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Planning for Transportation in Rural Areas

Appendix D: Resources for Rural Transportation Planning

This appendix provides a list of World Wide Web resources, technical and policy references, workshop status reports, and a glossary of transportation planning terms to assist rural transportation practitioners.

A. World Wide Web Resources

1. Federal Resources

US Department of Transportation (USDOT)
http://www.dot.gov

Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS)
http://ntl.bts.gov/

Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
http://www.fhwa.dot.gov

Office of Transportation Technologies
http://www.ott.doe.gov

Federal Transit Administration (FTA)
http://www.fta.dot.gov

ITS Electronic Document Library (FHWA)
http://www.its.dot.gov

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
http://www.faa.gov

ITS Joint Program Office (USDOT)
http://www.its.dot.gov

Federal Railroad Administration (FRA)
http://www.fra.dot.gov

ITS America
http://www.itsa.org

Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21)
http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/tea21/

ITS Cooperative Deployment Network
http://www.nawgits.com/icdn.html

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov

Essential Air Service
http://www.dot.gov/policy/aviation-policy/small-community-rural-air-service/essential-air-service

National Safety Council
http://www.nsc.org

Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP)
http://www.ltap.org

National Transportation Library
http://ntl.bts.gov/

National Scenic Byways Program
http://www.byways.org

FHWA Innovative Finance
http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ipd/finance/index.htm

US Department of Agriculture - Rural Development
http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/nrdp

The Safe Communities Services
http://www.nhtsa.gov/Driving+Safety/Community+Traffic+Safety

US Department of Commerce
http://www.doc.gov

Job Access and Reverse Commute
http://www.fta.dot.gov/grants/13093_3550.html

USDOT and USDA Transportation Toolbox
for Rural Areas and Small Communities
http://ntl.bts.gov/ruraltransport/toolbox/

FHWA Real Estate and Right-of-Way Information
http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/real_estate/

2. National Association Resources

American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)
http:www.aashto.org

American Planning Association (APA)
http://www.planning.org

American Public Transit Association (APTA)
http://www.apta.org

American Public Works Association (APWA)
http://www.apwa.net

American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association (ASLRA)
http://www.aslra.org

