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Public Involvement in the MIC's Plans and Studies
Active citizen participation throughout the planning process leads to more creative solutions and better decision making. We at the MIC strive to become more visible and to involve more people and organizations in our transportation planning work for the Duluth- Superior area.

The MIC's Public Involvement Plan
We have recently updated our Public Involvement Plan to better describe the steps we take and the tools we use to facilitate two-way communication while our plans and studies are underway.

An important goal has been to make this plan as user-friendly as possible, in order to encourage participation in the MIC’s planning activities and to broaden the range of voices and views expressed. With this in mind, take a look at our updated 2013 Public Involvement Plan. We hope you will find it lives up to this objective.

Connect With Us!
Let us know if you have any comments or suggestions to improve our public participation efforts.

Email and Direct Mail
Any person or organization can receive ongoing communications about the MIC's planning efforts. Add your contact information (name and email address) to our distribution lists by sending us an email or by calling 218-529-7511.

OpenMIC Blog
The MIC’s staff-produced OpenMIC blog provides project updates and serves as a forum for discussion about transportation and planning in the Duluth-Superior area.

We regularly post photos, meeting info and event notices on our Facebook page.

Proposed Revisions to the Public Involvement Plan
December 2014
We are interested to know your thoughts about the changes we are proposing to our 2013 Public Involvement Plan.

As described above, the MIC's Public Involvement Plan (PIP) spells out our process for obtaining public input as an integral part of the transportation planning process. Recently we put these procedures to the test, during the development of our Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP). We noted several edits, deletions and additions to be incorporated into the 2013 PIP document as approved revisions.

These revisions were described and discussed in detail at the December TAC and MIC meetings. Based on those discussions, as well as the public comments we’ve received to date, here are the REVISED edits to the PIP that staff will be recommending for approval in February.

1. Delete all references to air quality consultations

Why is this being proposed?
As of late 2014, Duluth has received an ‘Attainment’ area for air quality; therefore federal ‘conformity consultation’ requirements no longer apply. (see pages 7, 29, 33, 50)

2. Discontinue the step of placing hard copies of the Draft and Final TIPs and LRTPs at area libraries for review.

Why is this being proposed?
Placing hard copies at the libraries was a method of distribution that predated the 2005 SAFETEA-LU mandate to utilize electronic and online channels (e.g., CDs, websites and email) to deliver plans and planning process information. At that time the MIC switched from producing printed versions to formatting our plans as PDFs designed to be viewed online, as well as developing online-only visualization features such as interactive mapping. (see pages 29, 30, 33, 40, 41)

3. Add the following language for members of the public who wish to give comments at regularly scheduled meetings of the Policy Board, TAC, HTAC and BPAC:

Speaker Rules – for commenting at MIC Policy Board, TAC, HTAC and BPAC meetings (see page 11)
• Give your name and affiliation (if any)
• Comment Time Limit: 3 minutes*
• Limit your remarks to the specific plan, study or document under consideration by the Board
• Be respectful in dialogue
*The Chair, with committee approval, has the option of extending or closing the public comment period, depending on the number of people who wish to speak and the length of the meeting agenda

Why is this being proposed?
The point of the speaker rules is to ensure that all people who show have the opportunity to have their say. The 3-minute time limit is consistent with Duluth City Council and St. Louis County Commission rules. Some flexibility in the amount of time for each speaker is allowed.

Let us know what you think
Public comments about the proposed changes may be made from December 14, 2014 through January 30, 2015, by contacting Rondi Watson at (218) 529-7511 or by email .

Comments are also welcomed in person at the MIC Policy Board meeting on Wed, February 18, 2015, at 7pm at the Hermantown Dept. of Public Safety Training Center, 5111 Maple Grove Road, Hermantown, MN. The proposed revisions will be presented for a vote at this time, along with a summary of all comments received during the public comment period.

Background – 2013 PIP Update
Photo of group map exercise for the MIC's UMD Small Area Plan The MIC’s Public Involvement Plan was updated in 2013 to better define opportunities for public involvement at each phase of the planning process, include current MIC practices and technologies and ensure compliance with MAP-21 and other federal transportation and metropolitan planning requirements.

