Transportation Thursdays

NOTE: NARC newsletters are typically uploaded to the website on the Friday of the week they were sent out.


June 14, 2018

Presentations and video links are available on our conference webpage.

House Clears WRDA
By a vote of 408 to 2, the House overwhelmingly passed the Water Resources Development Act(WRDA) of 2018 (H.R. 8) last week. The bill builds on further reforms to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and specifically calls for an analysis on the effects of moving the Corps out of the U.S. Department of Defense and into another agency. The Senate is expected to consider its own version of this bill sometime this summer, though possibly later than the July 4th recess as originally hoped.

IRS Bond Proposed Rule
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on Monday that would let tax-exempt bond proceeds be used for public projects. The NPRM seeks to clarify existing regulations by expressly providing an exception for investments in capital projects under the current arbitrage restrictions. It specifically addresses the definition of “investment-type” property to exclude investments in bond-financed capital projects.

Community Impact Assessment: A Quick Reference for Transportation
This handbook – for state DOTs, MPOs, and other agencies involved in the project development process – details how to conduct a community impact assessment. It updates a 1996 document that guides agencies through the process of understanding how transportation actions impact a community and its quality of life.

Analysis of Congestion Scenarios in Long Range Plans Using Travel Forecasting Models
A recent FHWA report describes the process of developing, analyzing, and displaying results of a scenario forecasting process using travel demand models. It strives to inform MPOs and state DOTs on scenario building methods using the Travel Time Index (TTI) and regional long-range planning models, and includes a step-by-step section to produce calculations using a trip-based model and explores the question of “what would it take to not let congestion get worse?”

FAA Infrastructure Grants Awarded
FAA is awarding $677 million in airport infrastructure grants to 346 projects that include runways, taxiways, and terminals. These grants are a part of the $3.18 billion Airport Improvement Program (AIP) funding. Examples of projects funded include $16.3 million for Salt Lake City International Airport to repair its aircraft parking area and $5.8 million to repair the taxiway at Boston Logan International Airport.

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EPA and Port Everglades Partnership: Emission Inventories and Reduction Strategies
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Broward County’s Port Everglades in Florida have released a joint report on emission reduction strategies. The report describes how they estimated emissions and evaluates potential benefits of reducing emissions from typical port operations. One example the partnership explored is replacing older cargo handling equipment with advanced technologies or alternative fuels, which could reduce nitrogen oxide emissions by 21–76 percent by 2035. The report also documented lessons learned, examples, and methods of research to help inform other ports and related agencies to conduct similar efforts.

Study on Prioritizing Bikeshare Investment in Underserved Communities
A National Center for Sustainable Transportation at University of California, Davis research report looks at how targeting “priority areas” in underserved communities for bikeshare station investment improves access. They created an index to help identify locations and provide estimates for potential job and social service access improvements. This research comes in response to a general sense that the benefits of bikeshare have largely passed over low-income households. The research suggests that “appropriate siting of bikeshare facilities can close accessibility gaps between mobility constrained populations and critical services.”

View full list of jobs!

Transportation Engineer/Planner
Pikes Peak Area Council of Governments, Colorado Springs, CO

Transportation Planner
Pikes Peak Area Council of Governments, Colorado Springs, CO

Program Manager of Economic and Demographic Forecasting
San Diego Association of Governments, San Diego, CA

Active Transportation Planner
Wasatch Front Regional Council, Salt Lake City, UT

Division Director of Toll Operations
San Diego Association of Governments, San Diego, CA

Executive Director 
Tri-County Regional Planning Commission, Lansing, MI

Research & Analysis Assistant
Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, Chicago, IL

Director of Policy and Planning
Capitol Region Council of Governments, Hartford, CT

Senior Planner
Puget Sound Regional Council, Seattle, WA

View full list of grants and events!

FHWA/FTA PBPP Implementation Office Hours
Session 1: June 25, 11:00 AM -– 12:30 PM ET 
Session 2: June 28, 2:00 PM – 3:30 PM ET
FHWA and FTA will hold two sessions of Performance-based Planning and Programming (PBPP) Implementation Office Hours. The goal of this training event is to help MPOs, transit agencies, and state DOTs successfully transition to performance-based transportation programs. The focus of these sessions will be on the performance management components of the FHWA/FTA transportation planning regulations. This Office Hours event will be delivered through a “flipped” webinar classroom approach. Flipped instructional approaches combine advance “prework” followed by “live” webinar or in-person sessions.

Hurricane Preparedness with OnTheMap for Emergency Management
June 27, 1:30 – 2:30 PM ET
The U.S. Census Bureau and the Local Employment Dynamics (LED) Partnership in collaboration with the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) are hosting a webinar that will highlight useful functions of the OnTheMap for Emergency Management data tool. OnTheMap for Emergency Management is a public data tool, which provides an intuitive web-based interface for viewing the potential effects of disasters on the U.S. workforce and population. Users can easily retrieve reports containing detailed workforce, population, and housing characteristics for hurricanes, floods, wildfires, winter storms, and federal disaster declaration areas.

TMIP Webinar: WMATA SafeTrack Surges – Impact on The Regional Transportation System
June 27, 2:00 – 3:00 PM ET
Does re-investment in the public transit system have benefits for transportation system reliability and congestion? To determine this, the FTA Office of Planning undertook an evaluation of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) SafeTrack system shutdowns by comparing 2015 transportation system riders, volumes, and travel times and compared them with similar dates during the 2016 WMATA SafeTrack shutdowns. Based upon the analysis of actual changes in travel mode use, travel times, transit ridership, pedestrian and bike use, and auto counts, there were impacts to the Washington D.C. metropolitan area transportation system reliability and congestion that this webinar will discuss.

FHWA Technical Assistance for Health in Transportation
Letters of Interest due: June 29
FHWA is offering technical assistance to test a Multimodal Corridor Planning Framework in up to five state or local transportation agencies. The purpose of this technical assistance is to support transportation agencies while using the framework to improve health outcomes and enhance community considerations. The focus is on the needs of the community that the selected corridor serves by enhancing collaboration and building partnerships that promote a healthy environment, accessibility, and economic revitalization. The test team should be led by the state, regional, or local transportation agency advancing the corridor study. Partnerships are welcome and may include community advocacy groups; land use or economic development agencies; transit providers; public health agencies; or others. Any transportation corridor may be proposed for testing during the study period, August 2018 – July 2020.

Sustainable Fleet Technology Conference
August 22–23, Durham, NC
The Sustainable Fleet Technology Conference, hosted by the North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center, showcases the latest and greatest in advanced vehicles, fuels, and technologies — including data-driven solutions. This conference is a source of on-the-ground experience for increasing fleet efficiency and sustainability, while reducing emissions and costs.


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