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SUMMARY A Guidebook for Corridor-Based Statewide Transportation Planning Purpose of the Statewide Corridor Planning Guidebook The primary purposes of this Guidebook are to Provide practitioners with a strategic approach for initiating a multimodal, corridor-based statewide transportation planning process and Apply the results of corridor planning studies and analyses in making decisions about future investments in transportation facilities and systems. The primary focus of the Guidebook is on the beginning and end of the statewide corri- dor planning (SWCP) process: Selecting and defining statewide and regionally significant corridors and Using corridor analysis findings and other statewide planning data to develop a long-range statewide transportation plan that includes investment and non-investment strategies. Less attention is given to the middle phase of the process--corridor studies and analysis-- since it is already well defined and familiar to state DOT planners. Content The SWCP Guidebook provides practitioner's with Reasons why statewide corridor planning is an approach that has proven useful to transporta- tion planners; A framework for conducting statewide corridor planning; Technical guidance on the activities that transportation planners can follow to develop an SWCP approach to statewide transportation planning; An application of technical guidance in a hypothetical state; A list of useful references; Examples from state DOTs of how key steps of the planning process have been implemented; and Additional technical guidance on incorporating corridor analysis, public transportation, freight transportation, economic development, and travel demand modeling into the SWCP process. SWCP Process A corridor planning approach is a departure from a systems-wide or project-based approach used by many states. The SWCP approach places a greater focus on system preser- vation for the most significant transportation corridors and on modes and facilities of 1

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2 A Guidebook for Corridor-Based Statewide Transportation Planning statewide and/or regional significance. The steps necessary for a multimodal SWCP process are as follows. 1. Establish organizing principles and institutional structure: Establish process guidelines, Utilize or adopt transportation goals, Identify common data sources and analysis methods, Identify policy or problem areas of statewide significance, and Create procedures for prioritizing projects. 2. Establish a corridor network: Develop criteria for corridor selection, Analyze candidate corridors and select those of statewide significance, and Develop a statewide corridor database. 3. Identify study corridors: Prioritize corridors previously selected, Establish a corridor analysis strategy and schedule, and Coordinate roles and responsibilities with planning partners. 4. Conduct corridor studies: Establish principles of study process, Develop corridor vision and performance measures, Identify problems, Identify alternatives and analyze impacts, Evaluate projects and corridors using common criteria, and Develop project and corridor investment program. 5. Identify statewide investment program: Establish a process for using corridor information in statewide planning and Monitor the ongoing SWCP process and adjust as needed. The most important section of the Guidebook is the technical guidance on these steps in the SWCP process, which uses a "checklist" matrix of tasks within each step and the reasons and methods for each of the tasks. Special Emphasis Areas There are a number of "special emphasis" areas that should always be considered during the statewide planning process: Comparisons between modes within corridors; The eight federal planning factors; Land use; Urban design; Economic development; Consistency with local or regional planning agencies; Consistency with other planning by other state agencies; Freight movement; Public transportation; Traffic operations; Safety; Linking National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and planning; Environmental objectives and mitigation opportunities; Coordination with local, state, and federal resource agencies; Addressing and reconciling different stakeholder priorities and interests;

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Summary 3 Metropolitan planning organization (MPO) and non-metropolitan local official consultation; Performance measures; Institutional/organizational issues and procedures; Innovative financing options; and Public/private partnerships. Benefits Based on state DOT surveys and case studies, the following have been identified as the pri- mary benefits of a corridor-based statewide planning process as compared with a systems- wide or project-based planning process: A more direct connection between the movement of people and goods and state-significant economic activity; The ability to more closely examine the trade-offs among different modes; A higher precision in monitoring the performance of transportation facilities and services; A more complete investigation of non-transportation strategies for addressing transportation challenges; A focus of multi-state efforts at improving transportation capabilities across boundaries; Familiarity to planning agency partners since corridor planning is already used in MPOs; and Greater engagement in planning by local officials and other stakeholders because of their abil- ity to better relate to the issues being faced. Challenges Challenges identified with the SWCP process, and statewide planning in general, include the following: How can information generated from individual corridor analyses be consolidated to develop a comprehensive statewide investment program and action plan? How can broader state goals and policies be incorporated into the SWCP approach to provide consistency across all of the corridor studies? How can consistency in planning goals and objectives be maintained when agency or politi- cal leadership changes? How can corridor and NEPA planning efforts be integrated into both the SWCP process and long-range plan updates? How can the relationship be coordinated among SWCP and the planning efforts by all appro- priate agencies such as local governments, rural planning organizations, MPOs, transit agen- cies, tribal governments, and federal land management agencies? How can the SWCP process help stakeholders and decisionmakers think in terms of corridors (which is somewhat conceptual) as opposed to focusing on individual projects? How does one ensure that the information and findings from individual corridor studies are consistent, replicable, and comparable? How does one distinguish between intra-state, interstate, and international corridors? Assuming that all corridor studies do not start and end at the same time, how can an inter- nally consistent and comprehensive statewide transportation plan be developed?