Amtrak
http://www.amtrak.com

Association of American Railroads (AAR)
http://www.aar.org

Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (AMPO)
http://www.ampo.org

Community Transportation Association of America (CTAA)
http://www.ctaa.org

American Traffic Safety Services Association (ATSSA)
http://www.atssa.com

Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITSA)
http://www.itsa.org

American Public Transportation Association (APTA)
http://www.apta.com

National Association of Development Organizations (NADO)
http://ww.nado.org

International City/County Management Association (ICMA)
http://www.icma.org

The National Associations Working Group for ITS
http://www.nawgits.com

National Association of Counties (NACO)
http://www.naco.org

Regional Airline Association (RAA)
http://www.raa.org

National Association of Towns & Townships
http://www.natat.org

National Association of County Engineers (NACE)
http://www.nace.org

National League of Cities (NLC)
http://www.nlc.org

National Association of Regional Councils (NARC)
http://www.narc.org

Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC)
http://www.arc.gov

3. State Department of Transportation Web Sites

Alabama
http://www.dot.state.al.us

Montana
http://www.mdt.state.mt.us

Alaska
http://www.dot.state.ak.us

Nebraska
http://www.dor.state.ne.us

Arizona
http://www.dot.state.az.us

Nevada
http://www.nevadadot.com

Arkansas
http://www.ahtd.state.ar.us

New Hampshire
http://www.state.nh.us/dot

California
http://www.dot.ca.gov

New Jersey
http://www.state.nj.us/transportation

Colorado
http://www.dot.state.co.us

New Mexico
http://www.nmshtd.state.nm.us

Connecticut
http://www.state.ct.us/dot

New York
http://www.dot.state.ny.us

Delaware
http://www.state.de.us/deldot

North Carolina
http://www.ncdot.org

Florida
http://www.dot.state.fl.us

North Dakota
http://www.state.nd.us/dot

Georgia
http://www.dot.state.ga.us

Ohio
http://www.dot.state.oh.us

Hawaii
http://www.state.hi.us/dot

Oklahoma
http://www.okladot.state.ok.us

Idaho
http://itd.idaho.gov/

Oregon
http://www.odot.state.or.us

Illinois
http://dot.state.il.us

Pennsylvania
http://www.dot.state.pa.us

Indiana
http://www.ai.org/dot

Rhode Island
http://www.dot.state.ri.us

Iowa
http://www.dot.state.ia.us

South Carolina
http://www.dot.state.sc.us

Kansas
http://www.dot.state.ks.us

South Dakota
http://www.state.sd.us/dot

Kentucky
http://www.kytc.state.ky.us

Tennessee
http://www.tdot.state.tn.us

Louisiana
http://www.dotd.state.la.us

Texas
http://www.dot.state.tx.us

Maine
http://www.state.me.us/mdot

Utah
http://www.sr.ex.state.ut.us

Maryland
http://www.mdot.state.md.us

Vermont
http://www.aot.state.vt.us

Massachusetts
http://www.magnet.state.ma.us/mhd/home.htm

Virginia
http://www.vdot.state.va.us

Michigan
http://www.mdot.state.mi.us

Washington
http://www.wsdot.wa.gov

Minnesota
http://www.dot.state.mn.us

West Virginia
http://www.wvdot.com

Mississippi
http://www.mdot.state.ms.us

Wisconsin
http://www.dot.state.wi.us

Missouri
http://www.modot.state.mo.us

Wyoming
http://wydotweb.state.wy.us

4. Transportation Institutes and Centers

Transportation Research Board (TRB)
http://www.nas.edu/trb/

Rural ITS Project - California Transportation Department (CALTRANS)
http://www.ruralits.org

Surface Transportation Policy Project (STPP)
http://www.transact.org

Colorado Transportation Information Program (COTIP)
http://bechtel.colorado.edu/~xiy/

Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE)
http://www.ite.org

Institute for Transportation Research and Education (ITRE)
http://itre.ncsu.edu

Volpe National Transportation Systems Center
http://www.volpe.dot.gov

ITS Program at Princeton University
http://www.njtide.org/links/index.html

Center of Excellence for Sustainable Development
http://www.sustainable.doe.gov

National Transit Institute
http://policy.rutgers.edu/nti

Institute for Transportation Studies (UC-Berkeley)
http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/ITSL/

Northwestern University Transportation Library
http://www.library.nwu.edu/transportation

Intelligent Transportation Systems On-line
http://www.itsonline.com

Pennsylvania Transportation Institute
http://www.pti.psu.edu

MIT: Center for Transportation Studies
http://web.mit.edu/cts/

The SMART Library
http://ntl.bts.gov/

National Center for Advanced Transportation Technology (NCATT)
http://www.its.uidaho.edu/niatt/

Texas Transportation Institute
http://tti.tamu.edu

Pan-American Institute of Highways
http://www.pih-ipc.org

Center for Urban Transportation Research - University of South Florida
http://www.cutr.eng.usf.edu/

Midwest Regional University Transportation Center - University of Wisconsin-Madison
http://www.mrutc.org/

Mack-Blackwell Transportation Center - University of Arkansas
http://www.cveg.uark.edu/mbtc/

Upper Great Plains Transportation - North Dakota State University
http://www.ugpti.org/

North Central Regional Center for Rural Development - Iowa State University
http://www.ag.iastate.edu/centers/rdev/

B. Useful References for Rural Planning

1. General Planning References

A Guide to Statewide Transportation Planning Under ISTEA. Washington Federal Highway Administration and Federal Transit Administration., D.C.: U.S. Department of Transportation, 1996.

Statewide Transportation Planning, Proceedings of a National Conference, Transportation Research Circular 471. Transportation Research Board. Washington D.C.: TRB, 1997.

Colorado Regional Transportation Planning Guidebook. Colorado Department of Transportation, 1998.

Corridor Planning Guidebook. Idaho Department of Transportation, 1998.

Transportation: Connecting to Today's Rural America. National Association of Development Organizations (NADO), 2000.

