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Connect 2050 Outreach

How We Connected

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Survey Results

Use the arrows to learn more about the specific topics related to each initial focus area.

On which goals should Connect 2050 focus?

Our survey asked respondents to allocate $100 among Connect 2050’s five initial transportation focus areas. This is how you chose to spend it:

QUALITY OF LIFE AND NATURAL ENVIRONMENT
$21.86
Economic Vitality
$20.97
Safety and Security
$20.30
System Integration and Connectivity
$18.74
System management
$18.14
Economic Vitality tabQuality of Life and Natural Environment tabSafety and Security tabSystem Integration and Connectivity tabSystem Management tabFunding and Project Costs tab
Survey Results tab
The Goal
Economic Vitality

Maintain and improve the state’s transportation system so it is responsive to global and regional economic needs and changing conditions

Highest Rated Topics for this Goal
Highest rated topic across all goals = Top priority for All
Roads in good condition
2.8
Affordable local transport options
2.3
Protect environment
reduce fossil fuel
2.3
Robust freight supply chain
2.2
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High
Quality of Life and Natural Environment tabSafety and Security tabSystem Integration and Connectivity tabSystem Management tabFunding and Project Costs tab
Survey Results tabEconomic Vitality tab

The Goal

Quality of Life and Natural Environment

Implement and manage a system that balances transportation needs with the natural environment and resource conservation.

Highest Rated Topics for this Goal

Protect environment during projects
2.6
Better air quality
2.5
Integrate plans with local
to identify growth areas
2.3
Planning that includes
minority low income voices
2.3
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High
Safety and Security tabSystem Integration and Connectivity tabSystem Management tabFunding and Project Costs tab
Survey Results tabEconomic Vitality tabQuality of Life and Natural Environment tab

The Goal

Safety and Security

Create a system that is safe for all users and flexible in preventing, preparing for, and coordinating responses to any incident, whether natural or man-made.

Highest Rated Topics for this Goal

Reduce distracted driving
2.5
Withstanding extreme weather
natural disasters
2.3
Roadway features
signs markings
2.2
Tech that improves
transportation system safety
2.2
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High
System Integration and Connectivity tabSystem Management tabFunding and Project Costs tab
Survey Results tabEconomic Vitality tabQuality of Life and Natural Environment tabSafety and Security tab

The Goal

System Integration and Connectivity

Bring modes of transportation together to provide a properly integrated system.

Highest Rated Topics for this Goal

Access for disability/age/no car ownership
2.5
Better connect different modes
2.4
Improve bike walking connections
2.3
increase pass rail frequency
2.3
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High
System Management tabFunding and Project Costs tab
Survey Results tabEconomic Vitality tabQuality of Life and Natural Environment tabSafety and Security tabSystem Integration and Connectivity tab

The Goal

System Management

Utilize cost-effective preservation and maintenance techniques to maximize transportation investments.

Highest Rated Topics for this Goal

Roads efficiently maintained
through engineering analysis
2.6
Innovative design methods
for roads bridges
2.5
Local community infrastructure
well-maintained
2.5
Bike ped facilities well-maintained
2.2
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High
Funding and Project Costs tab
Survey Results tabEconomic Vitality tabQuality of Life and Natural Environment tabSafety and Security tabSystem Integration and Connectivity tabSystem Management tab

Funding and project costs

While not one of the five identified goals of the Connect 2050 project, funding and project costs are an equally important area of focus.

Sustainable predictable
transportation funding sources
2.7
Sources other than gas tax
explored implemented
2.3
Private partnerships
to fund transportation projects
1.8
Exploring mile-based user fee
as transportation funding option
1.7
Exploring tolling as
transportation funding option
1.7
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High
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Comments by Mode

Through our online survey, social media accounts, and via the this website, Wisconsinites submitted comments about specific modes of transportation.

