As outlined in the following table, the Strategic Mobility Formula funds projects in three categories: Division Needs, Regional Impact and Statewide Mobility.
|Division Needs||30 percent||Revenue in this category is shared equally over NCDOT's 14 transportation divisions. Project scores are based 50 percent on data and 50 percent on rankings by local planning organizations and the NCDOT transportation divisions.|
|Regional Impact||30 percent||Projects on this level compete within regions made up of two NCDOT transportation divisions, with funding based on population. Data makes up 70 percent of the project scores in this category. Local rankings account for the remaining 30 percent.|
|Statewide Mobility||40 percent||Projects in this category are based 100 percent on data.|
Statewide Mobility projects are analyzed separately in the Regional Impact and Division Needs categories and can be funded under those categories if they are not funded in the Statewide Mobility category. Regional Impact projects can cascade down to the Division Needs category.
A project's benefit/cost can improve when it is funded during the project submission phase through local entity contributions or tolling approved by the local planning organization. In addition, any area contributing to a highway project – and thereby reducing the cost to NCDOT – can receive back up to 50 percent of the funding for a subsequent project scored through STI (this is known as Bonus Allocation).
To provide more flexibility, the STI law allows regions and divisions to agree to alternate criteria weights tailored to their individual needs. The metropolitan planning organizations and rural planning organizations and the NCDOT divisions within the region must unanimously agree on the weights.