The National Park Service - Transportation Planning Guidebook, The National Park Service, 1999.

The Drive to Work: Transportation Issues and Welfare Reform in Rural Areas. Sarah Dewees, Rural Research Institute, 1998.

Rural America's Transportation Network: Issues for the 1990's. Dennis Brown, US Department of Agriculture, 1999. In Rural Development Perspectives, Vol. II, No. 2.

When Rural Communities Lose Passenger Rail Service. Dennis Brown, US Department of Agriculture, 1999. In Rural Development Perspectives, Vol. 12, No. 2.

Highway Investment and Rural Economic Development: An Annotated Bibliography. Dennis Brown, US Department of Agriculture. Bibliographies and Literature of Agriculture No 133, 1999.

Economic Development Through Growth Management: Making the Vision Real. State of Washington, Department of Community Development, Growth Management Division, 1993.

Defining Rural Character and Planning for Rural Lands: A Rural Element Guide. State of Washington, Department of Community, Trade and Economic Development, 1999.

RTPO Transportation for Planning Guidebook. Washington State Department of Transportation, 1998.

Highway Capacity Manual. Third Edition, Special Report 209. Transportation Research Board. Washington, DC: TRB. 1998 Update.

Transportation Planning Handbook. Second Edition. Institute of Transportation Engineers, 1999.

2. Transit References

Rural Transit Service Design and Scheduling. Community Transportation Association of America, 1998.

Bus Scheduling Manual: Traffic & Schedule Preparation. reprinted by the American Public Transit Association, 1982.

Planning Services for Transportation - Handicapped People: Data Collection Manual. Daniel Dornan and David Middendorf, Urban Mass Transportation Administration, 1985.

Guidelines for Transportation Services. American Red Cross, 1987.

Public Transit: Bus, Paratransit and Ridesharing. Transportation Research Board, 1978.

Rural Rides: A Practical Handbook for Starting and Operating a Rural Public Transportation System. Farmers Home Administration, 1978.

Small Transit System Management Handbook. Michigan Department of Transportation, 1985.

Guidebook for Planning Small Urban and Rural Transportation Programs. Jeanne Williams, COMSIS Corporation, 1990.

Community Transportation Reporter. January "Resource Guide" Issue, published annually by the Community Transportation Association of America.

Community Transportation Reporter. August "Buyers' Guide" issue, published annually by the Community Transportation Association of America.

Transit Cooperative Research Program, Report 6: Users' Manual for Assessing Service Delivery Systems for Rural Passenger Transportation. Jon E. Burkhardt, Beth Hamby and Adam T. McGavock, Ecosometrics, Incorporated, Bethesda, MD. In association with ATE Management & Service Company, Inc., Arlington, VA and Urbitran Associates, Inc. New York, NY.

Transit Cooperative Research Program, Report 5: Guidelines for Development of Public Transportation Facilities and Equipment Management Systems. Parsons Brinckerhoff Quade & Douglas, Inc. Philadelphia, PA and New York, NY.

Transit Cooperative Research Program, Report 3: Workbook for Estimating Demand for Rural Passenger Transportation. SG Associates, Inc. Annandale, VA with Leigh, Scott & Cleary, Inc. Tahoe City, CA and C.M. Research, Inc. Little Rock, AR.

3. Transportation Finance References

Serving Rural America - US Department of Transportation Rural Program Guide. US Department of Transportation, 1999.

Financing the Statewide Plan: A Guidebook.Federal Highway Administration, Office of Statewide Planning, 1999.

Non Traditional Funds for Community Transportation. Janet McGlynn, Community Transit Magazine, Jan. - Feb. 1999.

4. Public Consultation References

Transportation Action: A Local Input Model to Engage Community Transportation Planning. North Central Regional Center for Rural Development, US Department of Transportation, 1997. Publication No. FHWA-SA-97-096.

Hear Every Voice: A guide to Public Involvement at Minnesota Department of Transportation. Minnesota Department of Transportation June 1999.

