Contact Contact

RTA accepting applications for Community Planning program

January 20, 2021

Call For Projects Banner resized 730x250

Joint Call for Planning Assistance open through Wednesday, February 3

The RTA is partnering with the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) to issue a joint Call for Planning Assistance for high and very high need communities.

Since 1998, the RTA has offered technical assistance to municipalities in the Chicago region to address local planning needs at the intersection of public transportation and land use. That assistance has translated into $23 million invested in more than 200 projects across six counties. Read the most recent Community Planning Implementation Report to learn more about the program’s impact.

CMAP and the RTA have separate technical assistance programs, but applicants simply need to apply once. The online application is available through Wednesday, February 3.

Every community in the region has felt the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, and municipal budgets are strained now more than ever. In light of these challenges, the RTA is committed to offering support for communities that need it most. The RTA will accept applications in four different categories, described below. Learn more about the types of projects and timeline for applications on the RTA website.

High and very high need communities are defined based on four factors: population, median household income, tax base per capita, and percent of population located in an economically disconnected or disinvested area. Read more about the methodology for determining community cohorts in a CMAP Policy Brief.


  • Active Mobility and Curb Management Plans: The RTA will assist municipalities in planning for balancing the needs of increased deliveries, personal mobility, gathering space, bicycle and pedestrian areas, parking, and more along roadways in a particular community, all while preserving and protecting the use of transit.
  • Developer Discussion Panels: Both CMAP and RTA will facilitate panels of developers that will meet with communities to outline needs, goals, and incentives early in the redevelopment of a particular parcel to offer potential strategies and provide a realistic outlook for the future.
  • Special Funding Districts: The RTA will help municipalities with planning for an economic development funding district such as a Tax Increment Financing (TIF) district, Special Service Area (SSA), or Business Improvement District (BID) by assessing the community’s needs, identifying the potential district, and supporting the process to propose and enact such a district.
  • TOD Zoning Code Updates: The RTA will work with local government staff to create development standards and review processes that make investment in the community more attractive to potential developers, business owners, and residents seeking to improve their property. Zoning updates can be completed for an entire municipality, sub-area, for a specific TOD area, or for a specific section of the ordinance.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

* indicates required
Type your email address here
What emails would you like to receive from the RTA
Tagged in: Community Planning

Related Articles

22 RTA 1396 Join the RTA Transit is the Answer Coalition to discuss possible reforms to improve service and accountability for riders

Following the introduction of legislation that proposes changes to how the Chicago region’s transit agencies are organized, the RTA continues to lead convers...

July 15, 2024
Image 22 RTA0717min RTA releases new fare equity report, recommending fully funding and expanding reduced fare programs

A new report released by the RTA in July, Building a More Equitable Fare Structure for Public Transit in the Chicago Region, recommends that the state legisl...

July 11, 2024
221107 RTA 1617 Homewood, Richton Park adopt transit-oriented development plans funded through RTA Community Planning program

This spring, transit-oriented development (TOD) plans were adopted by the villages of Homewood and Richton Park that will make these communities more transit...

July 11, 2024
A crowd of people waits on the Cermak-Chinatown Red Line CTA platform as a train approaches. Good news: Regional transit ridership reaches new high as CTA, Metra, and Pace increase service, offer new fare products

Ridership across Chicago’s transit system has continued to increase, with May 2024 seeing the highest ridership levels since 2019 for CTA, Metra, and Pace. T...

June 28, 2024
22 RTA 1518 2 Legislative Update: Lawmakers pass state budget, action on transit funding still needed ahead of fiscal cliff

The Illinois General Assembly adjourned this year’s spring legislative session after passing an overall $53.1 billion budget for State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2025...

June 27, 2024
Graphic that says "Transportation Tuesday, attend a four-part webinar series #TransportationTuesday" Read recaps and watch recordings of the RTA's four-part Transportation Tuesday webinar series

The RTA brought back Transportation Tuesday, its popular four-part webinar series each Tuesday May 28–June 18 from noon to 1:30 p.m. The free, virtual sessio...

June 25, 2024
RTA
CTA
Metra
Pace
Copyright © 2024 Regional Transportation Authority. All Rights Reserved.