IDEA: Innovative Deployments to Enhance Arterials | Operate + Coordinate | Our Work

IDEA: Innovative Deployments to Enhance Arterials

$13 million Challenge Grant Program
Monday, August 21, 2017

MTC invites eligible Bay Area public agencies to submit applications for consideration under a new regional initiative called “Innovative Deployments to Enhance Arterials” (IDEA). The new grant program aims to use $13 million in federal funds to help cities, counties and transit agencies improve the operation of major arterial roadways and to make these roadways more ready for connected and automated vehicle technologies.

The Bay Area has over 33,000 directional miles of arterials and local streets, and approximately 11,000 traffic signals. Many of the region’s major arterials carry heavy traffic and experience significant congestion during weekday peak periods. This can lead to loss of productive time, unreliable travel for cars and buses, and increased safety issues for bicyclists and pedestrians.

IDEA is designed to help cities, counties and transit agencies deploy advanced technologies to enhance mobility, sustainability and safety along major arterials. Public agencies may opt to deploy mature, commercially-available technologies on their own or integrated with newer, higher-risk connected and automated vehicle technologies. Agencies also may choose to support regional readiness for future connected/automated vehicle on arterials by deploying pilot concept projects using cutting-edge connected/automated vehicle technologies.

Grant funds will be directed towards two categories of projects: Category 1 projects deploy mature, commercially-available advanced technologies. Category 2 projects deploy connected/automated vehicle technologies.

Federal funds available through IDEA are designed to assist agencies with project implementation through capital support and consultant technical assistance. Services to be performed by the consultants will be defined by MTC, in coordination with the grant recipients.

Check this page regularly for updates. An IDEA grant application and a corridor information spreadsheet can be found in the Related Documents section on this page.

Regional Workshops
MTC will be hosting the following five workshops to provide prospective applicants with an overview of the IDEA Challenge Grant Program and to answer any questions applicants may have. Workshops that will primarily focus on Category 2 project applications will be held in September.

  • Workshop #1
    Monday, August 21, 2017

    2:00pm to 4:00pm
    Alameda County Transportation Commission (ACTC)
    Room B and Room C
    1111 Broadway, Suite 800 Oakland, CA 94607
  • Workshop #2
    Wednesday, August 23, 2017

    10:00am to 12:00pm
    Sonoma County Transportation Authority (SCTA)
    SCTA Large Conference Room
    490 Mendocino Ave #206 Santa Rosa, CA 95401
    Presentation (Note: Same presentation as Workshop #1, except Slide 8 added)
  • Workshop #3
    Wednesday, August 23, 2017

    2:00pm to 4:00pm
    San Mateo County Transit District (SamTrans)
    2nd floor Auditorium
    1250 San Carlos Avenue San Carlos, CA 94070
    Presentation (Note: Same presentation as Workshop #2)

Questions & Answers from IDEA Workshops #1 through #3​
(Note: Some answers contained in this Q&A document may differ slightly from what was stated at the workshops. The answers in this Q&A document supersede those from the workshop.)

  • Workshop #4 (specific to Category 2)
    Thursday, September 7, 2017

    1:00pm to 3:00pm
    Contra Costa Transportation Authority (CCTA)
    2999 Oak Road, Suite 110 Walnut Creek, CA 94597
  • Workshop #5 (specific to Category 2)
    Tuesday, September 12, 2017

    1:00pm to 3:00pm
    Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA)
    Auditorium, Building A
    3331 N. First St San Jose, CA 95134

Questions & Answers from IDEA Workshops #4 through #5

The IDEA program's main goals are to:

  • Speed travel times and improve travel-time reliability on major arterials
  • Improve safety for drivers, transit riders, bicyclists and pedestrians
  • Reduce vehicle emissions and fuel consumption
  • Advance public agencies' proficiency in the use of advanced technologies for arterial operations

Please click here for complete IDEA program guidelines

The IDEA grant program can be used to fund:

  • Traffic signal system improvements
  • Bicycle and pedestrian improvements
  • Transit improvements
  • Other projects

Please click here for more information about IDEA project eligibility