This year, ADD40 is very pleased to have accepted 13 papers for presentation at TRB 2013 in the following sessions:
- Session 274: Emerging Tools for Transportation Sustainability: Decision-Making Platforms, Integration Approaches, Rating Systems, and Analysis Frameworks
(Monday, January 14, 2013 10:15AM – 12:00PM Hilton, Columbia Hall 6)
- Session 357: Sustainability in Transportation
(Monday, January 14, 2013 2:00PM – 3:45PM Hilton, International Center Poster Session)
Session 685: Implementing Sustainability in Transportation Agencies
(Tuesday, January 15, 2013 7:30PM – 9:30PM Hilton, International West)
13-1772 – An Approach for Integrating Sustainability into Roadway Project Development
Lisa M Reid (corresponding), CH2M HILL ([email protected])
Anneke J Davis, CH2M HILL ([email protected])
Efforts to increase the sustainability of roadways continue to gain momentum. In recent years, numerous organizations and agencies have developed sustainability evaluation tools, including third-party rating systems, self-assessments, and checklists, with the goal of evaluating the sustainability characteristics and performance of roadway projects. While these sustainability tools are highly valuable and the result of much research and knowledge, there is little guidance on how to apply and leverage them to best integrate sustainability throughout project development. The focus of this paper, in addition to providing considerations for using sustainability evaluation tools and summarizing the available tools and, is to provide an approach for integrating sustainability into project development by leveraging sustainability evaluation tools.
13-2175 – Green Rating Integration Platform – A Decision Making Tool for Multi-Modal Facilities: Sustainable Water & Material Practices
Ashraful Alam (corresponding), Washington State University ([email protected])
Liv Haselbach, Washington State University ([email protected])
To achieve sustainability goals and receive credit points for green certification, it is essential to understand the strategies to accomplish the sustainability objectives of a project. Sustainability rating systems come with project goals and strategies. However, among the multitude of sustainability rating systems and guidelines, it is difficult to decide which goals will earn more credit points and what methods need to be followed to achieve particular goals. In addition, multi-modal projects have different focal areas and associated rating systems related to each mode or other aspect of the project. Five green ratings systems representative of these aspects have been selected and analyzed through an analytical hierarchy process (AHP). Previous research resulted in synchronization of the rating system topical categories and synthesis of the credits. This work focused on the water and material aspects, and the associated detailed goals and green methodologies. Key intents from the project goals and key strategies from the methodologies were identified. The lists of key intents and key strategies across the rating systems were then harmonized using an AHP and further cross-coded in an open database with the credit subcategories and corresponding rating systems. The database can filter the credit subcategories across the rating system for a specific key intent or key strategy. The harmonized lists and database will facilitate decision makers and sustainability practitioners in evaluating intents and methodologies for a project across multiple rating systems and thus, aid in achieving the desired levels of sustainability for multi-modal facilities.
13-5328 – Sustainability Trends Measured by the Greenroads Rating System
Jeralee L. Anderson (corresponding), University of Washington ([email protected])
Stephen T. Muench, University of Washington ([email protected])
This paper presents the results of evaluating 105 roadway and bridge projects at various lifecycle stages located in the United States for sustainable design and construction practices using the Greenroads Rating System v1.5. Additionally, 40 of the projects claimed to include sustainable elements. These projects were compared to the remaining 65 typical projects to attempt to clarify what we actually mean when we characterize something like a roadway project as “green.” The results of these project evaluations show 1) that some credits and categories are easily achieved whereas others are more challenging and offer opportunities for improved environmental performance, 2) typical roadway projects tend not to go above and beyond environmental regulations, and 3) contractors and materials suppliers appear to have unrealized opportunities to contribute. Greenroads is determined to be an adequate measurement tool for sustainability in roadway design and construction projects because it can recognize more sustainable projects and also incrementally improve performance of typical projects with minimal additional effort low or no added cost. Finally, it is determined that “green” projects make an early commitment to improved sustainability performance and deliberately make choices in design and construction activities that exceed minimum constraints, resulting in measurable beneficial outcomes.