2,400
total comments received
MODE
Times
Referenced
Highways and Bridges
“Fixing and maintaining our roads and bridges are really vital to the economy.”
“We need to expand I-94 from Milwaukee to Madison!! It is a dangerous stretch of road that is the most travelled road in the state and it's only two lanes?!"
"We should prioritize reusing existing corridors, and increasing their capacity without major expansion projects, whenever possible. Adding dedicated mass transit lanes to a freeway (or even replacing an existing car lane) may be preferable to adding a new lane for cars and trucks."
“I feel the Appleton Area needs some serious attention. Both WIS 96 and 125 have massive accident rates as well as large traffic jams every time I attempt to use these roads."
“We know 39/90 north of Madison to the Dells needs to be expanded, what are we waiting for?”
"I think maintaining bridges so they Don't go below their load rating all across the state is important so no links to the network are lost."
Bicycles and Pedestrians
“Priority needs to be placed on safety and infrastructure for people that bike, walk, use transit as it relates to fundamental transportation modes and not incidental to other modes.”
"Making sure streets are designed for all roadway users.  Complete streets are needed, they are safer and end up saving money in the long run."
“I would love to see increased bike safety measures such as barriers for bike lanes, and more bike lanes.”
“Less focus on moving as many cars as quickly as possible (especially through towns/cities) and more attention to improving pedestrian/bike safety along multi-lane roads.”
"The increased popularity of standing scooters makes bike lanes all the more urgent, as scooters are too fast for sidewalks but too slow for traffic. As a cyclist, I would like to see segregated/protected bike lanes that are wide enough for a a scooter to be safely passed by a cyclist."
Passenger Rail
“The [Amtrak Hiawatha] is a vital part of transportation along the SE WI area, keep making that service better.”
“Intercity passenger rail between the 3 largest urban centers of WI (Milwaukee, Madison and Green Bay) is of the highest priority for me.”
"Returning to the high speed Midwest rail network makes a great deal of sense to me. There’s a significant volume of people traveling back and forth between cities."
"Many people commuting to work would like to have Train/bus/high speed options that eliminate driving themselves, and offer comfort and Internet access so they can work/study/research while on their commute."
"High speed rail between madison, milwaukee, la crosse, eau claire, with ability to take a train to ohare or minneapolis. tourism revenue would explode if wisconsinites get to travel easily and quickly between our metro areas for day trips, and if out of state residents could fly to bigger airports (ORD and MSP) and take a quick train ride to madison or milwaukee."
Transit
“I think the state of Wisconsin should have enabling legislation for the formation of a regional transit authority in the state.”
“We need more options in rural and central Wisconsin for public Transportation. Many individuals are limited to the one cab service we have in our area and it can be pretty pricey.”
“Making sure that individuals in no-car or low-income areas have expanded access (locations and hours) to transportation to vital services (grocery stores, pharmacy, medical), workplaces/schools, and transportation centers.”
"Transit isn’t very useful for most people - reimagine it so it actually saves us time vs driving ourselves."
"Mass transit infrastructure should be a higher priority than roads that support exclusively single-driver vehicles."
Intercity Bus
"We need more Intercity public transit options that are sustainable, including reliable and affordable train and bus services."
"Small communities in mostly rural areas need access to various forms of transportation. Rail transport, bus transport and other forms should coordinate and not duplicate for increased efficiency."
"A general increase is public transit options connecting population centers within Wisconsin would be nice."
"A central coordination of train and bus schedules helping those who do not drive(such as the blind or elderly) how to independently get around in Wisconsin."
"Can we do something about service to the north?  Right now, Greyhound goes to Eau Claire and Amtrak goes to Wausau. From there, access is limited to private vehicles. You basically have to rent a car. Half of our state is without public transportation. "
Freight Rail
“Wisconsin needs at least one major multi-modal facility on a major rail line in the state. WisDOT working with those companies can build several multi-modal facilities to reduce truck traffic on the highways and allow the rail lines to better serve the industry in the state.”
"Invest in intermodal freight. Bring a rail intermodal container terminal to east, south east or south-central Wiscsonsin."
“Think about automation at huge transfer centers/terminals for the railcars carrying trucks/trailers.”
“Due to the extensive wear and tear on roads by semis and the safety concerns with semis and cars operating together, large investment into rail needs to happen.”
"There is a fairly decent rail system in the state between active lines and lines with track present but are out of service.  Improving existing rail infrastructure on these existing lines and rehabilitating rail banked tracks can help bring passenger and some freight service back to rural areas where it's needed."
Airports
"Improving maintenance of the air transportation in Wisconsin. Our local airports are vital to the communities they serve."
"My priority is a complete transportation network with all options to travel from air to road to bike to bus."
"I feel that the Madison airport should be expanded to accommodate global travel."
"If tourists can get from major airport to parks without having to drive, more would visit and they get more time with family on the travel methods."
"I would love to see a train that would run from Green Bay to MKE/Chicago  and Minneapolis! It would make it easier to use airports in those areas if people could have a quick option to get there!"
Ports, Harbors and Ferry
"Making the Port of Milwaukee truly multi-mode and enhancing rail service to keep more trucks off roads."
“…being able to plug the state into worldwide commerce even more, utilizing the waterways and railroads … will definitely increase in importance as we strive for more exports and hopefully boost our standing in the global economy.”
“…revitalizing the ports of Green Bay to draw in water shipping from across the great lakes.”
“Car ferry from Egg Harbor to Marinette to eliminate the drive around Greenbay [sic] for people who want to travel from northern WI to Door County and vice versa.”
“More accountability for the environmental impact of marine transit - hefty fines for littering, spills, facilitation of the transportation of invasive species, dumping, noise/light pollution.”
900
300
300
250
54
30
20
8

Comments by Topic

Through our online survey, social media accounts, and via this website, Wisconsinites submitted comments about the transportation-related topics listed here.

