11. Transitioning from Planning to Implementation
|CHAPTER ACRONYM LIST
||Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality
||Center for Transportation and the Environment
||Department of Transportation
||Department of Rail and Public Transportation
||Federal Highway Administration
||Federal Transit Administration
||Guaranteed Ride Home
||High Occupancy Toll
||High Occupancy Vehicle
||Intelligent Transportation Systems
||Level of Service
||Metropolitan Planning Organization
||Metropolitan Transportation Commission
||National Ambient Air Quality Standards
||National Cooperative Highway Research Program
||National Environmental Policy Act
||Single Occupancy Vehicle
||Surface Transportation Program
||Transportation Control Measures
||Transportation Community and System Preservation Program
||Travel Demand Management
||Transportation Management Association
||Transportation Management District
||Transit Oriented Development
||Transportation Systems Management
||Vehicle Miles Travelled
||Vehicle Trip Reduction
||Worksite Trip Reduction Model
This chapter examines TDM programs nationwide to identify examples of successful implementation and support of demand management programs by state DOTs, MPOs, and TMAs, corridor-level projects, and local planning organizations. It concludes with a discussion of how TDM programs are funded, focused largely on federal sources.
11.1 State Level
Based on an extensive outreach effort in executing NCHRP Project 20-65 Task 24, "State Department of Transportation Role in the Implementation of Transportation Demand Management Programs," a nationwide survey of state DOTs was conducted to identify national trends regarding the extent of their involvement in TDM and related activities. Over 90 percent of responding state DOTs indicated that their agencies play a role in TDM.199 The most commonly identified roles were the use of TDM on project-level activities and providing funding/technical assistance to local organizations focused on TDM. However, state DOTs can play many different roles in implementing TDM services. Some potential roles are listed below:
- Administering TDM Services – Through this role, state DOTs focus on various programmatic TDM activities, such as encouraging alternative modes by offering assistance to employers in setting up worksite programs, maintaining ridematching databases, offering transit incentives, and providing a Guaranteed Ride Home (GRH) program. An example of this type of involvement is the Virginia DOT's efforts to support teleworking by providing funds to the Telework!VA program, a public/private partnership founded by the DRPT to reduce traffic congestion, improve air quality, and facilitate better transportation through technology.200 With help from Virginia DOT's funds, Telework!VA provides telework training and financial incentives for Virginia businesses to establish or expand telework programs for their employees.
- Conducting Marketing – This role focuses on providing a statewide level of support for changing travel behaviors through informed decision-making and public education on TDM. The most effective TDM marketing programs involve a variety of partners within a community, including public officials, community organizations, and individuals who support alternative modes. Utah DOT (UDOT) launched a
$1.5 million program known as TravelWise – a set of strategies that encourage Utahns to use alternatives to driving alone, thereby reducing energy consumption, reducing traffic congestion, and improving air quality. Several of these strategies include alternative work schedules, active transportation, ridesharing, and teleworking. Through a cooperative relationship with eight TMAs, New Jersey DOT (NJDOT) manages a TDM program focused on strategies, incentives, and pilot programs developed to reduce VMT and improve air quality.201 NJDOT TDM strategies include rideshare marketing, rideshare incentives and support services, transit incentives and support services, transit service improvements, and park and ride lot expansion.202
- Funding Investments in Travel Options – State DOTs also focus on the provision and direct support for alternative mode infrastructure, including carsharing, park-and-ride facilities, bicycle/pedestrian improvements, and HOV lanes.203 These types of TDM program activities identify investment needs and define the most effective infrastructure improvements. For example, Massachusetts DOT's (MassDOT) travel options program, MassRides, partners with 300 elementary and middle schools to deliver the Safe Routes to School program to educate the community on the transportation, safety, and health benefits of walking/bicycling to school. In addition, MassRides is specifically working with 40 schools to identify infrastructure improvements such as crosswalks, pedestrian traffic signals, school speed zones, and sidewalk connections. Many of these identified infrastructure improvements will be funded through the federal Safe Routes to School program.204
- Integrating TDM into Internal Business Practices – Another way for state DOTs to be promoters of TDM is to provide commuter options programs for their employees. Arizona DOT (ADOT) participates in a Trip Reduction Program by offering incentives and programs, through Capitol Rideshare, to encourage state employees to reduce travel.205 Capitol Rideshare incentives include commuter club discounts, preferential rideshare parking permits, emergency ride home benefits, transit subsidy program, and a vanpool education program.206
- Establishing Cooperative Relationships – State DOTs may establish cooperative relationships to ensure coordination toward common goals. Through its new TravelWise program, UDOT is identifying strategies to optimize the existing statewide transportation system.207 As the state does not have TMAs, it is instead focusing on partnerships with community organizations, private businesses, and government offices, to build its network and expand its TDM services, along with the Utah Transit Authority (UTA).208 In 2010 the TravelWise Program, in coordination with CommuterLink and Express Lanes, reached out to Utah companies to encourage more efficient commuting and work-related travel. This coordinated effort allows UDOT's programs to work together to maximize the transportation system.209
Telework!VA Tax Legislation
In 2011, the Virginia General Assembly approved new tax credit legislation aimed at encouraging private sector telework. Defined as "a work arrangement where an employee is allowed to perform normal work duties at a location other than their central work location" teleworking is considered, by the General Assembly, to be an effective congestion management strategy to reduce highway traffic. It's also been shown to improve employee productivity, retention, and satisfaction.