13-0348 – Developing a comprehensive sustainable transportation analysis framework
George A Dondero (corresponding), Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission ([email protected])
Peter Hurley, Portland Office of Transportation ([email protected])
As climate change became understood and accepted by state, regional and local governments, there has been a growing impetus to set goals and targets for reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and use of fossil fuels. Tools to prioritize and implement regional and local transportation sector emissions reduction policies have been unavailable to practitioners and policy makers. To fill this void, a grass roots group of transportation and sustainability professionals formed to develop a rating system and the planning tools needed to make measurable headway toward reducing both short-term and long-term emissions. A menu-based framework similar to that followed by creators of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building rating system was adopted. Since 2009 the Sustainable Transportation Analysis and Rating System (STARS) has been under development and is being tested on both transportation projects and regional plans. This paper identifies characteristics of STARS that advance the state of the practice while highlighting challenges and gaps. STARS provides a suite of credits incorporating tools and guidance based upon triple bottom line principles. Backcasting is used to establish desired future outcomes, rather than the more traditional forecasting process. STARS is designed to use consistent performance measures to analyze all transport modes and strategies over the full life cycle of a plan or project. A pilot project in Santa Cruz County, California is highlighted. Challenges encountered included introducing the new structure to the community and dealing with limited data availability. Performance monitoring will determine whether the system changes practices and outcomes.
13-1953 – How new technologies can contribute to measuring sustainable mobility
Caitlin D. Cottrill (corresponding), SMART-FM ([email protected])
Sybil Derrible, Singapore-Massachusetts Institute of Technology Alliance for Research and Technology ([email protected])
While much effort has been concentrated on making transportation more sustainable, the measurement of these efforts (through models, evaluation, or scenarios) is not trivial. In fact, not only is the selection of indicators challenging, but efforts made to design useful indicators are often hampered by the presence of data that are erroneous or incomplete. Nevertheless, the significant penetration of new technologies such as smartphones and smart infrastructure could hold the key to developing more relevant and comprehensive indicators. In this paper, we review commonly used indicators and discuss their limitations with respect to the data upon which they are built. We then describe several new technologies that hold promise for the collection of more pertinent and accurate data sets upon with indicators may be built. Finally, we discuss their potential for the future and illustrate a hypothetical scenario by reviewing a one-day GPS traces of one of the authors. While the first and obvious application of new technologies will be to improve much needed accuracy, combining different sources together seem to hold much potential from model calibration to real time operations.
13-2026 – Sustainable Transportation Policy Development Using System Dynamics and World Cities Data
Hossein Haghshenas (corresponding), Sharif University of Technology, Iran ([email protected])
Manouchehr Vaziri, Sharif University of Technology, Iran ([email protected])
In the study reported herein, a system dynamic model was developed, using pertinent data for a large of number world cities, in order to analyze and appraise urban transportation sustainability. The objective was to determine efficacious policies for sustainable transportation. The study database was developed based on few global urban transportation databases covering numerous cities for 4 decades: UITP Mobility in Cities Database, MCD, covering year 2001, UITP Millennium Cities Database for Sustainable Mobility, MCDST, covering year 1995 and An International Sourcebook of Automobile Dependence in Cities, ISADC, covering the period of 1960 to1990. Based on the study database, 9 sustainable transportation indicators were developed, 3 indicators for presenting each key group of environmental, economic and social urban sustainability. A composite index was also suggested for combining the developed indicators. To develop the pertinent urban dynamic model, urban transportation casual loops were conceptualized and the dynamic relations between urban transportation variables were created. Trip generation, trip distance, mode share and vehicle occupancy were the key modules of the model. Economic, social and environmental indicators were the key outputs of the model. The dynamic model inputs were urban characteristics relevant to transportation. The dynamic model testing and evaluation were found satisfactory using time-series data. For the city of Isfahan, as a case study, by monitoring the sustainable transportation indicators using different development scenarios, efficacious transportation policies were determined and evaluated. The model deployment reflected that policy makers are expected to develop policies pertinent to public and non-motorized transportation infrastructure integration.
13-2940 – Livability Literature Review: A Synthesis of Current Practice
Erika Young, National Association of Regional Councils ([email protected])
Valerie Hermanson (corresponding), National Association of Regional Councils ([email protected])
In 2009, the U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency collaborated to form the Partnership for Sustainable Communities. The Partnership developed six livability principles to improve access to affordable housing, provide more transportation options, and lower transportation costs, while protecting the environment in communities nationwide. Using the Partnership’s livability principles as guidance, NARC conducted an extensive review of local and regional comprehensive and master plans, reports and policy documents. The literature revealed difficulty in creating livability consensus concepts, livability and sustainability used as interchangeable terms, and ten trending topics used by practitioners to achieve livability goals. While the ten trending topics are not exhaustive, it serves as a starting point to further understand livability tactics and mechanisms that can be replicated on local, state and regional levels. This paper examines each trending topic as it relates to the livability principles to enhance the understanding, knowledge and implementation of livability.