2,400
total comments received
Topic
Times
Referenced
Alternatives to Driving
"More alternatives to driving personal cars, like rail and bus service, that connects statewide to both rural and urban areas. Too many areas of the state are entirely car-dependent."
"Many small towns only have car and driver, maybe a cab, no bus, no train. We are not connected to the world."
"Focusing efforts on supporting mass transit and other non-car transit will help accomplish a whole lot of other goals, like reducing environmental impact, integrating with local plans, connecting low-income populations and areas to economic opportunities, reducing road wear, and improving population health."
"Prioritize public transit and ped/bike infrastructure, stop expanding high ways, and create an equitable transportation system appropriate for 2020 and beyond."
"A system that allows people the freedom of choice and does not essentially confine people to driving a private vehicle to get around."
Funding
"Need stable source that survives changes in vehicle fuel use and choices and that preserves purchasing power by routinely adjusting the revenue stream."
“We need to explore the option for tolling our expressways so that more money from fast taxes, registration fees, etc. are available for maintaining local roads.”
“Lower impact modes and lower emissions should be rewarded, not punished by a bigger fee on hybrids and electrics.”
"The gas tax is what we have and can implement right now. Raising it to support development of a 21st century transportation system that actually works for more working families is a good idea - plain and simple."
“100% in favor of exploring ways to increase funding from sources like     commercial or heavy drivers, gas or emissions taxes, and tolls that target out of state drivers.”
"Allotment of funds to local governments to maintain and improve existing roadways need increased revenue from the state.”
Maintenance
"Too many roads and streets are full of potholes and need to be fixed. The worse are along the beginning or end of and on Interstate on/off ramps."
“Focus on maintenance and preservation of the existing system rather than expansion of new highways and roadways. As our existing roadways are redeveloped, reallocate space so that they can be used to provide safer, more attractive walking, bicycling, and public transit options.”
"Ensuring that transportation infrastructure is resilient and regularly maintained to avoid failures that would drastically impact the economy."
"Maintaining the interstates and major highways during winter storms. Funding to get more plows out during storms to keep the major roadways pass hazardous."
"Stop the 5-10 year band-aid projects and get back to really fixing the infrastructure problems we have.  We are wasting money by not addressing the real problems and just throwing new pavement down."
Safety
“Wisconsin needs better railroad crossings from a safety perspective.”
“Changing driver behavior to reduce distracted driving and improve attentiveness behind the wheel is critical to improving the safety and efficiency of our transportation system.”
“Creating motorcycle awareness and teaching other drivers how to interact with motorcycles on the roads appropriately.”
"Actually enforcement, radar, or cameras. People disregard the laws and signs because they know there will be no consequences."
“Drunk driving is still a major problem in our state”
“Bigger wider roads in communities make it more dangerous for pedestrians.”
"Drivers are becoming more and more impatient in work zones and in winter driving conditions. The DOT needs more initiatives to slow drivers down and make sure they are paying attention in work zones."
Environment
“Shifting away from our reliance on fossil fuels and creating environmentally-conscious transportation systems that are effective and safe will be a critical area of development in the next quarter century.”
“Promote increased material recycling on projects and integrate native species into WisDOT right of way when re-establishing vegetation.”
"Reducing dependence on fossil fuels and encouraging development of hybrid and alternative fuel methods of transportation."
"Switch to electric vehicles with renewable energy charging stations."
"Nature corridors for animal movement (over or under infrastructure)."
Technology
“Autonomous and/or connected vehicles have the potential to save a tremendous amount of resources and significantly reduce traffic fatalities. This should be a high priority with national standards and coordinated programs to implement systems in areas with the highest potential positive impact first”
“Wisconsin should be a leader in new transportation technologies such as autonomous vehicles and reversible lanes. Transportation demand management will help freight move efficiently and make commutes for the workforce manageable.”
"Electric Vehicles will be here in no time ... so prepare infrastructure to accommodate."
"Enact laws and policies that lead tofaster adoption of self-driving cars."
"2050 could bring quite a bit of change. Technology and transportation advancements just in the past 5-10 years has started to change the way we utilize our transportation network. I hope that as these changes continue to occur, we as a state can adapt with them to stay ahead."
Equity
“We need to continue making serious progress toward planning and funding investments in public transportation, walking, biking, and smart technology to manage safe and interconnected systems. Providing mobility options for people of all ages and abilities supports a happier, healthier, and more economically active &independent population.”
“Securing reliable and affordable transportation that doesn't put financial barriers in front of users.  Equitable access to all transportation options across all social economic statuses is essential. ”
“Many affordable housing options in Wisconsin (rural) do not have proper access to public transportation. For people living just above or below the poverty line, they have to choose between affordable housing or affordable transportation.”
“We must focus more heavily on engaging minority/Black citizens to make sure this next Plan addresses their needs.”
"Affordable ways for seniors and low income people to get around locally and have access regionally."
Mode Connectivity
"Multi mode transportation systems. Don't just concentrate on personal vehicles. Mass transit and pedestrian/bicycle facilities and networks need to be given equal attention."
"The future of transportation is multi-modal. To encourage people to use a multi-modal system, we must make it accessible, connective, and well advertised."
"Investments in technologies and methods to reduce single occupant vehicle miles traveled and shift them towards multi-modal and more sustainable options."
“The state should coordinate multi-model stations (airport, intercity bus, intracity bus, train) where the cost can be recovered via user fees.”
"I recommend Transportation hubs be established. Like Park and Ride Lots with additional parking (maybe even elevated structures) where people can drive to, and pick up local transit, BRT, shuttles, etc. One hub could be a P&R lot in Wauwatosa area, one at State Fair Park, Goerke's Corners, County KR, etc. From these lots would be connectivity to the downtowns, MRMC, Airport, Amtrak stations. Schedules would be meshed with little to no waiting time."
Rural
"Our highways and bridges are failing, especially in rural Wisconsin. Some area in northern wisconsin feel like your in the 50'swith gravel roads and roads that are not maintained."
"Rural areas need to be prioritized for transportation for elderly. There is nothing."
"I would love for Wisconsin as a whole to become more pedestrian friendly and make it possible for people who live in rural communities to live without a car."
"Transit options in smaller and rural communities, and basic intercity connections via bus or rail are sorely lacking in Wisconsin. As a non-car owner I find it absurdly easier to travel to other states or countries than it is to travel within much of my own state."
"Connecting rural areas with the cities where the necessary services are, like hospitals, treatment programs, and social support functions (food banks, support groups)."
Freight
"Wisconsin is famous for our agricultural and industrial products.  We are handicapped by our lack of a cost effective and efficient method to load and ship containers by rail."
"Tax or fee on packages delivered within the state by carriers such as UPS, Amazon, FedEx. People order online saving themselves a trip, but transportation systems are still used."
"Improve the last mile service for the goods to customers."
"Long distance travel and shipment in Wisconsin should move toward self driving vehicles to reduce energy consumption, improve transportation times and reduce crashes."
"I think anyone can see that we do need to help our farmers and manufactures get their goods were they need to go, this pandemic has showing how woefully inadequate our transportation system is and we need to help."
Accessibility
"Transportation is often cited as the biggest barrier for people with disabilities, people who are low income, and the elderly to engage with the community around them. Effective and affordable transportation is necessary for our community to reach its fullest potential. It is heartbreaking when I miss out on opportunities because I don’t have access to reliable public transportation."
"Small rural communities need help funding transportation for special needs persons. We have a number of residents mobility-impaired residents who have no choice but to travel on the street in their chair."
“With self-driving vehicle, it is IMPORTANT to ensure that they are accessible to all, including persons with disabilities.”
"The population of people with visual impairment is expected to double by 2030 because the baby-boomers are aging. It will be important to remember this as future transportation plans are being considered."
"Ensure transportation is ADA compliant and beyond, fully accessible to people with disabilities."
Tourism
“Bike trails are great for tourism and support of small communities. Build the route of the badger out completely to help connect bike tourism dollars to small communities.”
“Wisconsin has some beautiful sights, and it sure would be nice for Wisconsin to make sound long-lasting roads a priority.”
“High speed rail! That way people can travel for business and tourism faster with having less of an impact on the environment.”
"We are considered a tourist state with a thriving economy and we need the safest roads for ourselves and visitors."
"I expect that we will continue to see heavy weekend traffic from our cities and urban areas to recreation and second-home destinations. Targeting transportation options toward these users by incorporating easy baggage handling and local shuttles would improve safety, create an enjoyable experience for users and improve access for more travelers to these destinations. This would also create platforms for transportation investment in more rural areas that could benefit local users."
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150
100
100
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50