Customer-Based Quality in Transportation. National Cooperative Highway Research Program Report 376.K. Stein-Hudson, et al., Transportation Research Board, 1995.

Innovations in Public Involvement for Transportation Planning. Federal Highway Administration, 1994.

5. Intelligent Transportation Systems References

Transportation Planning and ITS: Putting the Pieces Together. Sarah J. Siweck & Associates, prepared for FHWA and available from the Federal Highway Administration ITS Electronic Document Library.

Corridor Planning and Feasibility Analysis - Business Plan and Marking Strategy. (Colorado Department of Transportation, Deleuw, Cather & Company), 1996.

Intelligent Transportation System Benefits. FHWA-OP-99-012, EDL #8323, available from the Federal Highway Administration ITS Electronic Document Library.

Intelligent Transportation Systems, Real World Benefits. FHWA-JPO-98-018, available from the Federal Highway Administration ITS Electronic Document Library. Access Management References.

6. Access Management References

Access Management: Lessons From Fourteen Years in Colorado. Demosthenes, Phillip. Paper prepared for the 1996 National Access Management Conference in Vail, Colorado.

An Overview of Access Management at Selected State DOTs.Geiger, David, et. al. Paper prepared for the 1996 National Access Management Conference in Vail, Colorado.

The National Highway System--Preserving Mobility for Tomorrow.Gorman, Robert. Paper prepared for the 1993 National Access Management Conference in Vail, Colorado.

Transportation and Land Development. Institute of Transportation Engineers, 1988.

Access Management on Suburban Roads. Levinson, Herbert, Transportation Quarterly, Summer 1994.

Functional Integrity of the Highway System. Layton, Robert, Background Paper #1, prepared for the Oregon Department of Transportation, Oregon State University, Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering, Corvallis, Oregon, August 1996.

Access Management for Streets and Highways. U.S. Department of Transportation, Implementation Package Report FHWA-IP-82-3, Washington, DC, June 1982.

First Annual Access Management Conference Proceedings. U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration. Vail Colorado, FHWA-PD-94-010, Washington, DC, 1994.

7. Cycling and Pedestrian References

Guide for the Development of Bicycle Facilities. American Association of State and Highway Transportation Officials, 1999.

Design and Safety of Pedestrian Facilities: A Recommended Practice of the Institute of Transportation Engineers. Institute of Transportation Engineers, 1998.

Review of Planning Guidelines and Design Standards for Bicycle Facilities.Institute of Transportation Engineers, 1997.

Oregon Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan. Oregon Department of Transportation, 1995.

Pedestrian Design Guidelines Notebook. Portland, OR, Office of Transportation Engineering and Development, Pedestrian Program, 1997.

Pedestrian Facilities Guidebook: Incorporating Pedestrians Into Washington's Transportation System. Washington State Department of Transportation, Puget Sound Regional Council, Association of Washington Cities, and County Road Administration Board, 1997.

National Bicycling and Walking Study - A Final Report. US Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, 1994.

C.Working Groups on Rural Transportation

The following reports the progress of some recent working groups involved with rural transportation planning.

The Data and Information Exchange Working Group announced the press release of its completed website: Rural and Agricultural Transportation Data and Information Resources. This website is located at http://ntl.bts.gov/ruraltransport/ and contains over 800 links on freight, passenger travel and tourism, safety, economic and community development, the environment, and energy usage. The Working Group plans to monitor how many people use it and will investigate different methods for promotion of the web site, including development of rolodex cards. During the next meeting, the Working Group will also present recommendations on how the website may be maintained in the future.

The Rural Freight Working Group (RFWG) discussed a number of projects. USDA and USDOT have agreed to jointly support an annual survey and the development of a database by the Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute (UGPTI) on regional and short line railroad operations. The Working Group reported that total annual funding for this activity is $80,000, with USDA and USDOT-Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) agreeing to share the expenses each year.

The Community Development Working Grouphascompleted a digital toolbox for rural transportation. The digital toolbox, designed for rural customers, is a user-friendly website called "Transportation Toolbox for Rural Areas and Small Communities." The website contains information on a wide range of USDA and USDOT programs, including the components of the USDOT Rural Initiative and programs from such USDA programs as Rural Housing and Rural Development. The website address is:

http://ntl.bts.gov/ruraltransport/toolbox/.