13-3385 – Application and Findings: SWOT-based framework for evaluating transportation agencies’ sustainability approaches
Elise Barrella (corresponding), James Madison University ([email protected])
Adjo A. Amekudzi, Georgia Institute of Technology ([email protected])
Michael Meyer, Parsons Brinckerhoff ([email protected])
A national survey of State Departments of Transportation (DOTs) indicated that such agencies are engaged in a variety of activities to address sustainability issues associated with transportation planning, design, and operations. These activities range from piecemeal environmental practices like roadside mowing policies to comprehensive planning frameworks. However, state DOTs in general do not have sufficient policies or practices in place to evaluate and prioritize investment options that will promote environmental sustainability and sustainable development. For this research, a mixed-methods design employing an expert panel and case studies of individual State DOTs was used to develop, test, and evaluate a strategic planning tool that can help DOTs evolve more sustainable practices. The self-assessment tool was designed to guide agencies through identifying internal strengths and weaknesses in their planning frameworks and organizational structure and culture, characterizing features of the external environment as opportunities or threats, prioritizing areas for strategy development, and developing strategies that link the internal and external environments. Such a tool can also be used to monitor progress over time. The tool was tested by seven state DOTs, and three prominent themes were revealed: the importance of process in addition to content, integration between sustainability policies and implementation, and internal communication of the need and nature of change. The results of this study and of previous research suggest that DOTs’ sustainability approaches are at various levels of maturity, and the siloing of sustainability within the organizations is characteristic of earlier maturity levels.
13-3397 – Sustainable Communities: challenges in implementing standardized performance measures
Frank Gallivan (corresponding), ICF International ([email protected])
Kevin Ramsey, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ([email protected])
Performance measurement systems for public decision-making processes remain a work in progress for transportation planning, land use planning, and urban and regional planning generally. There is a particular need for performance measures that can guide the development of more sustainable transportation systems. This paper describes an effort to apply standardized performance measures in four different metropolitan and rural regions across the United States. Each pilot community was provided with a “Draft Guidebook for Sustainable Community Performance Measurement”, which lays out data sources and preliminary steps for calculating 17 proposed performance measures. The pilot efforts revealed several consistent challenges to establishing performance measures that can be calculated in a standardized way across multiple geographic regions. First, inconsistencies in data sources across regions, as well as different levels of technical capacity to calculate measures, mean that the accuracy of measures calculated varies from region to region. Second, some of the measures are more appropriate for application in urban areas than in suburban and rural areas. Third, if measures are expected to inform local planning processes, regions understandably want to customize them to reflect their own priorities. Customization results in measures that cannot be compared across regions. Based on these findings, we suggest that comparing sustainable community outcomes and trends in regions across the U.S. requires implementing standardized performance measures in a more centralized manner.
13-4113 – A Blueprint for Sustainability: One Department of Transportation’s Pursuit of Performance-Based Accountability
Lindsay K Maurer (corresponding), Planning Communities, LLC ([email protected])
Theodore Mansfield, North Carolina State University, Raleigh ([email protected])
Leigh Blackmon Lane, North Carolina State University, Raleigh ([email protected])
Julie Hunkins, North Carolina Department of Transportation ([email protected])
An increasing number of transportation agencies in the United States are using sustainability as a framing device for transportation decision making and to demonstrate performance-based accountability. Despite interest in sustainability as an organizing concept for transportation decision making, the practice of using sustainability to frame formal policy development at state departments of transportation is still in its formative stages. This paper presents the approach that has been taken by the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) to adopt sustainability as an agency value. Currently in the implementation phase, the Department’s “Blueprint for Sustainability” is not a standalone plan, but rather a set of principles, objectives, performance measures, and strategies that has been integrated into NCDOT’s overall strategic direction and policy framework. The process used to create this product has relied on a combination of internal and external outreach, agency introspection, and conversations with senior leadership to conceptualize sustainability in a way that resonates within the agency’s culture and context. A variety of lessons can be derived from this process, including the importance of flexibility, integration, and strategic coordination with related agency initiatives. Through the presentation and evaluation of the NCDOT process, this paper provides transportation practitioners with useful insights for how to integrate sustainability as an agency value and a decision-making framework.
