The Intelligent Transportation Society of America released Wednesday its recommendations for this year’s federal surface transportation authorization legislation with a focus on increased funding for ITS deployment, operations, system management, green infrastructure, next-generation transportation solutions, and a "Smart Towns & City Streets" initiative. View the full story in the April 10 AASHTO Journal.
Mainstreaming Operations Into Transportation
Business Plan: Mainstreaming Systems Operations in State DOTs (PDF)
This report presents a five-year business plan to "mainstream" systems operations and management in state DOTs. It describes briefly the Subcommittee's 2005 workshop activities in production of the Plan. While the plan is focused principally within the AASHTO community, close cooperation with other entities fostering mainstream, such as the National Transportation Operations Coalition, TRB, FHWA, and National Traffic Incident Management Coalition is included. The Workshop and Business Plan were developed as part of NCHRP Project 20-7 (188).
The 21st Century Operations-Oriented State DOT(PDF)
Guide for Emergency Transportation Operations
These guides are designed to support the development of a formal program for the improved management of traffic incidents, natural disasters, security events, and other emergencies on the highway system. It outlines a coordinated, performance-oriented, all-hazard approach called “Emergency Transportation Operations.” The concept of this guidance has grown out of discussion within the National Transportation Incident Management Coalition (NTIMC) that brings together the combined perspectives of the transportation and public safety communities.
Optimizing the System
Download the report now! (PDF)
Optimizing is defined as "improving or developing to the greatest extent possible." Optimizing the system describes the mission embraced by most state departments of transportation as they seek the ultimate in the safe and efficient operation of the transportation network we have today.
The need to optimize our transportation system springs from the recognition that growth in demand has far outstripped our ability to provide adequate new capacity. Between 1980 and 1999, the number of vehicle miles traveled on America’s roads and highways increased by 76 percent, while capacity grew by only 1.5 percent. Expert analysis estimates that less than half of the new roadway that was needed to handle even current levels of traffic was added in that time.
Our goal must be to make the system work better, safer, and smarter, to both save lives and save time for our citizens. There is no single solution to this challenge, there are many, from the rapid clearing of traffic accidents, to advising motorists of traffic tie-ups or weather delays, to improving highway work zones for the safety of both drivers and workers. There is a tremendous amount of technology that can be deployed, and models that can be used. This AASHTO report showcases examples of what is working well in states across the country.
There are also exciting opportunities within our reach in the next decade. AASHTO is working with the nation’s auto industry and the federal government to create a new capability in which vehicles collect and communicate traffic and roadway information to other drivers and to transportation operators. The potential payoffs—in lives saved and delays avoided—are dramatic. The technology is achievable, the incentives are high, and all that is needed is the commitment to work cooperatively to achieve this quantum leap forward.
More Links and Information
FHWA: Traffic Congestion and Reliability: Linking Solutions to Problems
The Traffic Congestion and Reliability: Linking Solutions to Problems Report provides a snapshot of congestion in the United States by summarizing recent trends in congestion, highlighting the role of unreliable travel times in the effects of congestion, and describing efforts to curb congestion. In particular, the Report develops a framework for understanding the various sources of congestion, the ways to address congestion by targeting these sources, and performance measures for monitoring trends in congestion.
TTI: 2007 Urban Mobility Report
Traffic congestion continues to worsen in American cities of all sizes, creating a $78 billion annual drain on the U.S. economy in the form of 4.2 billion lost hours and 2.9 billion gallons of wasted fuel—that's 105 million weeks of vacation and 58 fully-loaded supertankers.
These are among the key findings of the Texas Transportation Institute's 2007 Urban Mobility Report. Improvements to the methodology used to measure congestion nationwide have produced the most detailed picture yet of a problem that is growing worse in all 437 of the nation's urban areas. The current report is based on 2005 figures, the most recent year for which complete data was available.
Transportation Safety Advancement Group
The Transportation Safety Advancement Group (TSAG) serves as a forum for providing public safety technologies guidance to the US Department of Transportation, ITS Joint Program Office. TSAG is an assembly of multi-discipline public safety professionals sharing a common interest in its technology for public safety charter. TSAG volunteers represent eight communities of interest including Academic & Research, Emergency Communications, Emergency Management, Emergency Medical Services, Fire & Rescue, Law Enforcement, Technology & Telematics and Transportation Operations.
Through alliances with like-interest partners, TSAG works to advance a national dialogue on transportation and public safety, toward optimizing traveler, operator and emergency responder safety on our nation’s roadways. www.tsag-its.org.