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OCR for page 91
91 CHAPTER six Profiles of Contemporary Practices This chapter presents profiles of contemporary access man- Access Management: Transportation Policy Considerations agement practices and highlights key aspects of how trans- for a Growing Virginia (92) that examined access manage- portation agencies develop and administer their access ment implications in Virginia from the legal, planning, and management programs. These profiles are noteworthy engineering perspectives. Despite the noteworthy progress, because they may be considered as state of the practice and Virginia lacked a political "champion" to advance and promote have potential applicability elsewhere. They include specific the program and to establish associated legislative authority. examples of unique or innovative practices related to access management. The chapter reflects a range of dimensions Conditions changed by 2006, when the state highway sys- involved with access management, including the legal basis, tem in Virginia faced a fiscal crisis. The gas tax had not been policy and program elements, implementation tools, and key raised since 1986, and revenue was insufficient to meet the technical areas. needs for roadway construction. In addition, because Vir- ginia law mandates using highway funds for maintenance The profiles include the following: first, construction funds were being diverted to address maintenance needs. These constraints were compounded Implementation of a Statewide Access Management by the fact that VDOT is responsible for maintaining nearly Program in Virginia every roadway in the state (from freeways to local subdivi- North Carolina DOT Strategic Corridors Initiative sion streets). Therefore, the state faced a critical challenge ACS Development for Indiana DOT of how to fund increasing roadway construction and mainte- Minnesota DOT's Development and Access Permitting nance projects without raising taxes. Review Process Oregon DOT's Automated Permit Database In response to this challenge, VDOT reached out to the (CHAMPS) Senate Finance and Transportation Subcommittees of the Louisiana DOTD's TIS Policy and Process General Assembly in 2006, and made presentations to educate Louisiana DOTD's Approach to Implementing Access their members on the benefits of access management. These Management presentations focused on using access management as a tool Caltrans' Equitable Share Responsibility Calculations to improve the vehicle-carrying capacity of the state highway New Jersey DOT's Vehicle-Use Limitations for system and to reduce the state's capital costs for new roads and Nonconforming Lots road widening projects by maximizing the use of the state's Transit-Related Trip-Generation Credits in the New existing highway infrastructure. Recognizing the cost-sav- Jersey Access Code ings benefits of access management, the General Assembly directed VDOT to develop a legislative proposal for a com- prehensive access management program for consideration by Implementation Of A Statewide Access the 2007 General Assembly. This proposal authorized VDOT Management Program In Virginia to create and implement statewide access management stan- dards and regulations, with the recognition and support of the The access management program for the Virginia Department state legislature. The goals of the VDOT access management of Transportation (VDOT) began in the mid-1990s with efforts program were to achieve the following: to develop a program within the department and to promote it externally (78). In 1995, the Traffic Engineering Division Reduce traffic congestion established an Access Management Committee, followed by Reduce fuel consumption and air pollution an Education Awareness Program in 1997 that involved out- Enhance public safety by reducing crash rates reach presentations to public and private sector organizations Reduce the need for new highways and road widening across Virginia. The feedback obtained through surveys of by maximizing the performance of existing highways participants at these presentations indicated strong support for Preserve the public investment in new highways access management. In addition, in 1998 the Virginia Trans- Support economic development, while respecting portation Research Council prepared a document entitled property owners' rights to reasonable access