D. Glossary of Transportation Planning Terms

Alternative: One of a number of specific proposals, alignments, options, design choices, etc., in a study.

American Association of State Highway Officials (AASHTO): An association of state departments of transportation, the AASHTO advocates multimodal transportation by providing technical services, information and policy advice to member departments, the U.S. Department of Transportation and Congress. The AASHTO is influential in national transportation policy decision-making.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): The legislation defining the responsibilities of and requirements for transportation providers to make transportation accessible to individuals with disabilities.

Arterial Highway: Arterial highways serve major traffic movements or major traffic corridors. While they may provide access to abutting land, their primary function is to serve traffic moving through the area.

Average Daily Traffic Volume: The average number of vehicles that travel on a given road during the day. As defined by traffic engineers, it is the total traffic volume during a given time period in whole days (24-hour periods), greater than one day and less than one year, divided by the number of days in that time period.

Bicycle Path (Bike Path): A bikeway physically separated from motorized vehicular traffic by an open space or barrier and either within the highway right-of-way or within an independent right-of-way.

Bridge Inspection Program (BIP): A FHWA program that inventories and inspects the condition of all bridges in the Federal-Aid Highway system. An evaluation of each bridge's load-carrying capacity is performed to determine if any deficiencies exist, and if necessary, appropriate action such as warning signs, bridge closing, rehabilitation or replacement, is taken.

Capacity: The maximum number of vehicles that can reasonably be expected to pass over a lane or a roadway during a given time period under prevailing roadway and traffic conditions. Typically, the maximum expressway capacity for automobiles is 2,000 vehicles per lane per hour.

Capital Improvement Projects: Refers to higher-cost transportation improvements, typically involving major infrastructure construction such as adding travel lanes to existing roads and building new roadways, interchanges, or railroads.

Central Business District (CBD): The downtown retail trade and commercial area of a city or an area of very high land valuation, traffic flow, and concentration of retail business offices, theaters, hotels and services.

Collector Highway: Collector highways are those highways that link local highways to arterial highways.

Collectors: In rural areas, routes serving intra-county, rather than statewide travel. In urban areas, streets providing direct access to neighborhoods as well as direct access to arterials.

Comprehensive Plan: The general, inclusive, long-range statement of the future development of a community. The plan is typically a map accompanied by description and supplemented by policy statements that direct future capital improvements in an area.

Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program (CMAQ): Federal money contained in TEA-21 for projects and activities that reduce congestion and improve air quality.

Controlled Access: Partial access restriction that gives preference to through traffic. Also provides for connections to selected public routes and to certain other adjacent locations where vehicles can enter or leave a roadway safely without interfering with through traffic.

Corridor: Land between two termini within which traffic, transit, land use, topography, environment, and other characteristics are evaluated for transportation purposes.

Demand Responsive Transportation: Transportation services that are flexible in terms of schedule and locations, such as taxis.

Design Criteria: Established state and national standards and procedures that guide the establishment of roadway layouts, alignments, geometry, and dimensions for specified types of roadways in certain defined conditions. The principal design criteria for roadways are traffic volume, design speed, the physical characteristics of vehicles, the classification of vehicles, and the percentage of various vehicle classification types that use the roadway.

Environmental Assessment (EA): A document prepared early in a planning process that evaluates the potential environmental consequences of a project or activity. An assessment includes the same topical areas as an EIS, but only assesses the effects of a preferred action, and in less detail than an EIS. An EA results in a decision, based on an assessment of the degree of impact of an action, that an EIS is necessary, or that an action will have no significant effect and a finding of no significant impact (FONSI) can be made.

Environmental Impact Statement (EIS): An EIS is a full disclosure, detailed report which, pursuant to Section 102(2)C of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), establishes the need for the proposed action, identifies alternatives with the potential to meet the identified need, analyzes the anticipated environmental consequences of identified alternatives, and discusses how adverse effects may be mitigated. An EIS is prepared in two stages: a draft statement which is made available to the public for review and a final statement which is revised on the basis of comments made on the draft statement.