Comments Summary

We received 2,400 comments from across Wisconsin during our initial outreach phase. The statements below summarize the top common themes your feedback revealed.
Roadway Maintenance

Increase attention to roadway maintenance and state of good repair.

Driving Alternatives

Increase focus on alternatives to driving such as transit, rail, bike and pedestrian, and integrating connections among modes.

Passenger and Freight Rail

Invest in existing and new passenger rail corridors and expanding freight rail facilities.

Sustainable Funding

Provide sustainable funding sources and carefully assess funding options such as gas tax increases, tolling, and mileage-based user fees.

Equitable Transportation

Invest in a fully accessible network to achieve equity for low-income, elderly, disabled, and rural populations.

Environmental Protection

Protect our natural environment as a valuable amenity for Wisconsinites and tourists, and reduce vehicle emissions..

Safety

Improve roadway safety with a focus on curbing distracted, drunk, and reckless driving.

Competitiveness

Continually improve Wisconsin’s highway corridors to maintain our economic competitiveness.

Technology Readiness

Focus on infrastructure and design that supports alternative fuels, connected and autonomous vehicles.

Balanced Infrastructure

Appropriately size transportation infrastructure for smooth traffic flow without overbuilding.

How we connected

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Responses by zip code.Responses by gender.Responses by age.Responses by race and ethnicity.

Note: Use the arrows to learn more about the specific topics related to each goal.

Survey results

On which goals should Connect 2050 focus?

Our survey asked respondents to allocate $100 among Connect 2050’s five transportation goals. This is how you chose to spend it:

QUALITY OF LIFE AND NATURAL ENVIRONMENT
$21.86
Economic Vitality
$20.97
Safety and Security
$20.30
System Integration and Connectivity
$18.74
System management
$18.14

The Goal

Economic Vitality

Maintain and improve the state’s transportation system so it is responsive to global and regional economic needs and changing conditions

Highest Rated Topics for this Goal

Respondents rated the following topics related to Economic Vitality as their highest priorities:

Highest rated topic across all goals = Top priority for All
Roads in good condition
2.8
Affordable local
transport options
2.3
Protect environment
reduce fossil fuel
2.3
Robust freight
supply chain
2.2
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High

The Goal

Quality of Life and Natural Environment

Implement and manage a system that balances transportation needs with the natural environment and resource conservation.

