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Community Impact Assessment: A Quick Reference for Transportation

Publication No. FHWA-PD-96-036 - September 1996

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Cover of Community Impact Assessment: A Quick Reference for Transportation

Purpose: Why was this guide prepared?

This guide was written as a quick primer for transportation professionals and analysts who assess the impacts of proposed transportation actions on communities. It outlines the community impact assessment process, highlights critical areas that must be examined, identifies basic tools and information sources, and stimulates the thought-process related to individual projects.

In the past, the consequences of transportation investments on communities have often been ignored or introduced near the end of a planning process, reducing them to reactive considerations at best. The goals of this primer are to increase awareness of the effects of transportation actions on the human environment and emphasize that community impacts deserve serious attention in project planning and development—attention comparable to that given the natural environment. Finally, this guide is intended to provide some tips for facilitating public involvement in the decisionmaking process.


This guidebook was prepared by the following State and local transportation professionals, and in consultation with the Federal Highway Administration, Office of Environment and Planning, with assistance from Apogee Research, Inc. and Parsons Brinckerhoff Quade Douglas, Inc.:

Mr. William Brock
North Carolina DOT
Mr. Greg King
California DOT
Mr. Buddy Cunill
Florida DOT
Ms. Judith Lindsey-Foster
Maine DOT
Mr. Steve Dockter
Columbus, Georgia
Dept of Community & Economic Devl
Mr. Donald Sparklin
Maryland State Highway
Mr. John Isom
Arkansas State Highway &
Transportation Department
Ms. Barbara Stevens
Illinois DOT

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Updated: 2/9/2015
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