Friday, February 7, 2014

Is This Your DOT?

Cross-posting from the Professional Urbanists listserv.  What follows is a critique of a state DOT commissioned by the very same state.  The actual state has been left anonymous, because it really could be just about any.  Such is the calcification within entrenchment.

 (The state DOT):
1.       ...is significantly out of step with best practice in the transportation field
2.       has not come to grips with the reality of induced traffic and the relationship between transportation and land use
3.       use of automotive LOS... has been a barrier to compact development sought by state policy and may have induced the opposite -- low density, high travel exurban development
4.       design guides are too inflexible... do not do enough to mainstream facilities for non-single-occupancy vehicle travel into project development
5.       rigidity of guidance gives rise to requests for design exceptions, which all stakeholders characterized as a painful and time-consuming process
Recommendations:
1.       System preservation should be a primary message
2.       DOT ... should strengthen its planning unit
3.       ... should update the design and traffic control device manuals
4.       ... should relinquish oversight of bike facilities on locally owned streets
5.       … give designers option of using NACTO urban design standards in metro areas
6.       ... rethink approach to facilities in metro areas and town centers
7.       ... build more flexibility into its processes
8.       ... assert leadership in area of sustainable transportation in relations with regional partners
9.       ... find ways to transfer local-serving roads to local government
10.   ... ensure communications with local stakeholders are genuine and two-way
11.   ... improve staff training and workforce development