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U.S. Department of Transportation

Federal Highway Administration

Subject: INFORMATION: Program Guidance on High Occupancy Vehicle Lanes Date: March 28, 2001
From: Vincent F. Schimmoller
Deputy Executive Director
Reply to
Attn. of:
To: Core Business Unit Program Managers Service Business Unit Directors
Resource Center Directors
Division Administrators
State Directors
Federal lands Highway Division Engineers

Attached is a revised version of the program guidance on high occupancy vehicle (HOV) operations. This guidance supercedes the guidance that was dated April 30, 1999. The program guidance was revised based upon feedback received and issues identified in working with our customers over the past two years. These revisions have been made to provide additional information, clarify issues, and improve its overall value.

The revised program guidance is fundamentally built from the same principles. While decisions to change the operating characteristics of HOV facilities rest with the State or local agency, it is possible that some Federal action will be required for proposals to significantly change the operation of existing HOV lanes. The guidance continues to require a review process that focuses on consistency with the Federal-aid highway program provisions identified in Title 23 of the United States Code (U.S.C.), as well as provisions specified in 49 U.S.C. for coordination with the Federal Transit Administration, including those relating to funding, operational commitments made during the National Environmental Policy Act process, project agreements, transportation planning requirements, and transportation conformity requirements under the Clean Air Act.

Perhaps the most significant addition to the guidance relates to categories of Federal funding that have specific eligibility requirements and regulations that remain in effect even after an HOV lane project is completed. Additional details have been provided to assist in the identification and review of the limitations that exist on the use of Federal funding (see page 12-13). A summary of the regulatory requirements, eligibility issues, funding and participation levels, and limitations related to HOV lanes for the Federal-aid programs that are administered by FHWA is provided as an appendix to the program guidance.

A video conference will be held in April to review the changes that have been made to the program guidance. If you have any questions on the guidance, please contact Jon Obenberger (jon.obenberger@fhwa.dot.gov ) at (202) 366-2221.

Vincent Schimmoller Signature
Vincent F. Schimmoller


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