Process for Updating the PIP
This update of the PIP identified three primary stakeholders for this document: members of the public – the people who live and work in the Duluth-Superior area as well as representatives local jurisdictions and organizations from whom we are seeking input; the MIC’s planning staff whose job it is to conduct transportation planning studies and to get that input; and the federal and state agencies to which we are accountable.

How Was the Public Involved in this Update?
Online Survey
MIC stakeholders and members of the public were invited to provide input about their preferences for giving input and receiving input about the MIC's planning initiatives by taking the online survey.

Feb – Sept, 2013:
Six presentations about the PIP update were given in 2013 at regularly scheduled MIC, TAC, BPAC and HTAC meetings between February and September.
A presentation was also made to the ARDC Board and Commission at its meeting in August. All included requests for comment and input.
Two staff meetings were held to review the planning process and specific information in the Staff Guide section of the draft PIP.

Focus on Transportation Newsletter

An article titled “Public Involvement – How Do YOU Connect?” was featured in the Spring 2013 edition of the MIC’s Focus on Transportation newsletter, describing the project and inviting readers to take the online survey.

Consultations with State and Federal Agencies
July - Spetember, 2013:
Consultation about the status of the PIP Update was held with staff from MnDOT, WisDOT, FTA and FHWA at the MIC’s mid-year review on July 17, 2013.

Consultation about public involvement process for the Superior Area TIP was held by the MIC’s Deputy Director with staff from WisDOT and that information was relayed for inclusion in the Draft PIP.

Consultation about public involvement process for the Duluth Area TIP was held with MnDOT Central office and MnDOT District One staff for inclusion in the Draft PIP.

In-Person Interviews
In-person interviews were conducted with representatives from public agencies in this area who regularly need to engage the public as part of their work, with a focus on the manner in which the agency seeks to solicit input from traditionally underserved groups such as minority, elderly, low income and mobility limited people and households.

Legal Notice
September 1, 2013: A legal notice was posted in the Duluth News Tribune to mark the start of the 45-day public comment period.

OpenMIC Blog Post
The article “Public Involvement in Transportation Planning” was posted on the MIC’s blog site to briefly explain the PIP and to invite comments on the Draft plan.

Public Open House
October 9-10, 2013: A public open house to review the draft PIP will be held during work hours at the MIC office in downtown Duluth at 221 West First Street. Parking will be provided at the Holiday Center Ramp across the street.

For More Information
Contact Rondi Watson by phone at (218) 529-7511 or send a message by email.

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Current Planning Initiatives
Lincoln Park Multimodal Transportation Study

Duluth-Superior Port Land Use Plan- 2015 Update

Northwest Douglas County Freight Movement Study

4th Street Construction Project

Duluth 6th Avenue East Traffic Study

Bicycle Planning

Recent Plans and Studies
Connnections 2040: The Duluth-Superior Long Range Transportaton Plan

Grand Ave/State Hwy 23 Corridor Study

Superior South End Traffic Study

Intersection Control Evaluation (ICE) Study for the Duluth Area

Duluth-Superior Cruise Ship Terminal Study

DLH Air Service/Air Cargo Leakage & Expansion Analysis

Duluth Sidewalk Study

Duluth-Superior Metropolitan Bike Map

Central Entrance Corridor Study

Lincoln Park Pedestrian Plan

Transportation Systems Management (TSM)

N Minnesota/NW Wisconsin Freight Plan

UMD-CSS Transportation Study

East 2nd Street Corridor Study (Superior)

DTA Route Analysis for the City of Superior

Downtown Modal Connections Study

Proctor Comprehensive Plan Update 2008

Endion Land Use and Transportation Study

Safe Routes To School Funding Applications

Northwest Superior Traffic Circulation Plan

Proctor Master Trail Plan

Munger Trail to Lakewalk Connector

Erie Pier Management Plan

Duluth Heights Traffic Circulation Plan

MnDOT Functional Classification Update

Public Involvement Plan

Rice Lake Road Corridor & Traffic Impact Study

Duluth and Superior Safe Routes to School Plans

Duluth Urban Area Growth Impact Study

Human Services Coordinated Transit Plan