Development Program

Pursuant to federal requirements, CDOT develops a four-year Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP) and a long-range (minimum 20-year time horizon) Statewide Transportation Plan (SWP). While extensive investment needs are identified through the transportation planning process, the STIP captures only those project needs that can be funded with expected revenues over the next four years. The SWP integrates Colorado's 15 long-range regional transportation plans (RTPs) and provides a longer-term view. The RTPs identify each regions' long-range investment priorities at varying levels of detail. For example, while some identify specific regionally significant projects, others prioritize corridors and identify only general types of improvements needed. The purpose of the development program is to bridge the gap between the four-year STIP and the 20+ year SWP, by capturing the major investment needs and priorities identified in the planning processes over a longer timeframe

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The development program is a part of the transportation-planning process focused on identifying major investment needs and establishing priorities with planning partners to support the long-term development of the state transportation system. It includes two key components: the Development Program Inventory of Major Investment Needs; and the 10-Year Development Program Plan.

The Development Program Inventory of Major Investment Needs is developed first, through a statewide inventory of needs documented in planning and development studies, including regional transportation Pplans (RTPs) and through additional input from CDOT staff and planning partners. 

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The Development Program Inventory of Major Investment Needs was developed n winter 2016 based on the regional transportation plans (RTPs), and other plans and existing project lists, with additional updates in spring 2017. The most current Development Program Inventory includes roughly 125 highway projects representing more than $9 billion in funding need. Additional transit, bicycle and pedestrian, operations and other transportation investment needs will be incorporated in the future.

The inventory is not intended to capture every potential project identified to date; it's intended to capture highway projects defined as major" by each CDOT region, and major investment needs for transit, bicycle/pedestrian, and operations. Typically these “major” investment needs are projects that are unlikely to be funded to completion through traditional funding sources, and will require some other funding sources, such as a new revenue source or discretionary grant funding to make significant progress toward completion.

The focus on "major" investment needs means that a large number of smaller projects are not included. While some of these smaller projects can be funded through existing funding sources, many others cannot. As such, this inventory is only a partial picture of significant unmet transportation needs. Additionally, the inventory only includes projects that would be funded with revenues flowing through CDOT, if sufficient revenue were available. It does not include projects that are anticipated to be funded primarily with local, regional (i.e. MPO or transit agency directed) or private funding. 

The 10-Year Development Program Plan is a smaller subset of the Development Program Inventory of Major Investment Needs, identifying those major investment needs that are a higher priority over the next 10 years. As originally developed, the 10-Year Development Program Plan focused on highway projects and included roughly 70 projects totaling $2.5 billion.

The 10-Year Development Program Plan is currently being updated to reflect updated scope, schedule, and cost information and to incorporate transit, bicycle and pedestrian, and operations projects and programs.

The development program is currently being updated, with an updated iteration to be complete in 2018. This update will:

  • Incorporate updated scope, schedule, and cost information.
  • Incorporate additional projects not identified in the original development program.
  • Remove projects that have since been completed or for which funding has since been identified.
  • Incorporate additional priorities for transit, bike/ped, asset management and operations.

With the next long-range plan cycle, the Inventory of Major Investment Needs and 10-Year Development Program Plan will be updated/developed in tandem with the traditional planning process, including the development of the Statewide Transportation Plan (SWP), RTPs, and Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP).

With the next long-range plan cycle, the inventory of major investment needs and 10-Year Development Program will be updated/developed in tandem with the traditional planning process, including the development of the Statewide Transportation Plan (SWP), RTPs, and Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP).


The Division of Transit & Rail (DTR) is in the process of assessing three separate components of Transit needs in Colorado, including Operational needs, Asset Management needs, and Capital expansion needs. The Transit Development Program (TDP) identifies capital projects only, including Facilities, Infrastructure, Equipment, Service Expansions or Capital Planning projects. It does not include Asset Management needs such as vehicle replacements, nor does it identify all Operational needs. It does capture the operational needs associated with those capital projects in the TDP, however. Initial information included in the Transit Development Program was based primarily on the Statewide Transit Plan, Regional Transit Plans, Local Plans and any current transit studies. Outreach efforts are currently underway with TPRs and MPOs to identify capital projects to be included in the Transit Development Program, and to develop each region’s Tier 1 priority subset of those projects.

Intercity Rail

A separate Intercity Rail Development Program is also being developed by the Division of Transit & Rail to identify capital rail projects for intercity needs. This would include such projects as the Advanced Guideway Systems (AGS) conceived along the I-70 corridor, the Intercity Commuter System (ICS) conceived along the Front Range, or the Southwest Chief passenger rail projects identified in Southern Colorado. It does not include local and regional transit “rail” projects such as the Denver Area’s FasTracks projects, which are included in the Transit Development Program, above.

Bicycle and Pedestrian

CDOT is currently conducting a statewide inventory of bicycle and pedestrian assets on or adjacent to the state highway system, making additional investments in the non-motorized counting program to improve data on the use of these assets. Additionally, an effort is underway to identify high priority bicycle corridors on the state highway system. These efforts will provide the foundation for the identification of major bicycle and pedestrian investment needs to be incorporated into the Development Program.

Many of the already-identified highway and transit projects include bicycle and pedestrian elements. If and when projects identified in the inventory move forward, they will be subject to the provisions of CDOT's recently updated Bicycle and Pedestrian Policy Directive, which states "“"...the Department shall include the needs of bicyclists and pedestrians in the planning, design, operation and maintenance of transportation facilities as a necessary component of all programs and activities.

The Development Program Inventory of Major Investments and the subset 10-Year Development Program Plan are tools to track needs and support planning and project selection processes, including the development of the federally required four-year program of projects, the Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP), and the identification of priorities for different funding opportunities, including Senate Bill 09-228, Senate Bill 16-267, the new National Highway Freight Program (formula freight program), discretionary grant programs, innovative financing, and new/additional revenue.

Funding Opportunities

The Development Program Inventory is "living" and can be updated as needed. An updated inventory will be published quarterly. A process and timeline will be developed for updating the 10-Year Development Program, which will likely include an annual update process aligned with the 4P and Annual STIP update process.

No. Most projects included in the STIP are smaller in nature, and not likely to be identified in the development program (for example, a surface treatment project). In most cases, a major investment need being added in the STIP will already be identified in the Development Program as it is likely a known priority. If it is not it can be added to the development program according to the update process/timeline described above. 

Current versions/documents

Supporting documents

Prior versions/documents

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