U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
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Federal Highway Administration Research and Technology
Coordinating, Developing, and Delivering Highway Transportation Innovations
This magazine is an archived publication and may contain dated technical, contact, and link information.
|Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-2006-003 Vol. 69 No. 5 Date: March/April 2006|
Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-2006-003 Vol. 69 No. 5
Date: March/April 2006
Due to increasing awareness of the impact of highways on the surrounding environment and communities, transportation agencies are exploring context sensitive solutions (CSS) when building and renovating roadways. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) defines CSS as "a collaborative, interdisciplinary approach that involves all stakeholders to develop a transportation facility that fits its physical setting and preserves scenic, aesthetic, historic, and environmental resources, while maintaining safety and mobility."
Formerly known as "context sensitive design," CSS stresses the importance of working with community representatives to balance local, regional, and national transportation needs with the historic and natural environment and the needs of the community. This collaborative approach benefits agencies because it results in effective and timely decisions, attainment of public trust and support, positive relationships with resource agencies, delivery of safe and financially feasible project solutions, and improvement to the overall project delivery process.
Through a new course, Context Sensitive Solutions (#142050), the National Highway Institute (NHI) aims to further increase awareness of how to apply CSS in transportation planning, design, construction, and maintenance. The goal is to educate the transportation community about the human/social, natural/cultural, technical, and organizational contexts that should be considered when developing and implementing transportation solutions.
The course provides participants with the tools and techniques necessary to employ the CSS approach effectively to deliver timely and successful transportation projects. The format includes lectures, group and individual problem-solving exercises, interactive discussions, and references to publications and software.
Upon completing the course, participants will be able to do the following:
|New Jersey Transit's Rutherford train station at Station Square (shown here) used CSS to reconnect the main street with the station, improve bicycle access, and make the station a focal point for new infill development. The hub of the project is a new modern roundabout in front of the station, combined with pedestrian improvements along the streets that act as "spokes" leading from the station throughout the downtown.|
The course targets a broad audience that includes transportation planners; environmental specialists; highway, bridge, construction, and design engineers; and managers of Federal, State, and local highway transportation agencies.
For course scheduling, contact Sherron Monts at 703-235-0534. For more information, visit NHI's Web site at www.nhi.fhwa.dot.gov. To learn more about other NHI courses, consult the course catalog available on the NHI Web site or contact NHI at 703-235-0500 (phone) or 703-235-0593 (fax). For more information on CSS, please visit www.fhwa.dot.gov/csd/.