Executive Summary Chapter
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This document is a summary of the report to Congress titled: "1999
Status of the Nation's Highways, Bridges, and Transit: Conditions and
Performance" (C&P report). The C&P report is intended to provide
Congress and other decision makers with an objective appraisal of highway,
bridge and transit system characteristics, finance, physical conditions,
operational performance, and future capital investment requirements.
This edition of the C&P report is the fourth in the series that combines
information on the Nation's highway and transit systems. The report includes
new sections devoted to personal mobility and safety, and expanded analysis of
future investment requirements, which are summarized in this document. The full
report also contains a series of appendices on special topics including
Interstate needs, intermodal freight connectors, asset management, Federal
lands highways, Federal highway safety programs, and the costs and benefits of
transit. The conditions, performance, and future investment requirements of the
National Highway System are examined separately in a special appendix, that
parallels the structure of the main body of the report.
As in previous versions, the future investment requirements analysis in this
version of the C&P report focuses on 20-year maintain and
improve scenarios for highways, bridges, and transit systems.
Supplementary technical material has been added to more fully explain the
derivation of these estimates. This includes a chapter on sensitivity analysis,
which identifies the effects that changing some of the underlying assumptions
in the analysis would have on the results. This edition also includes some
limited discussion of the potential impacts of other levels of investment aside
from those identified in the main scenarios.
The highway investment requirement scenarios were developed using the
Highway Economic Requirements System (HERS), an economic analysis tool
introduced in the 1995 C&P report. This tool seeks to minimize highway user
costs (travel time costs, vehicle operating costs, and crash costs), agency
maintenance costs, and societal costs, as it achieves the defined scenario
The transit investment requirement scenarios were developed using the
Transit Economic Requirements Model (TERM), an economic analysis tool
introduced in the 1997 C&P report. TERM evaluates transportation system
user benefits (travel time savings, reduced highway-user costs, and improved
mobility), transit agency benefits and social benefits.
The bridge investment requirements were developed using the Bridge Needs and
Investment Process (BNIP), an engineering analysis tool. BNIP is being phased
out in favor of the National Bridge Investment Analysis System (BIAS), which
will add an economic component to the bridge analyses.