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C H A P T E R 1 Background As departments of transportation (DOTs) move toward more This integration involves operational processes, as well as customer-based performance metrics, network and travel time the broader efforts to institutionalize core processes at the reliability begin to take a more prominent role among the agency level. potential measures on which a transportation management The outcomes of this project are envisioned to assist trans- agency rates its own performance. With the strong focus on portation agency and authority managers in developing and the Federal Congestion Initiative, agencies need innovative integrating business processes with a tangible goal in mind-- approaches to deal with congestion and delay; travel time to improve travel time reliability. These processes and their reliability is a key measure of such approaches, as well as of relationship to travel time reliability may initially seem abstract, overall system operations (1). Tools and approaches that can but the intent is to map out clearly defined paths toward suc- improve reliability or an agency's response to impediments cessful integration of processes that have been demonstrated to travel time reliability can yield valuable benefits to an over- to enhance travel time reliability, thereby guiding transporta- all operations strategy. Integrating key processes can further tion managers and officers in adopting and integrating these demonstrate the positive effects and operational influences. processes within their respective agencies and operations. L01 is an integral part of the SHRP 2 Reliability focus area The following were the project's key research objectives: in that it establishes a baseline of knowledge of current agency business processes--and the integration of these processes-- · Identify and document successful practices that integrate that have significant impact on travel time reliability (2). Reli- business processes to improve travel time reliability. This ability is defined in this report as consistency of travel times was accomplished through researching available litera- for a particular trip. Travelers tend to estimate how long a trip ture, identifying appropriate case studies, and interviewing will take based on parameters such as distance, time of day, agencies that have demonstrated innovative approaches and their own experience. Impacts to the transportation net- or integration strategies. An important research focus was work that cause unexpected delays introduce uncertainty in on those agencies that have integrated various business travel time reliability. processes concerning factors that affect nonrecurring con- gestion, because these factors tend to have the most nega- tive impact on reliability. Project Overview · Define key business processes within DOT and transporta- The results of L01 identify the core of operations business tion operations that are linked to travel time reliability. processes within transportation management that have day-to- · Promote awareness of the business process concept within day influence over operations and network performance and, DOT operations and demonstrate how relating integrated in turn, have positive impacts on travel time reliability. business processes with operational enhancements results The L01 project differs from other research activities that are in travel time reliability. part of the SHRP 2 Reliability focus area, some of which are · Demonstrate how strategies and business process integra- also developing specific procedures, monitoring programs, or tion activities successfully employed by agencies can be exploring alternatives to traditional traffic management strate- adopted by other entities, and document the factors that gies. L01 specifically looks into the processes that enable oper- could affect such adoption. ational functions that directly affect network and travel time · Help agency managers identify critical gaps in their current reliability and in which integration plays a significant part. processes and strategies to address these gaps, including 7