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7 ments. Financial uncertainty, particularly when expressed STUDY METHODOLOGY by project cost underestimates or overestimates, can create programming problems. If the project was initially underes- The study began with a literature review of existing pro- timated in the TIP, then funds will frequently be moved from cesses, from which a survey process was developed. The other projects, requiring changes to both funding levels and findings of the report draw heavily from direct contact with scheduling elements in the TIP project descriptions. If the MPOs generated through a three-phase process. The first project cost was initially overestimated in the TIP, then that phase consisted of a brief screening questionnaire sent to all project will require a reduction in funding shown in the TIP, state DOTs and FHWA and FTA offices to identify candidate at a minimum (5,6 ). MPOs for a detailed survey. The screening process identi- fied 45 MPOs to survey. The MPO survey contained detailed Similarly, a lack of advance awareness of congressional questions about sources of delay, satisfaction with estab- earmarks often requires unexpected shifts in a regional allo- lished processes, and issues encountered in both amendment cation of dollars unanticipated by the sponsors of the project and modification processes and the mitigations developed to earmark (5,6). A report completed after a best practices scan respond to those issues. From the completed second-phase in 2010 by AASHTO noted that volatility in TIPs and STIPs, in surveys, 10 MPOs were selected for case examples to further particular, results in the need for changes to project costs and develop key concepts of agency relationships and individual schedules, as well as the addition of new projects. Metropoli- experiences that may be transferable to other MPOs and state tan plans require changes less frequently, and therefore present transportation agencies. From these efforts, the report con- far less of a challenge. The number of amendments and admin- cludes with a state-of-the-practice overview of TIP amend- istrative actions that MPOs and DOTs take for TIPs and STIPs ment/modification procedures and notable findings from the varies widely. Large, complex MPOs, such as the New York 10 case examples. Metropolitan Transportation Council, require hundreds of actions each year, whereas smaller MPOs and states may only To identify MPOs for further study, each office of the require a handful. MPOs vary the frequency of amendments, FHWA (n = 50), FTA (n = 10), and state DOTs (n = 50) was from periods as brief as daily to as long as quarterly (6). sent a web-based screening questionnaire. The questionnaire FIGURE 1 Map locating the MPOs studied.
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8 asked the respondents what organization they represented, Table 1 summarizes the techniques in place at MPOs to aid and if there were MPOs that exhibited notable character- in the processing of TIP revisions in several different areas istics of efficiency, public involvement, innovation, or col- (procedural, technological, and standardization). The table laboration in their TIP revision process. Respondents were summaries information gathered from survey responses and invited to list up to five MPOs that exhibited one or more of case examples. The MPOs listed in Table 2 were selected for these traits (refer to Appendix A for the complete text of the a second round of study. questionnaire). All of the respondents cited at least one, and as many as five, MPOs that exhibited some or all of these Thirty-seven of the 45 MPOs surveyed responded to the four characteristics. The distribution of MPOs engaged questionnaire (response rate: 82%); 10 of those respondents for further study is illustrated in Figure 1. The selection of were later contacted for additional interviews. Interviews were participant MPOs relied heavily on the strength of recom- conducted with eight Transportation Management Associa- mendations from the screening questionnaire, as well as