Highest Rated Topics for this Goal

Respondents rated the following topics related to Quality of Life and Natural Environment as their highest priorities:

Protect environment
during projects
2.6
Better air quality
2.5
Integrate plans with local
to identify growth areas
2.3
Planning that includes
minority low income voices
2.3
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High

The Goal

Safety and Security

Create a system that is safe for all users and flexible in preventing, preparing for, and coordinating responses to any incident, whether natural or man-made.

Highest Rated Topics for this Goal

Respondents rated the following topics related to Safety and Security as their highest priorities:

Reduce distracted driving
2.5
Withstanding extreme weather
natural disasters
2.3
Roadway features signs markings
2.2
Tech that improves
transportation system safety
2.2
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High

The Goal

System Integration and Connectivity

Bring modes of transportation together to provide a properly integrated system.

Highest Rated Topics for this Goal

Respondents rated the following topics related to System Integration and Connectivity as their highest priorities:

Access for disability/age/no car ownership
2.5
Better connect different modes
2.4
Improve bike walking connections
2.3
increase pass rail frequency
2.3
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High

The Goal

System Management

Utilize cost-effective preservation and maintenance techniques to maximize transportation investments.

Highest Rated Topics for this Goal

Respondents rated the following topics related to System Management as their highest priorities:

Roads efficiently maintained
through engineering analysis
2.6
Innovative design methods
for roads bridges
2.5
Local community infrastructure
well-maintained
2.5
Bike ped facilities
well-maintained
2.2
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High

Funding and
project costs

While not one of the five identified goals of the Connect 2050 project, funding and project costs are an equally important area of focus.

Below are the topics related to funding and project costs that Wisconsinites rated as highest priority.

Sustainable predictable
transportation funding sources
2.7
Sources other than gas tax
explored implemented
2.3
Private partnerships
to fund transportation projects
1.8
Exploring mile-based user fee
as transportation funding option
1.7
Exploring tolling as
transportation funding option
1.7
Priority Ratings System: 1 - Low, 2 - Mid, 3 - High

Comments by mode

Through our online survey, social media accounts, and via the Connect 2050 website, Wisconsinites submitted comments regarding specific transportation modes listed here.

Highways and Bridges

“Fixing and maintaining our roads and bridges are really vital to the economy.”

“We need to expand I-94 from Milwaukee to Madison!! It is a dangerous stretch of road that is the most travelled road in the state and it's only two lanes?!"

"We should prioritize reusing existing corridors, and increasing their capacity without major expansion projects, whenever possible. Adding dedicated mass transit lanes to a freeway (or even replacing an existing car lane) may be preferable to adding a new lane for cars and trucks."

“I feel the Appleton Area needs some serious attention. Both WIS 96 and 125 have massive accident rates as well as large traffic jams every time I attempt to use these roads."

“We know 39/90 north of Madison to the Dells needs to be expanded, what are we waiting for?”

"I think maintaining bridges so they Don't go below their load rating all across the state is important so no links to the network are lost."

Bicycles and Pedestrians

“Priority needs to be placed on safety and infrastructure for people that bike, walk, use transit as it relates to fundamental transportation modes and not incidental to other modes.”

"Making sure streets are designed for all roadway users.  Complete streets are needed, they are safer and end up saving money in the long run."

“I would love to see increased bike safety measures such as barriers for bike lanes, and more bike lanes.”

“Less focus on moving as many cars as quickly as possible (especially through towns/cities) and more attention to improving pedestrian/bike safety along multi-lane roads.”

"The increased popularity of standing scooters makes bike lanes all the more urgent, as scooters are too fast for sidewalks but too slow for traffic. As a cyclist, I would like to see segregated/protected bike lanes that are wide enough for a a scooter to be safely passed by a cyclist."

"I think maintaining bridges so they Don't go below their load rating all across the state is important so no links to the network are lost."

Passenger Rail

“The [Amtrak Hiawatha] is a vital part of transportation along the SE WI area, keep making that service better.”

“Intercity passenger rail between the 3 largest urban centers of WI (Milwaukee, Madison and Green Bay) is of the highest priority for me.”

"Returning to the high speed Midwest rail network makes a great deal of sense to me. There’s a significant volume of people traveling back and forth between cities."

"Many people commuting to work would like to have Train/bus/high speed options that eliminate driving themselves, and offer comfort and Internet access so they can work/study/research while on their commute."

"High speed rail between madison, milwaukee, la crosse, eau claire, with ability to take a train to ohare or minneapolis. tourism revenue would explode if wisconsinites get to travel easily and quickly between our metro areas for day trips, and if out of state residents could fly to bigger airports (ORD and MSP) and take a quick train ride to madison or milwaukee."

Transit

“I think the state of Wisconsin should have enabling legislation for the formation of a regional transit authority in the state.”

“We need more options in rural and central Wisconsin for public Transportation. Many individuals are limited to the one cab service we have in our area and it can be pretty pricey.”

“Making sure that individuals in no-car or low-income areas have expanded access (locations and hours) to transportation to vital services (grocery stores, pharmacy, medical), workplaces/schools, and transportation centers.”

"Transit isn’t very useful for most people - reimagine it so it actually saves us time vs driving ourselves."

"Mass transit infrastructure should be a higher priority than roads that support exclusively single-driver vehicles."

Intercity Bus

"We need more Intercity public transit options that are sustainable, including reliable and affordable train and bus services."

