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Environmental Research: A Decade of Accomplishments 1990 - 2000

Communities, Neighborhoods, and People

Ongoing Research:

Environmental Guidebook

Performer(s): Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC)
Sponsor(s): FHWA, Planning & Environment CBU

To order:
URL: Full text available at: www.environment.fhwa.dot.gov/guidebook/.

For more information:
Lamar Smith. FHWA , HEPE, 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-8994; Fax: 202-366-7660; Email: Lamar.smith@dot.gov.

Abstract
The purpose of this guidebook is to collect and present, by subject and chronological order, FHWA's guidance on implementing the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) and the project development process, through policies, procedures, memoranda, and other documentation.

Guidance on NEPA and Transportation Project Development

Performer(s): FHWA
Sponsor(s): FHWA

To order:
Council on Environmental Quality; Old Executive Office Bldg., Room 360, Washington, DC 20502;
Tel: 202-395-5750; Fax: 202-456-6546
URL: http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/eop/ceq.

For more information:
Fred Skaer. FHWA , HEPE-1; 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-2058; Fax: 202-366-7660; Email: Fred.skaer@dot.gov.

Abstract
Since issuance in 1987 of FHWA Technical Advisory 6640.8a- "Guidelines for Preparing and Processing Environmental and Section 4(f) Documents," much has changed in the factors agencies need to consider in addressing the environmental impacts of transportation projects. Given the new emphasis for improving the way State Departments of Transportation consider community and environmental resources in their transportation decisionmaking process, the FHWA has seen the need to update this Technical Advisory (TA) in relation to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA). The new TA will focus on applying environmental analysis to transportation decisionmaking. Ultimately, the TA must reflect the new environmental regulations that will replace Title 23, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 771 (23 CFR 771) and will be revised concurrently with the new regulations.

COMPLETED RESEARCH:

Excellence in Highway Design Graphic Database CD (Completed 1997)

Performer(s): FHWA
Sponsor(s): FHWA

To order:
Jacqueline Jenkins. FHWA , HEPH-1, 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-0106; Fax: 202-366-3409. Email: Jacqueline.Jenkins@dot.gov.

Abstract
A multimedia database of approximately 600 photos of transportation enhancement projects of nominated and winning projects submitted for the biennial Excellence in Highway Design Awards from the years 1984-1994. Information about the projects includes a written description, photographs, and some video clips. Useful to highway designers and the public. [See the project entitled "Visual Database of Transportation Enhancements CD-ROM," listed in this appendix, for the previous CD.]

Flexibility in Highway Design (Completed 1997)

Performer(s): FHWA
Sponsor(s): FHWA

To order:
Benita Smith. FHWA , HEPH-10, 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-2065; Fax: 202-366-3409; Email: Benita.smith@dot.gov;
Order No.: FHWA-PD-97-062.

Abstract
This guide is about designing highways that incorporate community values that are safe, efficient, effective mechanisms for the movement of people and goods. It is written for highway engineers and project managers who want to learn more about the flexibility available to them when designing roads. Congress stressed preserving historic and scenic values and provided dramatic new flexibilities in funding. The guide does not establish any new or different laws or geometric design standards or criteria for highways and streets.

Historically Black College and University (HBCU) Project with South Carolina State University - Social Impact Assessment for Beaufort, SC (Completed 1996)

Performer(s): South Carolina State University
Sponsor(s): FHWA, SC Div. Office; South Carolina Dept. of Transportation (SCDOT)

To order:
Barbara Beagles. South Carolina Dept. of Transportation, P.O. Box 191, Columbia, SC 29202;
Tel: 803-253-6361; Fax: 803-737-2038; Email: Beaglebd@dot.state.sc.us.

Abstract
A social impact assessment was conducted in the town of Beaufort, South Carolina, concerning anticipated impact from a Federal-aid highway project. The final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)/Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) was completed January 22, 1996.

Innovative Techniques for Public Involvement in Transportation Planning and Project Development (Completed 1997)

Performer(s): Parsons, Brinckerhoff, Quade & Douglas
Sponsor(s): FHWA; Federal Transit Admin. (FTA)

To order:
Jacqueline Jenkins. FHWA , HEPH-1, 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-0106; Fax: 202-366-3409. Email: Jacqueline.Jenkins@dot.gov.

Abstract
The study's purpose was to identify and make available to practitioners innovative and effective public involvement and consensus-building techniques. There were five products: "Public Involvement Techniques for Transportation Decisionmaking" - a collection of short descriptions of more than 100 public involvement techniques (this is available on the Internet); three short case studies of field use of those techniques; and the revision/update of "Improving the Effectiveness of Public Meetings and Hearings," the resource book used in FHWA's basic National Highway Institute (NHI) public involvement course. All of the techniques for improving public involvement are compiled in "Innovations in Public Involvement for Transportation Planning." The three case studies include: 1) "South Sacramento, CA, Light Rail Transit/La Lineal Del Sur," which describes proactive involvement of large and diverse ethnic populations during project development; 2) "Public Involvement at Oregon Department of Transportation," which describes how a State DOT uses a variety of public involvement techniques in both project development and statewide planning; and 3) "Metro Plan (Little Rock, AR) 'Pouring Water on Dry Ground,' " which illustrates how a mid-sized metropolitan planning organization used varied techniques to begin public involvement early in long range transportation planning. "Improving the Effectiveness of Public Meetings and Hearings" was updated to reflect additions to the state of the art since original publication in 1978.