geo- tions (TMAs) and two non-TMAs. Additionally, eight of the graphic distribution, size, and air quality conformity status. ten case examples are in air quality conformity regions. TABLE 1 TIP REVISION ACTIONS OR INNOVATIONS Action or Innovation Innovation Area Procedural Technology Standardization Development of Templates for Information Input Online Database of TIP Revisions Online Data Entry for TIP Revisions Online Routing of TIP Revisions Training Videos or Workshops on TIP Revision Tools Absentee Voting Call for Unscheduled Board Meeting Grouping Revisions for Next Scheduled Board Meeting Improve Communications in Early Stages of TIP Revision Procedural Guidance (Statewide or MPO-Specific) Collaboration on Defining TIP Amendments and Administrative Modification Threshold Criteria Modifications to Public Participation Requirements Updates of TIP on Annual Basis () Useful for Amendment; () Useful for Administrative Modification. TABLE 2 THE CANDIDATE SURVEY MPO EVALUATION FTA Region and MPO Size1 AQ2 Case Study Region 1: Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut PACTS (Portland, ME) 194,896 No Capitol Region COG (Hartford, CT) 721,320 Yes Central MA RPC (Worcester, MA) 518,480 No Yes RI Statewide Planning (State of RI) 1,048,319 No Region 2: New York and New Jersey South Jersey TPO (Trenton, NJ) 565,601 Yes CDTC (Albany, NY) 780,467 Yes Yes North Jersey TPA (Newark, NJ) 6,310,989 Yes Genesee Transportation Council (NY) 1,200,000 No NYMTC (New York, NY) 12,068,148 Yes Table 2 continued on p. 9
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9 Table 2 continued from p. 8 FTA Region and MPO Size1 AQ2 Case Study Region 3: Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, District of Columbia Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission (Pittsburgh, PA) 2,656,007 Yes Richmond MPO (VA) 811,108 Yes WILMAPCO (Wilmington, DE) 586,216 Yes Yes Regional Intergovernmental Council (WV) 251,662 No Region 4: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee West Florida Regional Planning Council (FL/AL) 392,058 Yes Gulfport RPC (MS) 313,635 No Knoxville MPO (TN) 476,542 Yes Atlanta Regional Commission (GA) 3,890,582 Yes Yes Volusia TPO (Daytona Beach, FL) 448,768 No Region 5: Illinois, Ohio, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Indiana, and Michigan CMAP (Chicago, IL) 8,150,789 Yes Yes MORPC (Columbus, OH) 1,241,251 Yes East-Central Wisconsin RPC (Menasha, WI) 55,365 No Madison Area Transportation Planning Board (WI) 350,247 No Indianapolis MPO (Indianapolis, IN) 1,299,722 Yes Duluth MIC (Duluth, MN) 145,163 Yes Yes Region 6: Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, and New Mexico Santa Fe MPO (Santa Fe, NM) 92,407 No North Central TX COG (Dallas, TX) 4,879,535 Yes Yes ACOG (Oklahoma City, OK) 990,564 Yes San Antonio-Bexar County MPO (TX) 1,415,906 Yes Region 7: Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska, and Kansas East-West Gateway COG (St. Louis, MO) 2,482,935 Yes MAPA (Omaha, NE) 658,810 No Siouxland Interstate MPC (Sioux City, IA) 113,423 No MARC (Kansas City, MO) 1,582,372 Yes Region 8: Colorado, Utah, Montana, Wyoming, South Dakota, and North Dakota Denver Regional COG (Denver, CO) 2,394,504 Yes Pikes Peak COG (Colorado Springs, CO) 514,171 No Wasatch Front RPC (Salt Lake City, UT) 1,328,198 Yes Yes Missoula MPO (Missoula, MT) 81,144 No Yes Cache MPO (Logan, UT) 79,453 No Region 9: Arizona, California, Hawaii, and Nevada Flagstaff MPO (Flagstaff, AZ) 68,030 No Fresno COG (Fresno, CA) 799,407 Yes Oahu MPO (Oahu, HI) 860,560 No RTC of Southern NV (Las Vegas, NV) 1,375,765 Yes Table 2 continued on p. 10
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10 Table 2 continued from p. 9 FTA Region and MPO Size1 AQ2 Case Study Region 10: Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Alaska Metro (Portland, OR) 1,313,695 Yes COMPASS (Boise, ID) 406,160 Yes Yes Anchorage MATS (Anchorage, AK) 257,803 Yes Puget Sound Regional Council (Seattle, WA) 3,275,847 Yes Notes: 1Estimated size of MPO population (2000). 2Air quality conformity status as indicated on MPO website.