13-4192 – Sustainable Transportation Infrastructure Investments and Mode Share Changes: A 20- year case study of Boulder, Colorado
Alejandro Henao (corresponding), University of Colorado, Denver ([email protected])
Wesley Marshall, University of Colorado, Denver ([email protected])
This case study examines the benefits of sustainable transportation infrastructure investments to a city transportation system in terms of mode shifts. Building pedestrian, bicycling, and transit facilities increases the capacity of a city’s transportation system; the results suggest that investments in such facilities are crucial to supporting transportation capacity while also enabling significant mode shifts from automobiles to walking, cycling, and transit. This paper reviews data from Boulder, Colorado, a city that has made substantial efforts to improve its multi-modal transportation infrastructure and services by investing in pedestrian, bicycle, and transit. This study examines the impacts of city-scale expansions of the scope and availability of transit, bicycle, and pedestrian infrastructure and service with respect to mode share changes. We first describe the relationship between the transportation infrastructure investments (supply) and mode share levels (demand); second, we draw research-informed conclusions between the two phenomena; and finally, we offer recommendations for cities seeking to invest in multi-modal transportation systems. The city’s transportation budgets for pedestrian, bicycling, and transit are examined in parallel with evidence from multiple community surveys and travel diaries to identify mode shifts from 1990 to 2009. Results suggest that substantial investments in new infrastructure and services supporting pedestrian, bicycling, and transit have occurred in conjunction with stable pedestrian travel as population has increased, and substantial increases in bicycle and transit mode share.
13-4636 – Optimal Sustainable Road Plans using Multi-objective Optimization Approach
Jin-Hyuk Chung (corresponding), Yonsei University, South Korea ([email protected])
Jin Hee Kim, Yonsei University, South Korea ([email protected])
In order to construct sustainable road network system, the three dimensions of sustainability, which are economic efficiency, environmental impact and social equity perspectives, should be significantly and simultaneously taken into account in planning stage. Since these dimensions have trade-off relationships among them, we developed a multi-objective optimization model for planning of optimal road capacity improvement strategy. The three indicators for measuring each dimension of sustainability were employed as the objectives of the proposed model. The total travel cost which consists of monetized value of travel time and operating cost was adopted as economic indicator. The total emission cost and the GINI coefficient based on the zonal accessibility were adopted as environmental indicator and equity indicator, respectively. An experimental test was performed with the three model scenarios which were investigated to compare the single- and multi-objective approach methods and different objective functions. We obtained the Pareto optimal solutions by using the elitist non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm. The results show that the proposed model which is based on multi-objective approach and considered all of the three dimensions of sustainability is more suitable to plan sustainable road network design. In addition, we suggested that the frequency rate of a link within Pareto solutions can be utilized for planning priority of capacity improvement strategy for maximizing sustainability on road network.
13-5154 – Indicators in the governance of sustainable transport policies in Japan
Henrik Gudmundsson (corresponding), Technical University of Denmark ([email protected])
Daisuke Fukuda, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan ([email protected])
The paper addresses the role of indicators to promote transitions towards a more sustainable transport future in Japan. Japanese transport seems to perform well in certain aspects of ‘sustainability’, ranging from a high share for rail passenger transport, to successful technological and organizational innovations, to being the first advanced economy to reverse the otherwise upward trend in the CO2 emissions from transport. On the other hand Japanese transport policy faces significant challenges from factors such as aging and decreasing population, restrained economic development, mounting public debt, urban sprawl, and devastating natural disasters. A range of governance measures have been adopted to assist in managing transport policy challenges, including the enhanced application of experimentation, monitoring and evaluation of plans, policies and institutions. Key to several of them is the use of indicators to measure and evaluate performance. The paper will focus on two cases: Performance evaluation in the road transport area, as undertaken by the Japanese Ministry of Land Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT); and the so-called ‘Eco-model’ cities program, also undertaken by the MLIT, using the case of Toyama City at the Japan Sea coast for illustration. In each case the approach to performance measurement will be outlined, the actual application will be presented, and the results in terms of how the indicators contribute to promote sustainable transport will be reviewed.