Transportation Thursdays



USDOT Issues Bike/Ped Challenge to Communities: U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced on Tuesday that 85 mayors from across the country have committed to prioritizing bicycle and pedestrian safety by signing up for the Mayors’ Challenge, a part of the Safer People, Safer Streets initiative launched in September. The Challenge includes a Mayoral Summit in March and a seven-activity action plan for the year. Click HERE and HERE for Mayors’ Challenge details. Click HERE for a list of participating cities.

Foxx Posts America Needs Passenger Rail:
While on the road for his GROW America Bus Tour last week, Secretary Foxx released an article reiterating the importance of investing in quality transportation infrastructure and the prominence of passenger rail in that network. Click HERE to view Foxx’s post.

State Chambers Urge Long-Term Transportation Investment:
Congressional leaders received a letter today signed by 42 state chambers of commerce, urging them to prioritize long-term investment in America’s transportation infrastructure by extending the Highway Trust Fund and reauthorizing MAP-21. Their letter highlights America’s infrastructure needs and the impact on the nation’s place in the global marketplace. Click HERE to access their letter.


The Importance of Map-21 Reauthorization: Perspectives from Owners, Operators, and Users of the System: The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee held a hearing yesterday on MAP-21 reauthorization. Senators discussed the importance of renewing the nation’s transportation program and the dangers of delaying a long-term reauthorization. Click HERE to view the webcast and additional information. Click HERE for a brief summary of the hearing.


CMAP Launches Interactive Mobility Data Visualization Website to Help Users Explore CREATE Program: In 2003, The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) announced the Chicago Region Environmental and Transportation Efficiency (CREATE) program, which currently includes 70 rail improvement projects. CREATE was developed through partnerships between the USDOT, the Illinois DOT, Metra, Amtrak, and the City of Chicago. Click HERE for CMAP’s CREATE Interactive Program Status update. Click HERE for the website.

EDC Provides Responder Training for Traffic Incidents:
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Every Day Counts (EDC) initiatives list includes the Strategic Highway Research Program 2 (SHRP2), which provides National Traffic Incident Management Responder Training for safe, timely, and reliable response. This training program will allow first responders to quickly detect incidents, clear the scene, and restore traffic flow, effectively saving drivers and businesses time and money. Click HERE to access the EDC’s traffic incident solutions fact sheet.

West Coast Port Standoff Coming to a Close: A tentative five-year contract agreement between port operators and labor representatives last Friday restored port operations on the West Coast. Dockworkers reported for duty Saturday night to begin chipping away at the freight backlog. Click HERE for more on the port standoff.

Co-Monitoring for Transit Management
This report, published by New York University’s Rudin Center for Transportation, explores the potential for integrating web-based rider input into transit monitoring systems, in addition to existing staff reports and data analysis.  Such integration would allow ridership to report observations through specific apps or social media, to save transit agencies time and money and improve responsiveness to system issues. Click HERE for the report.

The Pennsylvania Funding Example: While most states struggle to fund even their critical priority infrastructure projects, Pennsylvania has generated enough funding to repair its roads and bridges, and then some. In 2013, with public support, legislation was approved to phase-in a variety of fees, fines and taxes over five years, which included the repeal of the state gas tax and an increase of the state Oil Company Franchise Tax. The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) anticipates that this tax increase alone will generate up to $1.9 billion annually by 2017. Click HERE for full detail.


Click HERE to view the list of grants and events still open!

REQUEST FOR INFORMATION: Accessible Transportation Technology Research Initiative: In 2013, the USDOT launched the Accessible Transportation Technology Research Initiative (ATTRI) Program to provide safe, independent and reliable mobility and travel options for those with disabilities. To advance the efficacy of the ATTRI, the US DOT now seeks perspectives on the opportunities and challenges of developing, implementing, operating and using accessible transportation technologies and their infrastructure. Click HERE for directions on how to complete a request form.

WEBINAR: Driving in America: Emerging Trends and Policies
February 27, 3:30 PM ET
The State Smart Transportation Initiative (SSTI) is hosting an info session to discuss recently released data from the FHWA. Chris McCahill of SSTI and Professor Norman Garrick of UConn will speak to current trends in travel and the impact of an economic upturn on those trends.  Steven Cliff, Assistant Director of Sustainability for the California Department of Transportation, will use his state as an example of how current and estimated future travel trends can affect decision-making regarding California’s goal of reducing vehicle-miles traveled.  Click HERE to register.

WEBINAR: Engineering Road and Transportation Assets for Resilience to Climate Change
March 3, 2:00 – 3:30 PM ET
This webinar provides an 11-step process for assessing facility vulnerability and generating adaptation options, with experiences from the Gulf Coast 2 Study and the Minnesota DOT as examples. Click HERE to register.

WEBINAR: Asset Management NPRM
March 4, 1:30 – 3:00 PM ET
The FHWA published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on February 20 to propose a process to develop State risk-based asset management plans as required by MAP-21. This webinar will discuss the NPRM and offer resources for state DOTs to manage and enhance the performance of infrastructure funded through the Federal-aid highway program. Click HERE to register.

WEBINAR: Biking and Communities of Color
March 18, 11:00 AM ET
The Safe Routes to School National Partnership is hosting a five-speaker presentation on bike lanes, and how increasing biking can encourage community revitalization. Click HERE to register.

DESIGN CHALLENGE: Healthcare Access Mobility
Due: March 27
Funded by the Federal Transit Administration through the Federal Ladders of Opportunity initiative, the National Center for Mobility Management is seeking eight community teams to design a solution concept for healthcare access-related transportation barriers. The Design Challenge is a competitive six-month endeavor in which selected teams will demonstrate that their concept has customer interest, is operationally feasible and is financial viable. Successful teams will receive up to $25,000 in grants and technical assistance for implementation. Click HERE for information on the design and application process.

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