A Look at Our Nation's Highways (Completed 1993)

Performer(s): FHWA
Sponsor(s): FHWA

To order:
Order Nos.: FHWA-PD-94-016; FHWA-PD-94-017; FHWA-PD-94-018.

For more information:
Harold Peaks. FHWA, HEPN-10, 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-1598; Fax: 202-366-3409; Email: Harold.peaks@dot.gov.

Abstract
A series of 3 brochures containing descriptions of 13 highway projects that used creative and thoughtful approaches to help resolve difficult design challenges. Subjects include linking transportation and recreation, preserving urban and historic districts and rebuilding bridges and communities. Titles: Preserving Urban and Historic Districts (#016); Linking Transportation and Recreation (#017); Rebuilding Bridges and Communities (#018).

Public Involvement Techniques for Transportation Decisionmaking (Completed 1996)

Performer(s): Federal Transit Admin. (FTA)
Sponsor(s): FHWA; FTA

To order:
Jacqueline Jenkins. FHWA , HEPH-1, 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-0106; Fax: 202-366-3409; Email: Jacqueline.Jenkins@dot.gov;
URL: http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/resources/pubstats/ (Reports & Stats);
Order Nos.: FHWA-PD-96-031; NTIS No. PB97181085.

Abstract
This is one of five products under "Innovative Techniques for Public Involvement in Transportation Planning and Project Development." An expanded collection of short descriptions of 37 public involvement techniques or groups of related techniques, it also incorporates all techniques in "Innovations in Public Involvement for Transportation Planning," including initial steps to implement groups of related techniques. Three case studies: 1) South Sacramento, CA, Light Rail Transit/La Linea Del Sur (1997); 2) Metro Plan (Little Rock, AR) "Pouring Water on Dry Ground" (1997); and Public Involvement at Oregon Department of Transportation (1997). [This is the product of "Innovative Techniques for Public Involvement in Transportation Planning and Project Development," a project also listed in this appendix.]

A System that Serves Everyone - Attracting Nontraditional Participants into the Regional Transportation Planning Process (Completed 1996)

Performer(s): Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (WASHCOG)
Sponsor(s): FHWA ; WASHCOG

To order:
Jacqueline Jenkins. FHWA, HEPH-1, 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-0106; Fax: 202-366-3409; Email: Jacqueline.Jenkins@dot.gov.

Abstract
In 1995, the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board conducted a public outreach effort among low-income minority and non-English-speaking residents in four communities in Maryland, DC, and Virginia, and senior citizens attending an adult education program in Virginia. The project reached 350 persons through meetings, a traveling van exhibit, and questionnaires. Participants expressed concerns about bus service, fares, pedestrian safety, and the need for better transit information. The report discusses the lessons learned related to the outreach techniques used and the overall approach of target communities and their concerns. "Reaching Out to Everyone: Attracting Nontraditional Participants into the Regional Transportation Planning Process," is a 20-minute videotape made available in fall 1998. It describes the practical lessons learned from an intensive effort to reach a broader range of citizens than have usually participated in its long-range transportation planning. The video can be used by highway agencies nationwide to develop transportation projects that enhance community values and increase public satisfaction with highway projects as a beneficial part of the community.

Transportation Enhancement Conference Notebook (Completed 1994)

Sponsor(s): FHWA

To order:
Harold Peaks. FHWA, HEPH-1, 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-1598; Fax: 202-366-3409; Email: Harold.peaks@dot.gov.

Abstract
The workshop notebook includes a series of issue papers developed to stimulate discussion during small group sessions. It also includes a status report on the implementation of transportation enhancements, and a State-by-State summary.

Visual Database of Transportation Enhancements CD-ROM (Completed 1996)

Performer(s): FHWA
Sponsor(s): FHWA

To order:
Benita Smith. FHWA , HEPE-1, 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-2065; Fax: 202-366-3409; Email: Benita.smith@dot.gov;
Order Nos.: FHWA-PD-96-025; HEP-30/5-96(12M)E.

Abstract
A multimedia database containing more than 200 transportation enhancement projects from around the country on CD-ROM. The photos of nominated and winning projects were submitted for the biennial Excellence in Highway Design Awards from the years 1984-1994. Information about the projects includes a written description, photographs, and some video clips. Updated in 1997 as "Excellence in Highway Design Graphic Database CD." Useful to highway designers and the public.