Environmental Overview: A beginning inventory or summary assessment of environmental features in a study area, usually performed during systems planning or preliminary environmental activities. From this preliminary information, the environmental impacts of the study alternatives will be determined. This overview may sometimes be referred to as Environmental Screening.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA): The Federal agency charged with developing and enforcing national environmental policies. The EPA oversees federal policy regarding air and water pollution, among other topics.

Federal Aid Project: An activity, study, survey, project, or other work related to transportation authorized in advance by the Federal Highway Administration, Federal Transit Administration, or other federal agency, and which is paid for either partially or fully by public funds.

Federal Highway Administration (FHWA): The FHWA deals with highway transportation in its broadest scope, administering all Federal highway transportation programs, including FLHP.

Federal Lands Highway Program (FLHP): The FLHP funds transportation system investment for transportation facilities providing access to and within National Forests, National Parks, National Refuges, Indian Lands and other public lands.

Federal Transit Administration (FTA): The FTA funds the development of mass transportation systems such as subway and bus systems.

Free Access: The lowest condition of access control on state highways which allows an unlimited number of private driveway connections, intersections at grade, field entrances, or other land service linkages that give vehicles or pedestrians access to the highways.

Functional Roadway Classification: The organization of roadways into a hierarchy based on the character of service provided. Typical classifications include arterial, local, and collection roadways.

Geographic Information System (GIS): A computer-based system that links the geographic location of map features to text information or databases.

Geometric Design: Design that deals with the dimensions of a facility and the relationships of its features such as alignment, profile, grades, widths, sight distances, clearances, and slopes as distinguished from structural design which is concerned with thickness, composition of materials, and load-carrying capacity.

High-Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Lane: A lane designated exclusively for vehicles carrying two or more persons, such as buses, carpools, and vans.

Historic Resource: A building, structure, site, district, or object that is significant in American history, architecture, archaeology, engineering, and culture.

Hazardous Waste: An environmental impact category encompassing all types of permitted and unregulated materials, sites, and substances which require prudent handling and treatment to prevent harm or danger.

Impacts: Positive or negative effects upon the natural or human environment resulting from transportation projects.

Indirect Effects (see Secondary Effects): Effects that can be expected to result from a given action and that occur later in time or further removed in distance, yet are reasonably foreseeable in the future; for example, induced changes to land use patterns, population density, or growth rate.

Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS): Refers to the use of advanced technologies (such as traffic sensors and communications equipment) to improve transportation operations.

Intermodal: A mode is a particular form of transportation, such as automobile, transit, carpool, ship, and bicycle. Intermodal refers to connections between modes.

Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA): Federal legislation that mandated the way transportation decisions were to be made and funded. This landmark $155 billion federal legislation signed into law in December 1991, called for broad changes in transportation decision-making, and included major revisions to metropolitan and statewide planning processes. ISTEA emphasized diversity and balance of modes, as well as the preservation of existing systems over construction of new facilities. The law expired in September 1997, and was followed by TEA-21.

Level of Service: A rating system used by traffic engineers to determine a roadway's ability to provide adequate capacity for the volume of traffic (number of vehicles) using the road.

Limited-Access Highway: A highway that has access to it restricted to designated points such as interchanges.

Long Range Transportation Plan: Identifies regional transportation goals, issues, and needs and defines the direction for regional planning, programming, and project development over a 20-year period.

Major Investment Study (MIS): The MIS is an evaluation of the effectiveness (such as level of use and ability to meet the mobility needs of the public) and cost-effectiveness of alternative transportation investments in attaining local, State, and regional goals and objectives for the metropolitan or rural area. The study uses a cooperative process that leads to a decision on the design concept and fiscal scope of an investment(s). The recommended design concept(s) may result in additional development as a transportation project(s).

Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO): A planning group designated for each urban area with a population of 50,000 or more. Members include both private citizens and local government officials. An MPO addresses Federal aid planning mandates by producing local area transportation plans or transportation improvement programs on an annual or biannual basis, or by employing other strategies that make existing systems more efficient.

