KIPDA Reference Guide

What is KIPDA?

KIPDA is the regional planning agency responsible for Louisville and surrounding areas. These agencies are called MPOs — Metropolitan Planning Organizations. By law, KIPDA receives a share of federal transportation dollars based on the population of our region. The funding for just about all of the federal transportation projects that happen in Louisville goes through KIPDA.

Two Plans: TIP and MTP

There are two transportation plans that KIPDA maintains for the Louisville region. One is the 5-year Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP). The other is a 20-year Metropolitan Transportation Plan (MTP). 


  • KIPDA is a conduit for federal funds
    • KYTC and INDOT receive >70% of federal funds
      • Within Kentucky, projects are scored according to the criteria set by SHIFT
    • TARC gets ~10%
    • That leaves ~20% for the TPC (Transportation Policy Committee)
    • These distribution numbers don’t apply to federal funds that are distributed through competitive grant applications (like TIGER, BUILD, RAISE, SS4A, etc.)
    • Any project that is awarded funds through KIPDA needs to be eligible in one of the available pools of funding:
      • Surface Transportation Block Grant (STBG): This large pool of federal funding has broad flexibility for a range of projects and modes and a portion of it is reserved for MPOs to distribute.  
      • Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP): TAP is a set-aside of the larger STBG program and is specifically dedicated to funding generally smaller scale active transportation projects – ped/bike, etc. A portion of this funding is also reserved for MPOs to distribute.     
      • Carbon Reduction Program (CRP): The CRP is a new federal funding program (created by 2021’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL)) to fund projects that contribute to lowering overall carbon emissions. A portion of the larger pool of funds is reserved for MPOs to distribute.
  • KYTC’s federal funds
  • Why is so much good stuff getting done in Southern Indiana?
    • In the early 2010s, INDOT transferred ownership of a number of state highways to Southern Indiana municipalities and counties
      • Agreement terms differed
      • This local control has made it easier for SoIn cities to get projects done
      • In the short term, this is a win; remains to be seen for the long-term
        • Future maintenance costs could negate the short-term benefits
    • Indiana state law requires that federal funds be used within a certain amount of time
      • This necessitates smaller projects that can be done relatively quickly
    • By contrast, in Kentucky, many of the major roads are state-owned and there is no time requirement for completion
      • Positive: this allows Kentucky cities to pursue federal funds for larger projects
      • Downside: no incentive to get the project done quickly
      • Utility companies are less cooperative in Kentucky
      • KYTC ownership adds an additional bureaucratic layer
    • The projects that Louisville has received KIPDA funds for are actually pretty good (e.g., two-way conversions in downtown and West Louisville); the City just has not been able to complete these projects due to administrative/bureaucratic difficulties
    • One specific hurdle: Louisville is getting bids for projects that greatly exceed their budgets

Reference Documents