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30 Guidebook for Understanding Urban Goods Movement Exhibit 4-1. Geographic dimensions of urban freight data. Source: Wilbur Smith Associates, adapted from The Geography of Transport Systems (Rodrigue, Comtois, and Slack 2009). Primary and secondary data sources have strengths and limitations for supporting planning activities. Primary sources such as surveys or truck counts can provide the level of detail often needed for urban level planning but they can also require significant resources. Secondary freight data sources, both public and private exist, but often do not capture the levels of detail needed for urban freight planning (e.g., routing details). Used together, secondary freight data sources, supplemented with primary data often can be integrated to provide value to public planners addressing urban goods movement issues. The guidebook discussion of freight data is presented in a simple framework shown in Exhibit 4-1. Most public agencies that have undertaken a programmatic approach to freight planning have learned that there is seldom a "one size fits all" solution to urban freight data needs. Addressing multi- faceted issues typically requires multiple data sources and a variety of techniques. For example, reme- dies for congestion-related problems may require a combination of strategic projects pertaining to capacity enhancements, system preservation, operational improvements, demand management, and maintenance policies. The requisite data could encompass truck volumes, service perfor- mance, structural conditions, and cost information, not all of which may be limited to freight. Neighborhood Freight Data In NCHRP Synthesis Report 320: Integrating Freight Facilities and Operations with Community Goals, the author notes that integrating freight operations with the vision that most of us have for livable communities is a complex and multifaceted issue (Strauss-Wieder 2003). Just some

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Using Freight Data for Planning 31 Exhibit 4-2. Freight data issues affecting neighborhoods. Source: Wilbur Smith Associates. of the complex issues of concern to urban planners at the neighborhood level are outlined in Exhibit 4-2. In NCFRP Report 8: Freight-Demand Modeling to Support Public-Sector Decision Making (Cambridge Systematics, Inc. and GeoStats, LLP 2010) the authors reported that interviews and surveys conducted with public decisionmakers identified "existing routing" as the primary freight data need identified by those surveyed. At the neighborhood level, route choices can often be complex and non-intuitive, requiring at least some level of primary data collection to understand truck driver decisions. Traffic counts and trip diaries are two traditional means of understanding route choices made by truck drivers, but new methods such as GPS vehicle track- ing also are gaining prominence (GPS data collection methods are discussed more in the sec- tion on Freight Network Data). One issue with all such approaches is that they reveal the result of routing decisions but not the reasons for them. Because many truck fleets rely on stop- sequencing software to construct their routes, familiarity with such tools can help interpret the primary data findings. Safety is an important consideration for both citizens and freight operators. Freight vehi- cles are not necessarily more unsafe than other vehicles, but because of blind spots, slower vehicle reaction times, larger loads, or loads of hazardous materials, freight should always be considered in the planning process. In a neighborhood, it may be especially important to understand how freight vehicles interact on local streets where pedestrians and children are present. For example, truck drivers often complain that tree trimming and landscaping blocks the line of sight for drivers sitting high off the road. Safety issues can also arise when large trucks using local streets encounter construction or inadequate infrastructure such as low or narrow bridges. Understanding safety issues at the local level typically requires data and information about actual conditions, such as route preferences, truck counts, and vehicle speeds. Given that freight operations often generate large volumes of truck traffic, air quality and emissions has become an increasingly important safety issue to many communities. Many states and communities have adopted idling regulations for residential areas. The American Trans- portation Research Institute (ATRI), the non-profit research arm of the American Trucking Associations has compiled a compendium of these regulations, which can be found on the resource CD. Some communities also are becoming more active in monitoring neighborhood emissions. For instance, the Port of Los Angeles has installed four monitoring stations that con- tinuously measure air quality in the port complex and in communities downwind of the port.

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32 Guidebook for Understanding Urban Goods Movement The EPA has developed the Smartway Program to encourage the adoption of new engine tech- nologies and other activities to reduce diesel emissions. Finally, the dispersion of emissions can be as much, or more, important than their originating points, in terms of where effects are felt and how to alleviate them. Modeling that captures topography and meteorology in addition to traffic is required for this, and some is accessible through EPA. Another issue gaining prominence in freight planning is the need to address environmental justice. Environmental justice (EJ) refers to the concept that over time, geographic areas with larger-than-average concentrations of minority populations or populations at or below the poverty line suffer disproportionately negative environmental impacts from transportation- related development. Since 1994, federal agencies have been required to identify and address potential or actual disproportionately adverse environmental effects on minority and low- income populations. For example, when the Atlanta Regional Commission defined a regionwide truck route plan, it conducted a demographic analysis of the region, with a special emphasis on identifying EJ populations. EJ census blocks were mapped in relation to the proposed truck routes, in order to address environmental justice issues concerning existing and potential future freight traffic impacts during subsequent outreach sessions. For each of the neighborhood freight issues described there are likely some sources of second- ary data collected for traffic monitoring, land-use compliance, or travel demand modeling that can be adapted to address safety, air quality, or environmental justice issues. However, to better understand the actual conditions in a neighborhood, some primary data collection will be required. Exhibit 4-3 provides a framework for how primary and secondary data sources might be integrated to address common freight issues at a neighborhood level. Exhibit 4-3. Integrating freight data to address neighborhood issues.