The Illinois Department of Transportation has announced the start of a series of listening sessions over the next month to get your opinion on the future of infrastructure projects in the state.

Officials say they want to discuss the state’s needs and the steps required to make sure the right investments are being made to keep Illinois competitive in a 21st century global economy. The meetings will be held in multiple communities throughout the state, with a goal of presenting Governor Rauner’s office with a comprehensive package of recommendations for consideration this spring.

Why are the meetings being held? Well, according to IDOT:

Over the next six years, 40 percent of Illinois highways and one in seven bridges will be in unacceptable condition. The transit network’s bus and rail system will not be adequately overhauled, leading to less reliable and underutilized service. School and other key state construction projects will continue to lag behind and fall into disrepair.

The Rockford stops will take place on May 14 at 12:30 p.m. at the Radisson Hotel on South Bell School and at 3 p.m. at RMAP Headquarters at 315 North Main Street. You can RSVP for the events here.

At each visit, the objective will be to engage residents, businesses, local leaders and various stakeholders in identifying the infrastructure challenges we face and setting the priorities for investing now and for future generations. Among the topics that will be addressed are establishing needs and priorities, improving deteriorating roads, bridges and transit systems, providing better access across multiple transportation modes and reinvesting in state facilities, such as schools and state parks.