News

Compact, connected development patterns on the rise since mid-1990s

By Chris McCahill Low density, disconnected development patterns—or sprawl—peaked in the mid-1990s, then declined by as much as 9 percent in the following decades, according to a new analysis of street patterns published by the National Academy of Sciences. Because of its innovative

It’s not all about the mode: Race and gender bias in yielding to non-motorized road users

By Mary Ebeling Two recent studies suggest that bias in driver behavior toward other road users could be contributing to enhanced stress levels for certain groups of pedestrians and bicyclists. Recent research documents a difference in drivers yielding to pedestrians based on race in Portland,

Austin, Texas sees road safety and operations improvements with “right sizing”

By Robbie Webber Austin, Texas has released a report detailing their 15-year effort to “right size” streets throughout the city, and the results have been positive. Travel times on the studied segments have not increased, crashes are down by as much as 38 percent, and high-risk speeding has

Vermont taking steps to reduce the number of drivers with suspended licenses

By Bill Holloway The Vermont Agency of Transportation is working to reduce the number of state residents with suspended licenses. As reported by Vermont Public Radio, there are about 30,000 Vermonters with suspended licenses at any time in the state with 626,000 people. The majority of these

Virginia adopts multimodal, competitive project scoring process

By Eric Sundquist Last year Virginia enacted legislation to select state-supported transportation projects through a multimodal, competitive process. State-of-good-repair projects, such as bridge and pavement rehabilitation, as well as highway safety projects, were exempt. But a wide range of

New study links low-cost and free recreation facilities near work sites with active commuting

By Bill Holloway A recently released study from researchers at Washington University in St. Louis has added further detail to our understanding of the link between commuting mode choice and workplace and environmental variables. The study relied on phone interviews with 1,338 commuters living in

Equitable access to opportunity: The growing distance between people and jobs

By Mary Ebeling Recent studies show that travel times and costs for all commuters are increasing, particularly in the past five years. A recent Citi Premier commuter index documents commuting costs an average of $2,600 per year, or around $12 a day. These costs are regressive in nature, creating

Walking and biking form ‘third pillar’ of transportation in Wasatch Front plan

By Chris McCahill In its newly released 25-year Regional Transportation Plan, Utah’s Wasatch Front Regional Council—which controls more than half of available statewide transportation funds—makes active transportation one of its three major transportation pillars, in addition to highways

Oregon user-fee launches July 1 with three program options

By Robbie Webber The first program to charge a per-mile fee to drivers will launch July 1 in Oregon. Although beginning with only 5,000 volunteers, the program will continue to expand as an alternative to reliance on the gas tax. Other states are considering similar programs as gas tax revenues

Geographic preference in FHWA and FTA contracting—balancing competition with local hiring preferences

By Mary Ebeling For 40 years state, local, and tribal governments that wished to use local hiring preferences for transportation projects have been prevented from doing so by federal restrictions barring this consideration. The restriction prevents governments from offering workforce development