Survey of Statewide Multimodal Transportation Planning Practices

Report No: 03-TAR9

Published in 2002

About the report:

Multimodal planning refers to planning for different modes of transportation (e.g., automobile, bus, bicycles, pedestrian, aviation, rail, waterways) and the connections among them. This study identified states thought to excel in multimodal planning, documented their best practices, and recommended areas for further exploration in Virginia. Two key reports published under the Transportation Research Board's National Cooperative Highway Research Program and telephone interviews of representatives from Florida, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oregon, and Wisconsin revealed a wide range of techniques to improve multimodal planning. The techniques can be grouped into three categories: (1) organization of the state departments of transportation (DOTs), (2) innovations in multimodal practices, and (3) public outreach efforts. In terms of state DOT organization, the states emphasize cooperation and the sharing of modal-specific information, even though some states concentrate planning in one office and other states give planning authority to each mode (and then ensure that the planners work together on key projects, such as corridor efforts). Innovations in multimodal practices include modally blind performance measures and partnerships among state DOTs and metropolitan planning organizations. In terms of public outreach, tactics to broaden the stakeholder base include the provision of 800 numbers for comments; freight advisory committees; community impact workshop assessments to train staff; and charettes, which are goal-oriented, facilitated workshops that help produce consensus-based direction or targets for studies. Although the survey results alone are not sufficiently detailed to provide a clear path to implementation, they do suggest several pilot initiatives that the Virginia DOT should consider exploring. These initiatives include changes to legislation, educational efforts in one suburban district, and application of a set of non-modal specific performance measures in one planning district where state and local interests are likely to be in conflict.

Disclaimer Statement:The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.

Last updated: December 1, 2023

Alert Icon

Please note that this file is not ADA compliant. Choose one of below options: