What is it?

The 2018-2023 Regional Transit Strategic Plan (the Strategic Plan) will provide a visionary roadmap for near-term transit investment in the RTA six-county area. Through the Strategic Plan, the Chicago region’s transit agencies – RTA, CTA, Metra and Pace – will join forces to talk about the capital investments that are needed over the next five years to deliver great public transportation in light of changing demographics, transportation, and technology. The Strategic Plan will serve as a guide to each of the transit agencies in planning and funding future projects as well as carrying out the unique day-to-day activities needed to meet passenger needs that vary widely across the large and diverse region.

Why do we need it?

The transit agencies are challenged by an old and aging transit system, limited funding, and a changing mobility landscape. The Strategic Plan provides an opportunity to talk about pressing issues and invite the transit agency Boards, stakeholders, staff, and the public to collaborate in developing shared priorities and solutions for the transit system. Further, the RTA is required to prepare and adopt a Strategic Plan every five years, as mandated by the 2008 RTA Act. The existing plan, the 2013-2018 Regional Transit Strategic Plan, is due to be replaced in 2018.

How do we do it?

The Strategic Plan development process started in 2016 with staff-led research and analysis. Throughout 2017, the RTA will be sharing the results of that work with stakeholders and asking for input on priorities and strategies. The draft Regional Transit Strategic Plan will be available for public comment in fall of 2017. Stay tuned for more information about opportunities to provide input by subscribing to the RTA Blog or e-mailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Conduct RESEARCH to develop a foundation for plan development


ENGAGE stakeholders and the public


ADOPT the 2018-2023 Regional Transit Strategic Plan

Throughout 2017, transit agency staff will also be collaborating with the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) as CMAP develops ON TO 2050, the next regional comprehensive plan that will cast a long-term vision for the region. The ON TO 2050 development process includes extensive public outreach and several workshops that will be used as a forum for collecting public input related to the transit system. See the CMAP website for a list of public events and opportunities to participate.

Current Activities

In May 2017, the RTA released Beginning the Discussion, a summary of challenges and opportunities facing the region’s transit system today. The work is based on staff-led research conducted last year and identifies several important priority areas that the Strategic Plan will address. Staff is now working with stakeholders to discuss these priorities, in order to begin developing goals and chart a course of action. To provide input on Beginning the Discussion or other strategic topics for the transit system, e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..