Mitigation Measures: Specific design commitments made during the environmental evaluation and study process that serve to moderate or lessen impacts deriving from the proposed action. These measures may include planning and development commitments, environmental measures, right-of-way improvements, and agreements with resource or other agencies to effect construction or post construction action.

Modal Split: The proportion of trips made on the roadway versus other modes of travel such as the public transit system.

Multimodal: Facilities serving more than one transportation mode or a transportation network comprised of a variety of modes.

Multimodal Facility: A transportation facility built to accommodate two or more types of transportation modes (e.g., bus/rail terminal).

Multiple Use/Joint Development: The use of transportation facilities and highway rights-of-way and corridor areas for purposes additional to and compatible with the designed movement of transportation conveyances (such as vehicles on the traveled way of a roadway). Examples include recreation and park areas, public art, scenic and wildlife resource enhancement, non-residential developments, and parking facilities.

National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA): Established by Congress in 1969, NEPA requires that Federal Agencies consider environmental matters when considering to carry out federal actions. This could include the preparation of environmental assessments (EAs) or environmental impact statement (EIS) for projects with the potential to result in significant effects on the environment.

National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA): Established by Congress in 1966, the NHPA sets a national policy for the protection of historic and archeological sites and outlines responsibilities for Federal and state governments to preserve the nation's history.

No-Build Alternative (also known as "No-Action Alternative"): Option of maintaining the status quo by not building transportation improvements. Usually results in eventual deterioration of existing transportation conditions. Serves as a baseline for comparison of "Build" Alternatives.

Origin-Destination Survey: A survey conducted of the traffic using the study area roadway system to determine/document current traffic patterns.

Paratransit Service: Transit service for individuals with disabilities who are unable to use the fixed route public transit system.

Park and Ride: A transportation option whereby commuters park their cars in designated lots and complete their trips using public transportation or joining other commuters in a high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) (e.g., buses, subways, and carpool/vanpool).

Peak Hour: Time when a highway carries its highest volume of traffic, usually the morning or evening "rush" period when commuters travel to and from work.

Preliminary Engineering: Early phases of technical studies undertaken to determine all relevant aspects of transportation location, to identify feasible route alternatives or design options, and to assess various cost and benefit parameters before advancing the project into more detailed final design development.

Prime Farmland: Land that has the best combination of physical and chemical characteristics for producing food, feed, fiber, forage, oil seed, and other agricultural crops with minimum inputs of fuel, fertilizer, pesticides, and labor and without intolerable soil erosion, as determined by the Secretary of Agriculture. It does not include land that is already committed to urban development or storage.

Problem Statement: A concise narrative, prepared at the outset of a project or study or as part of a project needs study, defining the fundamental situation or circumstance to be solved. A problem statement will generally describe a particular situation in which an expected level of performance is not being achieved, and will list one or more important factors that cause or contribute to the unacceptable performance.

Productive Agricultural Land: Any land used for production, commercial purposes, crops, livestock, and livestock products, including the processing or retail marketing of such crops, livestock, or livestock products if more than 50 percent of such proposed merchandised products are produced by the farm operator.

Programming: A general term to refer to a series of activities carried out by planners, including data assessment, appraisal of identified planning needs, and consideration of available or anticipated fiscal resources to result in the drawing up, scheduling, and planning of a list of identified transportation improvements for a given period of time.

Public Hearing: A meeting designed to afford the public the fullest opportunity to express support of or opposition to a transportation project in an open forum at which a verbatim record (transcript) of the proceedings is kept.

Public Meeting: An announced meeting conducted by transportation officials designed to facilitate participation in the decision-making process and to assist the public in gaining an informed view of a proposed project at any level of the transportation project development process. Also, such a gathering may be referred to as a public information meeting.

Qualitative Analysis: A general concept which categorizes a process used in certain types of environmental or route location studies where multiple factors are compared in a systematic and comprehensive manner on the basis of sound judgment. Factors analyzed by using a qualitative analysis are such that they cannot be measured in monetary terms, have no apparent common denominators, and are not readily quantifiable.