Environmental Justice

Completed Research:

Case Studies of Socio-Economic and Environmental Justice Issues Associated with Off-site Wetland Mitigation (Completed 1997)

Performer(s): University of Maryland
Sponsor(s): U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA ); FHWA

To order:
Paul Garrett. FHWA, 555 Zang St., Room 400, Lakewood, CO 80228;
Tel: 303-969-5772 ext. 332; Fax: 303-969-6727; Email: Paul.garrett@dot.gov.

Abstract
This effort developed a simple protocol for evaluating the socioeconomic, distributional, and equity issues associated with the relocation of wetlands from project-site habitat to off-site mitigation areas. The protocol analysis was applied in two watershed areas to determine if off-site wetland mitigation and the incentives for such compensation are having socioeconomic and equity impacts.

Cultural, Historic, Archaeological, and Scenic Resources

Ongoing Research:

Evaluate Techniques and Methodologies to Rehabilitate Historic Bridges

Performer(s): Louis Berger and Assoc., Inc.
Sponsor(s): FHWA

For more information:
Bruce Eberle. FHWA , HEPH-20; 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-2060; Fax: 202-366-3409; Email: bruce.eberle@dot.gov.

Abstract
This is a collection of environmental processes and practices that could result in the rehabilitation of historic bridges. This information will be useful as a resource for those seeking to rehabilitate historic bridges.

Completed Research:

Building on the Past, Traveling to the Future: A Preservationist's Guide to the ISTEA Transportation Enhancement Provision (Completed 1995)

Sponsor(s): FHWA ; National Trust for Historic Preservation

To order:
Megan Betts. National Transportation Enhancements Clearinghouse, 1100-17th St., NW., Washington, DC 20036;
Tel: 888-388-6832; Fax: 202-466-3742; URL: http://www.enhancements.org/ or http://www.railtrails.org/ntec/.

Abstract
This is a user-friendly guide to transportation enhancement, describing its history, eligible project categories, current requirements, what to expect when applying for funds, and State contact persons. About half of the book describes the wide variety of historic preservation projects completed as part of the transportation enhancement activities of State Departments of Transportation (DOTs) and the FHWA. The booklet demonstrates what can be accomplished by State DOTs and local groups and emphasizes that historic preservation can help revitalize communities and stimulate economic growth. This guide was developed through a cooperative agreement with the National Trust.

Community Impact Mitigation: Case Studies (Completed 1998)

Performer(s): Louis Berger and Assoc., Inc.
Sponsor(s): FHWA

To order:
Jacqueline Jenkins. FHWA, HEPH-1, 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-0106; Fax: 202-366-3409; Email: Jacqueline.Jenkins@dot.gov
Order Nos.: FHWA-PD-98-024; HEP-40/5-97(20M)E; NTIS No. PB99111254.

Abstract
This includes stories of five major projects, with an ultimate focus on community impacts from proposed transportation projects, including community values, impact mitigation, and the process used to achieve "win-win." Each case study has a slightly different focus: (1) East-West Expressway, Durham, North Carolina- community mitigation and enhancement; (2) I-696, Oak Park, Michigan- community cohesion; (3) Vine Street Expressway, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania- community preservation; (4) I-90, Seattle, Washington- community reconstruction; and (5) I-165, Prichard, Alabama community revitalization. A chronology and lessons learned are provided for each case study.

Considering Cumulative Impacts under the NEPA (Completed 1997)

Performer(s): Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ)
Sponsor(s): CEQ; FHWA

To order:
Council on Environmental Quality. Old Executive Office Bldg., Room 360, Washington, DC 20502;
Tel: 202-456-6224; Fax: 202-456-2710; URL: http://ceq.hss.doe.gov/nepa/ccenepa/ccenepa.htm.

Abstract
This handbook presents the results of research and consultations by the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) concerning the consideration of cumulative effects in analyses prepared under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA). It introduces this complex issue, outlines general principles and useful steps, and provides information on methods of analysis and data sources. It does not establish new requirements for such analyses. This report is not to be considered as CEQ guidance, nor legally binding. More specifically, it provides a framework for advancing environmental impact analysis by addressing cumulative effects in either an environmental assessment (EA) or an environmental impact statement (EIS). The handbook presents practical methods for addressing coincidental effects (adverse or beneficial) on specific resources, ecosystems, and human communities of all related activities, not just the proposed project or alternatives that initiate the assessment process.

Participate in Archeology (Completed 1994)

Performer(s): National Park Service, U.S. Dept. of the Interior (U.S. DOI)
Sponsor(s): Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, and National Park Service, U.S. DOI; U.S. Dept. of Agriculture; U.S. Dept. of the Army; FHWA

To order:
Jacqueline Jenkins. FHWA, HEPH-1, 400 Seventh St., SW., Washington, DC 20590;
Tel: 202-366-0106; Fax: 202-366-3409; Email: Jacqueline.Jenkins@dot.gov.

Abstract
Archaeological sites are both fragile and irreplaceable and are important to our understanding of our nation's heritage. This brochure provides information about how individuals can participate in archeology through reading, visiting museums, visiting field investigations, or even participating in actual fieldwork. State Departments of Transportation are identified as contacts for more information.

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Updated: 11/02/2011
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