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68 I N T E R N AT I O N A L P E R S P E C T I V E S O N R O A D P R I C I N G BOX 4 Recommendations from CURBING GRIDLOCK FEDERAL GOVERNMENT STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS Congress should extend the pilot program when the Inter- State and local governments should adopt statutes sim- modal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA) is ilar to the California law requiring "cashing out" reauthorized in 1997. employee parking. Public officials (state, local, or regional depending on who has authority) should be given discretion RESEARCH PRIORITIES regarding the use of revenues collected by congestion Careful and extensive evaluation of congestion pricing pricing pilot projects. programs introduced in the United States is the highest Congress should allow congestion pricing on urban priority for research. Research is also encouraged in Interstates or other federal-aid routes if called for in other areas as follows. state implementation plans (as required by the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments) or if local or state author- The impact of congestion pricing on business ities can demonstrate the need to manage congestion logistics and commercial carriers. on these facilities through pricing. The extent to which transit services and revenues The federal government should provide additional could be improved as a result of congestion pricing incentives to encourage pricing on more than just single and how this might benefit lower-income users. facilities by giving substantial grants or additional Development of improved models for simulating housing, transit, or community development funds to household travel changes in response to pricing and any metropolitan area with significant congestion that other travel demand management strategies. is willing to experiment with broader pricing strategies, Improved measures of congestion. for example, a regional parking management program. Efficiency and productivity benefits of conges- In cases where high-occupancy-vehicle (HOV) lanes tion pricing. on federal-aid facilities have clearly failed to induce Development of a program to ensure that the ridesharing, or in cases where local officials can show United States learns from current and emerging exper- that adding congestion pricing on existing HOV lanes iments with road pricing in other parts of the world. would not undermine the region's HOV strategy, exper- Measurement of long-term land use changes that iments should be allowed that would convert under- might occur in response to congestion pricing. used HOV lanes to tolled lanes while allowing HOV Studies of how the benefits and burdens of poli- users to continue to travel at no charge. cies such as congestion pricing shift over time through Because of the unique opportunities offered by con- labor, land, and retail markets. gestion pricing projects to learn about behavioral Constituency building and the local politics of responses to variable pricing and how they affect travel implementation. demand, the federal government should bear the bulk The efficacy of distributing tradable permits to of the cost of extensive evaluations. all motorists for driving during peak periods as an Matching project development grants should be alternative to charging congestion tolls (this option made available to local governments, states, toll would allow motorists to be "bought off" of congested authorities, and metropolitan planning organizations routes rather than being "tolled off"). funded out of the congestion pricing pilot program sec- tion of ISTEA. Source: Transportation Research Board and Federal law should treat the tax-exempt status of Commission on Behavioral and Social Sciences and parking and transit subsidies equally and should Education 1994, Vol. 1, pp. 915. require employers who provide parking subsidies to give employees the option of taking this subsidy in the form of cash. the United States reflects the extent of urban decentral- ventions and trade shows. They have generally all been ization in America over the past several decades. Many losing employment and retail sales relative to suburban American downtowns are thriving, but those that are areas that provide ample freeway access and acres of successful have given greater emphasis to tourism and free parking. In an environment of vigorous competi- economic activities that cater to visitors, such as con- tion for commercial employment and retail trade, few