Quantitative Analysis: The process used in certain economic, cost-benefit, engineering, or traffic studies where multiple factors, elements, and/or outcomes are evaluated and compared by the use of measurable data. Certain mathematical models, formulas, numerical indices, rankings, and value matrices may be used to assist with such a process.

Resource Agencies: The group of federal and state agencies or commissions which have various regulatory, jurisdictional, and/or administrative responsibilities in a variety of subject areas that are part of the transportation project development process. These agencies and commissions are involved in participating in project meetings, reviewing and evaluating studies, commenting on documents, and granting certain approvals.

Right-of-Way: Land, property, or interest therein acquired or devoted to transportation purposes, including construction, maintenance, operations, and protection of a facility.

Safety Improvements: Roadway maintenance activities and smaller construction projects that correct conditions occurring on or alongside an existing highway. Typically involves minor widening, resurfacing, regrading roadsides, hazard or obstacle elimination, guardrail installation, and miscellaneous maintenance.

Secondary Effects: A general term to define impacts which are caused by a specific action and which take place later in time or further removed in distance but are still reasonably foreseeable. Secondary effects can be indeterminate, may not be easily recognized, and can be difficult to identify and evaluate.

Single-Occupancy Vehicle (SOV): A car with no passengers.

State-Funded Project: The design or construction of an improvement which is funded entirely with state highway or bridge funds.

State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP): A list of projects that includes all transportation initiatives proposed for federal funding within a state for a three-year period. It includes regionally significant projects; metropolitan transportation improvement projects are incorporated into the STIP without modification.

Study Area: A geographic area selected and defined at the outset of engineering or environmental evaluations, which is sufficiently adequate in size to address all pertinent project matters occurring within it.

Study (or Project) Limits: The physical end points of a proposed project or study, usually designated at geographic or municipal boundaries, at intersections, at roadway segments where cross sections change, or at the beginning or end of numbered state traffic routes.

Study (or Project) Need Statement: A statement of specific transportation problems and/or deficiencies that have resulted in the search for improvements. Study (or project) needs are typically based on technical information and analyses.

Study (or Project) Purpose: A broad statement of the overall intended objective to be achieved by a proposed transportation improvement.

Surface Transportation Program (STP): A transportation funding program within TEA-21. STP funds may be used for roadway construction and improvements, operational improvement, transportation systems, bicycle and pedestrian facilities, transit, ridesharing programs and facilities and transportation planning and studies.

Transit Center (or Transit Station): A mode transfer facility serving transit buses and other modes, such as automobiles and pedestrians. In the context of this document, transit centers are either on-line or off-line facilities with respect to the HOV lane.

Traffic Analysis Zone (TAZ): A subdivision of the project (or study) area for which demographic data are collected in order to estimate traffic volume. The arrival and departure pattern of the estimated traffic is also organized by TAZs.

Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21): Signed by President Clinton in June 1998, this Federal transportation legislation retains and expands many of the programs created in 1991 under ISTEA. The legislation reauthorizes Federal surface transportation programs for six years (1998-2003), and significantly increases overall funding for transportation.

Transportation Improvement Program (TIP): A three-year, prioritized program of transportation projects within a metropolitan or regional planning area proposed for federal funding. It includes all regionally significant projects, planning research activities and emergency relief projects.

Travel Demand Management (TDM): A strategy for reducing congestion and pollution by reducing vehicle volume through such techniques as ridesharing and carpooling.

United States Department of Transportation (USDOT): Establishes the nation's overall transportation policy. Under its umbrella there are ten administrations whose jurisdictions include highway planning, development and construction; urban mass transit; railroads; aviation; and the safety of waterways, ports, highways, and oil and gas pipelines.

Wetlands: Those areas that are inundated or saturated by surface water or groundwater at a frequency or duration sufficient to support, and under normal circumstances do support, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated soil conditions. Wetlands generally include swamps, marshes, bogs, and similar areas.

Zoning: The division of a land area into districts and the public regulation of the character and intensity of use of the land and improvements thereon.

Updated: 04/02/2014
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