"Small communities in mostly rural areas need access to various forms of transportation. Rail transport, bus transport and other forms should coordinate and not duplicate for increased efficiency."

"A general increase is public transit options connecting population centers within Wisconsin would be nice."

"A central coordination of train and bus schedules helping those who do not drive(such as the blind or elderly) how to independently get around in Wisconsin."

"Can we do something about service to the north?  Right now, Greyhound goes to Eau Claire and Amtrak goes to Wausau. From there, access is limited to private vehicles. You basically have to rent a car. Half of our state is without public transportation. "

Freight Rail

“Wisconsin needs at least one major multi-modal facility on a major rail line in the state. WisDOT working with those companies can build several multi-modal facilities to reduce truck traffic on the highways and allow the rail lines to better serve the industry in the state.”

"Invest in intermodal freight. Bring a rail intermodal container terminal to east, south east or south-central Wiscsonsin."

“Think about automation at huge transfer centers/terminals for the railcars carrying trucks/trailers.”

“Due to the extensive wear and tear on roads by semis and the safety concerns with semis and cars operating together, large investment into rail needs to happen.”

"There is a fairly decent rail system in the state between active lines and lines with track present but are out of service.  Improving existing rail infrastructure on these existing lines and rehabilitating rail banked tracks can help bring passenger and some freight service back to rural areas where it's needed."

Airports

"Improving maintenance of the air transportation in Wisconsin. Our local airports are vital to the communities they serve."

"My priority is a complete transportation network with all options to travel from air to road to bike to bus."

"I feel that the Madison airport should be expanded to accommodate global travel."

"If tourists can get from major airport to parks without having to drive, more would visit and they get more time with family on the travel methods."

"I would love to see a train that would run from Green Bay to MKE/Chicago  and Minneapolis! It would make it easier to use airports in those areas if people could have a quick option to get there!"

Ports, Harbors and Ferry

"Making the Port of Milwaukee truly multi-mode and enhancing rail service to keep more trucks off roads."

“…being able to plug the state into worldwide commerce even more, utilizing the waterways and railroads … will definitely increase in importance as we strive for more exports and hopefully boost our standing in the global economy.”

“…revitalizing the ports of Green Bay to draw in water shipping from across the great lakes.”

“Car ferry from Egg Harbor to Marinette to eliminate the drive around Greenbay [sic] for people who want to travel from northern WI to Door County and vice versa.”

“More accountability for the environmental impact of marine transit - hefty fines for littering, spills, facilitation of the transportation of invasive species, dumping, noise/light pollution.”

Comments by topic

Through our online survey, social media accounts, and via the Connect 2050 website, Wisconsinites submitted comments about the transportation-related topics listed here.

Alternatives to Driving

"More alternatives to driving personal cars, like rail and bus service, that connects statewide to both rural and urban areas. Too many areas of the state are entirely car-dependent."

"Many small towns only have car and driver, maybe a cab, no bus, no train. We are not connected to the world."

"Focusing efforts on supporting mass transit and other non-car transit will help accomplish a whole lot of other goals, like reducing environmental impact, integrating with local plans, connecting low-income populations and areas to economic opportunities, reducing road wear, and improving population health."

"Prioritize public transit and ped/bike infrastructure, stop expanding high ways, and create an equitable transportation system appropriate for 2020 and beyond."

"A system that allows people the freedom of choice and does not essentially confine people to driving a private vehicle to get around."

Funding

"Need stable source that survives changes in vehicle fuel use and choices and that preserves purchasing power by routinely adjusting the revenue stream."

“We need to explore the option for tolling our expressways so that more money from fast taxes, registration fees, etc. are available for maintaining local roads.”

“Lower impact modes and lower emissions should be rewarded, not punished by a bigger fee on hybrids and electrics.”

"The gas tax is what we have and can implement right now. Raising it to support development of a 21st century transportation system that actually works for more working families is a good idea - plain and simple."

“100% in favor of exploring ways to increase funding from sources like commercial or heavy drivers, gas or emissions taxes, and tolls that target out of state drivers.”

"Allotment of funds to local governments to maintain and improve existing roadways need increased revenue from the state.”

Maintenance

"Too many roads and streets are full of potholes and need to be fixed. The worse are along the beginning or end of and on Interstate on/off ramps."

“Focus on maintenance and preservation of the existing system rather than expansion of new highways and roadways. As our existing roadways are redeveloped, reallocate space so that they can be used to provide safer, more attractive walking, bicycling, and public transit options.”

"Ensuring that transportation infrastructure is resilient and regularly maintained to avoid failures that would drastically impact the economy."

"Maintaining the interstates and major highways during winter storms. Funding to get more plows out during storms to keep the major roadways pass hazardous."

"Stop the 5-10 year band-aid projects and get back to really fixing the infrastructure problems we have.  We are wasting money by not addressing the real problems and just throwing new pavement down."

Safety

“Wisconsin needs better railroad crossings from a safety perspective.”

“Changing driver behavior to reduce distracted driving and improve attentiveness behind the wheel is critical to improving the safety and efficiency of our transportation system.”

“Creating motorcycle awareness and teaching other drivers how to interact with motorcycles on the roads appropriately.”

