National Academies Press: OpenBook

Preserving and Protecting Freight Infrastructure and Routes (2012)

Chapter: Chapter 9 - Education about Freight Transportation Issues

« Previous: Chapter 8 - Mitigation of Conflicts between Freight and Other Land Uses
Page 70
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 9 - Education about Freight Transportation Issues." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2012. Preserving and Protecting Freight Infrastructure and Routes. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/14650.
Page 70
Page 71
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 9 - Education about Freight Transportation Issues." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2012. Preserving and Protecting Freight Infrastructure and Routes. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/14650.
Page 71

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70 Education about freight transportation issues can take many forms. Freight transportation issues that were relevant for NCFRP Project 24 include the following: • The value of freight transportation; • Planning for freight facilities and corridors; and • How to prevent or resolve conflicts between freight and other, often incompatible, land uses. Lack of education or information on these issues is often at the root of many of the conflicts between freight entities and other land uses. Although education on these issues can sometimes be part of a university curriculum for planning students, it is often accomplished in the “real world” through various means that involve communication and interaction between interested stakeholders. Channels of education/ communication include • Education in planning schools regarding freight transporta­ tion issues, • Planning­agency­sponsored freight task forces and round tables, • Community round tables and working groups, • Outreach efforts by freight entities, and • Available previous research. The NCFRP Project 24 research team noted that most university planning curricula do not include freight in their master’s programs for community and regional planning. Although some students might be able to take a multi­ disciplinary class on multimodal freight issues or multimodal freight planning classes that are often taught in Transporta­ tion Engineering programs, these types of multidisciplinary classes—which are on the rise—are not always offered to students from different disciplines. The inclusion of freight issues in university planning curricula would go a long way toward overcoming many conflicts between freight and other land uses. Beyond formal education, most state DOTs have a freight plan, and some have created freight task forces and freight round tables to provide a venue for stakeholder input as they develop freight plans. Ports and airports are well known for their round tables and community working groups, which are often put together to solve problems and make recommenda­ tions where federal grant monies are applied to mitigate for issues such as noise and vibration. Many of these types of groups produce excellent edu­ cational resource materials to better understand and plan for freight. The FHWA Office of Freight Management and Operations also has an excellent webpage for freight planning (U.S. Department of Transportation 2006a), which includes items for freight professional development that a newcomer to freight planning can utilize. Items include access to work­ shops, the “Talking Freight” webinar series, and the National Highway Institute courses such as “Integrating Freight in the Transportation Planning Process.” Other groups, such as California’s Air Resources Board, have conducted programs to mitigate for pollution around ports and have developed inventories and mitigation plans that provide useful educational material to understand freight impacts (California Environ­ mental Protection Agency 2005a). Freight entities also can play a role in the education process in an effort to avoid or resolve conflicts. The research performed for NCFRP Project 24 offered a number of examples where outreach or education efforts by freight entities were valu­ able. For example, in the case of the Staten Island Railroad ( Study_SIRR.pdf) resumption of service, CSX conducted a significant public outreach campaign to notify the public about the resumed service and also went to schools to pre­ vent children from playing in the right­of­way. As another example, the freight groups involved in the Atlanta Regional Freight Mobility Plan ( C h a p t e r 9 Education about Freight Transportation Issues

71 issues/pdf/ARC_Freight_Plan_case_study.pdf) provided ranking scores for funding prioritization on projects that were placed into the Transportation Improvement Program submitted to Georgia’s DOT. Specific strategies for improving communication between freight and land­use stakeholders would include the formation of standing planning committees and the regular exchange of internal planning materials and decisions, redacted as necessary. Private­sector groups, including local chambers of commerce, can play an important role in keeping freight issues on the agenda and encouraging buy­in from the busi­ ness community when a freight­related project is proposed. Improving communication through various levels of govern­ ment also is required and must be a two­way channel. Resources for previous research and for freight studies reviewed during this project can be found in Appendix K.

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TRB’s National Cooperative Freight Research Program (NCFRP) Report 16: Preserving and Protecting Freight Infrastructure and Routes provides guidance to decision makers involved in freight facility operations, freight transportation planning, and land use on how to avoid conflicting land uses or mitigate existing uses.

The report provides information about freight transportation and its importance to people’s everyday lives; illustrates the types of conflicts between freight and other land uses and their consequences; and provides tools and resources designed to help preserve facilities and corridors, including prevention or resolution of conflicts.

In addition to the report, was developed as part of this project. The website is designed to complement the report by including more detailed materials then could be included in the report.

A CD-ROM packaged with the print version of the report includes the appendices to the report.

The CD-ROM is also available for download from TRB’s website as an ISO image. Links to the ISO image and instructions for burning a CD-ROM from an ISO image are provided below.

Help on Burning an .ISO CD-ROM Image

Download the .ISO CD-ROM Image

(Warning: This is a large file and may take some time to download using a high-speed connection.)

An article on NCFRP Report 16 was published in the January-February 2013 version of the TR News.

CD-ROM Disclaimer - This software is offered as is, without warranty or promise of support of any kind either expressed or implied. Under no circumstance will the National Academy of Sciences or the Transportation Research Board (collectively "TRB") be liable for any loss or damage caused by the installation or operation of this product. TRB makes no representation or warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, in fact or in law, including without limitation, the warranty of merchantability or the warranty of fitness for a particular purpose, and shall not in any case be liable for any consequential or special damages.

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