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Chapter 5: Implementation Strategy

The scan team firmly believes that much can be gained in the United States by implementing the various congestion management strategies discussed in this report on congested roadway networks. To that end, the scan team plans a number of activities and initiatives to disseminate information from the scan and move the recommendations forward within the context of congestion management in the United States.

Implementation Action Plan

The implementation initiatives and strategies identified by the scan team include, but are not limited to, the following items.

Executive Strategy Forum

To obtain the highest success for adoption and implementation of the recommended management strategies, the scan team recommends holding an executive strategy forum with selected and invited agency stakeholders who are pursuing innovative managed lane programs. The purpose of this forum would be to present results of a feasibility study from one candidate location, seek support for studies from several other areas, and involve some of the forum participants in a followup meeting of AASHTO members and FHWA staff to explore more widespread adoption and implementation. The specific actions comprising the executive strategy forum are described below.

Strategic Highway Research Program II Capacity Operations Research

In future meetings of this group, agencies will work to ensure that capacity operations and other issues related to active traffic management are considered for research topics.

White Paper

With a heavy emphasis on transportation planning, this paper will provide an overview of the congestion challenges in Europe and the United States. Because of constraints to building more capacity, European countries have shifted to a focus on active traffic management. This paper will focus on planning processes and tools to make the cost/benefit case for active traffic management. Planning study areas will be both corridor- and systemwide.

NCHRP Synthesis

A proposal was submitted to NCHRP for a research synthesis on the state of the practice of managed lane applications in the United States. It was determined that a more prudent use of the money would be to host a peer exchange on managed lanes that includes areas where managed lane activities are underway.

NCHRP Research

This proposed research project will develop guidance to allow practitioners to identify the operational concepts, requirements, and other special needs associated with planning, designing, and implementing advanced pricing, eligibility, and access control strategies for flexible operations and active system management. The project will identify operational and design issues associated with meeting these requirements under different environmental conditions (e.g., type of network, urban characteristics, levels of congestion, available right of way) and develop technical guidance on approaches to overcome them. Expected deliverables include technical guidance and a report of recommendations for additional research on issues that could not be resolved within the scope of the effort.

FHWA and FTA Guidance

The FHWA Offices of Planning and Operations are developing guidance on the congestion management process. Included in this guidance will be a discussion on how active traffic management can be considered within the congestion management process.

FHWA Analysis Tool

The FHWA Offices of Planning and Operations are continuing the development of technical analysis tools to support operational and ITS investments. Simulation and sketch tools under development include ITS Deployment Analysis System (IDAS), Dynasmart-P, and VISUM/VISSIM.

Marketing and Outreach

Marketing and outreach materials, such as an audio-visual presentation, executive briefings, and an informational one-pager or brochure, will be developed to increase awareness of the active management concept and other findings and recommendations from this scan.

FHWA Group

The FHWA Office of Operations will initiate an interdisciplinary work group to focus on the planning, design, and operations aspects of managed lanes and identify national initiatives to promote active management.

Public-Private Partnerships

The current testing of alternate project delivery systems, particularly those involving major managed lane initiatives in various States, offers the opportunity to mainstream recommended strategies from this scanning study. However, an understanding and application of strategies will need to be disseminated to both proposers and agency owners. Activities such as creating a template for solicitations and negotiations that include performance goals and measures, financing active traffic management, and training are recommended to accomplish this objective.

Managed Lanes Domestic Scan

The purpose of the domestic scan is to examine the programs, policies, and practices of various States that are either in the planning phase or have implemented and are operating managed lane facilities on freeways. This domestic scan will supplement the international scan to promote the benefits of active management. The scan will provide States that are ready to deploy managed lanes an opportunity to gather and compile technical and institutional best practices, lessons learned, and peer exchange information on the planning, design, implementation, operations, and management of managed lanes through site visits and group discussions.

FHWA Managed Lanes Program Plan

Update the FHWA Freeway Management Program Plan and Roadmaps based on the findings and recommendations from this scanning study.


The scan team saw active traffic management in action in Europe. It was clearly evident that through the deployment of this congestion management approach and its component strategies, agencies overseas have control over entire facilities and are able to fully optimize their investment in the infrastructure to meet the needs of customers. The benefits realized because of the deployment of active traffic management are a testament to its potential for the United States. Countries have been able to implement active traffic management and gain acceptance from the public and policymakers because they see real results. There is no reason why this approach to congestion management cannot be implemented in the United States with similar results. For this reason, the scan team firmly believes that active traffic management is the next evolution in congestion management in the United States and we have much to learn from the experiences in Europe to make it a reality at home.

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Page last modified on November 7, 2014
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