The purpose of the Telework Tax Credit is to remove auto trips by eliminating commute trips to and from work. Only employees who travel to an office in Virginia qualify. The legislation provides for a tax credit (for new teleworkers) of up to $1,200 per employee and up to $50,000 per organization for eligible telework expenses incurred during taxable years 2012 and 2013. Additional legislation is required to continue this tax credit after 2013. Any business subject to Virginia income tax is eligible to apply for the tax credit. This is done through approval by the Virginia Department of Taxation. Employees must telework at least once a week in order for expenses incurred under the telework agreement to be eligible.
(Source: Virginia's Telework!VA webpage (http://www.teleworkva.org/go/for-managers/telework-tax-credit/))
11.2 Metropolitan Level
Metropolitan transportation planning provides the information, tools, and public input needed for improving transportation system performance. TDM strategies are part of a toolbox of actions available to those involved in MPOs for solving transportation problems. Currently, most MPOs provide an overall coordination role in planning and programming funds for projects and operations. However, MPOs can play many different roles in implementing TDM services. Some potential roles are listed below:
- Developing/Promoting Alternative Transportation Programs – MPOs and TMAs may develop/promote alternative transportation programs that support their members' and communities' concerns regarding access and congestion, environmental/sustainability goals, economic development, and land use planning. Commuter Connections – a program of the National Capital Region (NCR) Transportation Planning Board, the region's designated MPO at the MWCOG – provides commuter services and information to area residents and employers in order to reduce traffic congestion and emissions caused by SOVs.210 Core value-added services provided by Commuter Connections for NCR residents include the GRH program, Rideshare Tuesday, Telework Week, and Employer Services.211
- Providing Technical Assistance – MPOs may provide technical assistance/feedback in reviewing TMA work plans. TMAs are public/private partnerships, focused on an employment center or other geographic area, formed to provide collaborative TDM services to member employers and others. MPOs may also provide input on TDM activities they would like the TMA to pursue. For example, the New Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA) is encouraging the TMAs in its service area to undertake anti-idling activities in their work plan.212
- Leveraging Public and Private Funds – TMAs also work together to gain funding from public and private entities to increase the use of various TDM activities, thereby reducing traffic congestion and improving air quality. MassCommute – a group of 11 private, non-profit business associations in Massachusetts – works together to leverage public and private funds to increase the use of ridesharing and other commuting alternatives.213 In addition, NJTPA provided funding to the TMAs, through its local CMAQ Mobility Initiative, to conduct an online survey for a bus study.214
- Integrating TDM into Operations – Similar to State DOTs, MPOs may consider integrating demand management into operations. The San Francisco Bay Area Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) created the Regional ITS Plan as a roadmap for transportation systems integration in the Bay Area over the next 10 years.215 One ITS project initiated by the MTC involves a comprehensive phone and web source for up-to-the-minute Bay Area traffic, transit, rideshare, and bicycling information, known as the Bay Area 511 Program (511). 511 unites several traveler information programs into a one-stop resource on traffic conditions, incidents and driving times.216
11.3 Corridor Level
Effective corridor improvement projects seek to maximize the efficient use and capacity of a roadway and/or transit corridor. As such, transportation management strategies have been integrated as effective components to promote alternative modes, increase vehicle occupancy, reduce travel distances, and ease peak hour congestion.217 TDM elements have played a key role in corridor projects.
- Construction Mitigation – Major corridor infrastructure projects often take many years to complete and affect transportation capacity and access to adjacent businesses. TDM programs applied at this level provide critical mitigation strategies to reduce the negative impacts of construction. The Houston-Galveston Area Council seeks to integrate transportation management programs by providing traveler information regarding construction activities, working with corridor employees and other businesses to develop access alternatives, and coordinating with transit agencies to adjust existing transportation facilities and services.