"Actually enforcement, radar, or cameras. People disregard the laws and signs because they know there will be no consequences."

“Drunk driving is still a major problem in our state”

“Bigger wider roads in communities make it more dangerous for pedestrians.”

"Drivers are becoming more and more impatient in work zones and in winter driving conditions. The DOT needs more initiatives to slow drivers down and make sure they are paying attention in work zones."

Environment

“Shifting away from our reliance on fossil fuels and creating environmentally-conscious transportation systems that are effective and safe will be a critical area of development in the next quarter century.”

“Promote increased material recycling on projects and integrate native species into WisDOT right of way when re-establishing vegetation.”

"Reducing dependence on fossil fuels and encouraging development of hybrid and alternative fuel methods of transportation."

"Switch to electric vehicles with renewable energy charging stations."

"Nature corridors for animal movement (over or under infrastructure)."

Technology

“Autonomous and/or connected vehicles have the potential to save a tremendous amount of resources and significantly reduce traffic fatalities. This should be a high priority with national standards and coordinated programs to implement systems in areas with the highest potential positive impact first”

“Wisconsin should be a leader in new transportation technologies such as autonomous vehicles and reversible lanes. Transportation demand management will help freight move efficiently and make commutes for the workforce manageable.”

"Electric Vehicles will be here in no time ... so prepare infrastructure to accommodate."

"Enact laws and policies that lead tofaster adoption of self-driving cars."

"2050 could bring quite a bit of change. Technology and transportation advancements just in the past 5-10 years has started to change the way we utilize our transportation network. I hope that as these changes continue to occur, we as a state can adapt with them to stay ahead."

Equity

“We need to continue making serious progress toward planning and funding investments in public transportation, walking, biking, and smart technology to manage safe and interconnected systems. Providing mobility options for people of all ages and abilities supports a happier, healthier, and more economically active &independent population.”

“Securing reliable and affordable transportation that doesn't put financial barriers in front of users. Equitable access to all transportation options across all social economic statuses is essential.”

“Many affordable housing options in Wisconsin (rural) do not have proper access to public transportation. For people living just above or below the poverty line, they have to choose between affordable housing or affordable transportation.”

“We must focus more heavily on engaging minority/Black citizens to make sure this next Plan addresses their needs.”

"Affordable ways for seniors and low income people to get around locally and have access regionally."

Mode Connectivity

"Multi mode transportation systems. Don't just concentrate on personal vehicles. Mass transit and pedestrian/bicycle facilities and networks need to be given equal attention."

"The future of transportation is multi-modal. To encourage people to use a multi-modal system, we must make it accessible, connective, and well advertised."

"Investments in technologies and methods to reduce single occupant vehicle miles traveled and shift them towards multi-modal and more sustainable options."

“The state should coordinate multi-model stations (airport, intercity bus, intracity bus, train) where the cost can be recovered via user fees.”

"I recommend Transportation hubs be established. Like Park and Ride Lots with additional parking (maybe even elevated structures) where people can drive to, and pick up local transit, BRT, shuttles, etc. One hub could be a P&R lot in Wauwatosa area, one at State Fair Park, Goerke's Corners, County KR, etc. From these lots would be connectivity to the downtowns, MRMC, Airport, Amtrak stations. Schedules would be meshed with little to no waiting time."

Rural

"Our highways and bridges are failing, especially in rural Wisconsin. Some area in northern wisconsin feel like your in the 50'swith gravel roads and roads that are not maintained."

"Rural areas need to be prioritized for transportation for elderly. There is nothing."

"I would love for Wisconsin as a whole to become more pedestrian friendly and make it possible for people who live in rural communities to live without a car."

"Transit options in smaller and rural communities, and basic intercity connections via bus or rail are sorely lacking in Wisconsin. As a non-car owner I find it absurdly easier to travel to other states or countries than it is to travel within much of my own state."

"Connecting rural areas with the cities where the necessary services are, like hospitals, treatment programs, and social support functions (food banks, support groups)."

Freight

"Wisconsin is famous for our agricultural and industrial products.  We are handicapped by our lack of a cost effective and efficient method to load and ship containers by rail."

"Tax or fee on packages delivered within the state by carriers such as UPS, Amazon, FedEx. People order online saving themselves a trip, but transportation systems are still used."

"Improve the last mile service for the goods to customers."

"Long distance travel and shipment in Wisconsin should move toward self driving vehicles to reduce energy consumption, improve transportation times and reduce crashes."

"I think anyone can see that we do need to help our farmers and manufactures get their goods were they need to go, this pandemic has showing how woefully inadequate our transportation system is and we need to help."

Accessibility

"Transportation is often cited as the biggest barrier for people with disabilities, people who are low income, and the elderly to engage with the community around them. Effective and affordable transportation is necessary for our community to reach its fullest potential. It is heartbreaking when I miss out on opportunities because I don’t have access to reliable public transportation."

"Small rural communities need help funding transportation for special needs persons. We have a number of residents mobility-impaired residents who have no choice but to travel on the street in their chair."

“With self-driving vehicle, it is IMPORTANT to ensure that they are accessible to all, including persons with disabilities.”

"The population of people with visual impairment is expected to double by 2030 because the baby-boomers are aging. It will be important to remember this as future transportation plans are being considered."

"Ensure transportation is ADA compliant and beyond, fully accessible to people with disabilities."

Tourism

“Bike trails are great for tourism and support of small communities. Build the route of the badger out completely to help connect bike tourism dollars to small communities.”

“Wisconsin has some beautiful sights, and it sure would be nice for Wisconsin to make sound long-lasting roads a priority.”

“High speed rail! That way people can travel for business and tourism faster with having less of an impact on the environment.”

"We are considered a tourist state with a thriving economy and we need the safest roads for ourselves and visitors."

"I expect that we will continue to see heavy weekend traffic from our cities and urban areas to recreation and second-home destinations. Targeting transportation options toward these users by incorporating easy baggage handling and local shuttles would improve safety, create an enjoyable experience for users and improve access for more travelers to these destinations. This would also create platforms for transportation investment in more rural areas that could benefit local users."

Roadway Maintenance

Increase attention to roadway maintenance and state of good repair.

Driving Alternatives

Increase focus on alternatives to driving such as transit, rail, bike and pedestrian, and integrating connections among modes.

Passenger and Freight Rail

Invest in existing and new passenger rail corridors and expanding freight rail facilities.

Sustainable Funding

Provide sustainable funding sources and carefully assess funding options such as gas tax increases, tolling, and mileage-based user fees.

Equitable Transportation

Invest in a fully accessible network to achieve equity for low-income, elderly, disabled, and rural populations.

Environmental Protection

Protect our natural environment as a valuable amenity for Wisconsinites and tourists, and reduce vehicle emissions..

Safety

Improve roadway safety with a focus on curbing distracted, drunk, and reckless driving.

Competitiveness

Continually improve Wisconsin’s highway corridors to maintain our economic competitiveness.

Technology Readiness

Focus on infrastructure and design that supports alternative fuels, connected and autonomous vehicles.

Balanced Infrastructure

Appropriately size transportation infrastructure for smooth traffic flow without overbuilding.

Connect 2050 toolkit

Help us drive participation!

We encourage you to use the toolkit information to ...

  • Present or send an email about Connect 2050 to your board, constituents or employees

  • Post about Connect 2050 on social media

  • Distribute more information on the plan

These resources are also helpful for those who do not have access to the internet.

I want to ...
Select action
Connect 2050 Toolkit
Select an action above
View, share, download or print the following Connect 2050 project materials:
  • PowerPoint overview presentation file
  • Recorded presentation (.mp4 file)
  • Plan overview factsheet
  • Social media sharing resources
  • Trends factsheets (English, Hmong and Spanish versions)
  • Survey (long and short versions), returnable by U.S. mail or email
  • Comment form, returnable by U.S. mail or email
View, share, download or print the following Connect 2050 materials:
  • Plan overview factsheet
  • Trends factsheets (English, Hmong and Spanish versions)
  • Survey (long and short versions), returnable by U.S. mail or email
  • Comment form, returnable by U.S. mail or email
Interested in talking to your board, constituents or neighbors about Connect 2050? View, share, download or print the following materials:
  • PowerPoint presentation (with talking points) giving a brief overview of the plan and how to participate
  • Recorded, narrated Connect 2050 presentation (.mp4 file)
  • Survey (long and short versions), returnable by U.S. mail or email
  • Comment form, returnable by U.S. mail or email
I want to ...
Connect 2050 Toolkit
Select an action above
Select an action At Left
View, share, download or print the following Connect 2050 project materials:
  • PowerPoint overview presentation file
  • Recorded presentation (.mp4 file)
  • Plan overview factsheet
  • Social media sharing resources
  • Trends factsheets (English, Hmong and Spanish versions)
  • Survey (long and short versions), returnable by U.S. mail or email
  • Comment form, returnable by U.S. mail or email
Interested in talking to your board, constituents or neighbors about Connect 2050? View, share, download or print the following materials:
  • PowerPoint presentation (with talking points) giving a brief overview of the plan and how to participate
  • Recorded, narrated Connect 2050 presentation (.mp4 file)
  • Survey (long and short versions), returnable by U.S. mail or email
  • Comment form, returnable by U.S. mail or email
Go to Files
We have suggested posts for ...
  • Community members
  • Business owners and representatives
  • Industry stakeholders
... to use on the following platforms:
Screenshot from the stakeholder webinar.

Stakeholder Webinar

We invited transportation stakeholder groups across the state to attend our live virtual meetings on Oct. 12, 15 and 16, 2020, and posted the recordings to YouTube channel for all to see. By the end of 2020, our webinars got more than 400 views. Visit our YouTube channel to view the recorded presentations.

view Webinar

Virtual Open House

Our virtual open house is a digital, self-guided "tour" of the Connect 2050 plan process and goals, and trends that influence transportation in Wisconsin. It was designed to replace in-person meetings that were canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

view the virtual open house
Screenshots from the virtual open house.
Note: The Connect 2050 public involvement process that the Public Involvement Plan originally outlined was updated to reflect the impacts of the COVID-19 virus. All proposed pop-up events were cancelled; however, WisDOT conducted virtual or in-person public meetings in accordance with state and local public health guidelines for group gatherings during this pandemic.
Public Involvement Plan Icon