- Employer-Based Programs – Extensive employer-based TDM efforts may be conducted for an entire corridor, in order to reduce SOV commuting and VMT to worksites. WSDOT initiated an extensive employer-based program on the I-405 Corridor in the Seattle area. Efforts included telework, alternative work arrangements, tax credits, parking cash-out incentives, and an expansion of the CTR program.218
11.4 Local Level
A quantifiable and results-driven local TDM program can achieve greater transparency to its stakeholders, provide a clearer linkage to related strategies and initiatives, strengthen its role as a significant player within an integrated approach between land use and transportation, and offer a better return on investment to funding partners.219 Implementing TDM at the local level involves TDM programming initiatives, strategies, and policies in short-, mid-, and long-term time frames.
- Administering full-service TDM Programs – Local TDM programs have broadened their scope of activities from a narrow focus on marketing a single mode into full-service programs that promote all non-drive modes of transportation. The City of Alexandria (VA) TDM program, LocalMotion, promotes a range of tools and resources for accessing destinations throughout the city. This expanded range of services affirms the program's commitment to improving mobility.220
- Monitoring Developer Programs – Many cities place requirements on new developments to mitigate trip generation through TDM and other trip reduction measures. City staff review site development plans, place TDM conditions, and then work to help implement and monitor the programs' success in meeting its trip reduction targets. In some cases, future phases of development are conditioned on meeting and documenting these reductions.
- Building Strategic Partnerships – Local TDM programs are coordinating with leading local companies to promote their employer-based programs, for those not currently participating, or to support their recruitment and retention efforts, for those participating. The LocalMotion program continually coordinates with the Local Chamber of Commerce, Alexandria Economic Development Partnership (AEDP), Small Business Association, and Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) to gain feedback and promote their programs.
- Developing Youth Programs – Local programs integrate demand management into youth programs, encouraging children to learn about public transportation. The Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission (PRTC) has implemented two programs, the Preschool and Elementary Student Program and the Teen Summer Pass Program, with a third program currently in development, the Middle School Program. The Preschool and Elementary Student Program involves a Safe Bus Adventure Program where children are taught about bus safety rules and the benefits of using transit.221 The Teen Summer Pass Program provides those ages 13-19 with unlimited Omnilink rides all summer for a one-time cost of $30.222
11.5 Funding of TDM Programs
For states and MPOs that plan, administer, and deliver core TDM services, various federal, state, metropolitan, and private funding programs are available for TDM program implementation.
Federal funds have been a main source for TDM programs. A 2006 study of nine regional TDM programs conducted by the Center for Transportation and the Environment (CTE) found that over two-thirds of TDM funding came from federal sources. The most significant of these federal sources are CMAQ, the STP; and the Transportation, Community and System Preservation Program. All require the participation of DOTs and in many cases, MPOs, with a default funding match requirement of 80%. The 2006 study by CTE also found that state (16 percent) and local (18 percent) funding are also significant alternative sources of TDM funding for states and MPOs.
Another funding source is the STP, which provides flexible funding that may be used by states and localities for projects on any Federal-aid highway, including the National Highway System. Carpool, pedestrian, bicycle, and safety projects may be implemented with STP funding on roads of any functional classification, under the provisions of 23 U.S.C. 133(c). Similar to the CMAQ program, STP is considered a "flexible fund" where a state DOT can direct dollars to non-highway modes and the associated non-DOT agency, typically a public transit agency. As an example, the Oregon Department of Transportation operates its "Flexible Funding Program" through STP funds. Through the Flexible Fund program, MPOs and other agencies submit applications for projects that improve modal connectivity, mobility, the environment, and access.
As it relates to TDM, Federal/State Planning Research (SPR) funds may be used to plan for TDM; monitor and analyze the effectiveness of TDM; and integrate/mainstream TDM and related activities into general transportation plans and programs. For example, SPR funds may be utilized for a "before and after" study of a new TDM program, known as a "state of the commute" report, which tallies regional TDM usage and effectiveness, and/or SPR funds may be used for a commuter survey to assess potential future TDM strategies.
However, non-federal funding sources are playing an increasingly significant funding role in providing leverage for matching federal funds, especially in areas currently ineligible for federal funds or where federal funds are unavailable. Such non-federal funds might include:
- State transportation funds and grants.
- Local sales tax funds (dedicated to transportation).
- Local general fund sources.
- Developer impact fees.
- Special grants (e.g., smart growth, livability).
- Parking revenue sources.
For example, at a state level, the Virginia DRPT Transportation Efficiency Improvement Fund (TEIF) Program supports new and/or expanded transportation services and facilities that reduce demand for SOVs and initiatives at the state, regional, and community level.223 Eligible grant recipients include the following public transportation agencies: local and state government, transportation district commissions, public service corporations, planning district commissions, private corporations, and TMAs. The TEIF Program includes projects in all categories of public transportation and TDM are eligible, including: parking management, employee benefits, improved public transportation facility access, flexible work hours, and telecommuting. Program emphasis areas include services that reduce VMT by SOV; involve the public sector and enhance economic development; support modal connectivity; increase AVR; and utilize advanced technology to improve productivity and quality of public transportation and TDM services.224
At a city level, the establishment and funding of Transit Management Organizations and Transportation Management Districts is one way to incorporate TDM programs. For example, The Warner Center Transit Management Organization (TMO) was established in the late 1980s between the City of Los Angeles and the Warner Center developer, as it is the third largest urban center in the city, housing millions of square feet of commercial office space, apartments, and condominiums.225 Through the purchase of the land, the primary developer agreed to include an additional $5 million contribution to a trust fund for the creation and support of a TMO. Subsequently, for every commuter that a new developer's office space will attract, the developer must pay $3,500 into the trust fund. As such, the TMO receives $85,000 from the trust fund to spend on transportation improvements, such as widened roads, additional traffic lights, additional freeway lanes, and improved public transit.
Similarly, The North Bethesda TMD was established in 1994 to address traffic and air quality issues in Montgomery County, Maryland.226 In proposing the TMD's creation, the county identified public parking charges—parking meter payments, parking violation fines, and monthly permits for public parking lots – as the best sources of revenue to support the program. As such, the county installed more than 800 new parking meters in areas identified by a number of factors, including the area's composition of business (retail vs. office space) and the prevailing parking rates in nearby private garages. The county's goal was to determine an effective placement strategy and rate schedule. Since 1996, the county's parking meters have generated gross revenues of over $240,000 per year, parking fines have generated $123,000 per year, and monthly parking permit sales have earned the county $230,000 per year.227
Arizona DOT Capitol Rideshare – http://capitolrideshare.com/files/services.htm, accessed 01/12/2012
Arizona DOT Multimodal Planning Air Quality Planning – http://mpd.azdot.gov/mpd/air_quality/hpa.asp, accessed 01/14/2012
California DOT State Route 4 Corridor System Management Plan Appendices – http://www.dot.ca.gov/dist4/systemplanning/docs/csmp/SR4_CSMP_appedices.pdf, accessed 01/16/2012
Commuter Connections: Washington Metropolitan Region Transportation Demand Management Resource Guide and Strategic Marketing Plan – http://www.mwcog.org/commuter2/pdf/publication/SMP-FY12-Final-Report-December20,%202011.pdf, accessed 01/16/2012
Commuter Connections - http://www.mwcog.org/commuter2/commuter/index.html, accessed 01/16/2012
LOCAL MOTION: A Long Range TDM Plan for Local Motion – http://alexandriava.gov/localmotion/info/default.aspx?id=45180, accessed 01/15/2012
Massachusetts DOT Remarks to the Association for Commuter Transportation – http://www.massdot.state.ma.us/Portals/0/Downloads/infoCenter/remarks/ACT_061010.pdf, accessed 01/13/2012
MassCommute – http://www.masscommute.com/masscommute_mission.htm, accessed 01/13/2012
National Highway Cooperative Research Program, "State Department of Transportation Role in the Implementation of Transportation Demand Management Programs," Project 20-65 Task 24, July 2010
New Jersey DOT Traffic Mitigation Guidelines - http://www.state.nj.us/transportation/eng/documents/TMG/TMG.shtm#s36, accessed 01/14/2012
Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission Preschool and Elementary Student Program – http://www.prtctransit.org/special-programs/youth-programs/kids-programs.php, accessed 01/16/2012
Potomac and Rappahannock Commission Teen Summer Pass Program – http://www.prtctransit.org/special-programs/youth-programs/teen-programs.php, accessed 01/16/2012
San Francisco Bay Area Metropolitan Transportation Commission: Planning: Intelligent Transportation Systems: Bay Area ITS Architecture – http://www.mtc.ca.gov/planning/ITS/, accessed 01/16/2012
Transportation Demand Management and Corridor Planning: A Guidebook for Houston Area Planners, Engineers and Policy Makers – http://www.commutesolutionshouston.org/resources/TDM_and_Corridor_Planning.pdf, accessed 01/14/2012
Utah DOT – TravelWise, http://www.udot.utah.gov/main/f?p=100:pg:0::::T,V:2375,50746, accessed 01/14/2012
Utah DOT – TravelWise, http://www.udot.utah.gov/main/f?p=100:pg:0::::T,V:2375,50746, accessed 01/14/2012
Virginia DOT – Telework!VA, http://www.teleworkva.org/, accessed 01/13/2012.
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