Committee | 2014

2014 DRAFT Triennial Strategic Plan


Committee Triennial Strategic Plan (TSP) Committee Name and Number: AHB70, TRB Access Management Committee

Committee Chairperson: Marc Butorac, Kittelson and Associates, Inc.

TSP Three­Year Period: April 2014 – April 2017

Date Prepared: August 2014

Committee Future Outlook Statement:

Current Committee Scope

The committee will share the latest knowledge, expertise and experience to facilitate leadership and partnerships to advance the state?of?the?practice in access management and its integration into established planning, policy and design processes.[OU2] 

Factors and influences that will shape the committee’s activities[OU3] [OU4] 

Access management has the potential to significantly improve the safety and operation of the transportation system at relatively low cost. It is the careful consideration of the location, type and design of access to a roadway and adjacent land development and involves a range of strategies to reduce conflicts among the various facility users. It grew from a recognition that vehicular maneuvers and volumes at each access point or intersection have measurable and cumulative impacts on the safety and operation of the transportation system. The concept concentrates on restricting the number of direct accesses to major surface streets, providing reasonable indirect access, effectively designing driveways, enforcing safe and efficient spacing and location of access, providing medians on major roadways, and introducing auxiliary lanes for left and right turns. The practice is expanding to integrate access management principles into all modes of travel, including strategies for safe and efficient pedestrian, bicycle, and transit access.


Factors and influences that support access management include: worsening congestion in urban areas and lack of funding for major capital improvements is leading to growing interest in  strategies to maintain and manage the existing system; the push for improved safety and safety research funding; budget deficits in all levels of government and the fact that access management is a low cost strategy; growing interest in strategies for integrating transportation and land use; growing interest and need to integrate access management principles and strategies into non?auto modes of travel and other community interests, such as livability, economic development, and multimodal needs.

Factors and influences that impede access management include: a general lack of familiarity with contemporary practice of access management and its benefits; lack of nationally accepted guidelines; limited tools to predict the impacts of access management techniques; lack of case studies and examples of successful practices[OU6] ; lack of federal policy support; the need for numerous agency functions, jurisdictions and levels of government, to coordinate in planning and implementation; local stakeholder opposition, particularly by the business community; lack of resources along with a continuing need for outreach and education of agency management, staff, consultants, public officials, and the general public.

Given these factors, the Access Management Committee will continue its aggressive and proactive approach to developing new research, marketing, and mainstreaming access management, with mainstreaming as our overarching goal. Our primary strategic objectives for the future are:[OU7] 

  1. Increase agency and public awareness and use of access management, nationally and internationally, including its benefits and relationship to livability and sustainability;
  2. Identify unmet access management research needs and promote needed research
  3. Maintain and update the Access Management Website as the primary portal for access management information and guidance, and increase its utility as an outreach tool.
  4. Maintain and update the Access Management Manual and developing supporting national guidelines[OU8] .[OU9] 

The Committee is optimistic as it has successfully achieved funding of two key NCHRP projects – NCHRP 03?99 Development and Application of Access Management Guidelines and NCHRP 15?43? Second Edition of the TRB Access Management Manual. We are concerned by the elimination of the access management program within FHWA and corresponding diminished funding support for our website, conference, and outreach activities even as the need for outreach and training on access management continues to grow. FHWA’s National Highway Institute will continue to present a 3? day short course on access management. [OU10] However, the Committee must branch out to other  sources, including state?funded research and pooled?fund efforts, to support our outreach and training objectives. We also must continue to seek support through universities, professional organizations, and foundations.[OU11] 

Committee Plan:

Emerging issues inside and outside the committee scope[OU12] 

Performance measures and monitoring of access management, along with tools or methodologies for evaluating access management impacts, are sorely needed. The operational benefits [OU13] of access management techniques, in particular, have not been sufficiently documented. Research and development of predictive tools and analysis methods is essential. This may be addressed through liaison activities with other Committees in the Operations and Maintenance Group[OU14] , including the Highway Capacity and Quality of Service Committee (AHB40), Operational Effects of Geometrics Committee (AHB65), Geometric Design Committee (AFB10), and Intersections Joint Subcommittee.

Maximizing modal opportunities [OU15] within a balanced complete streets framework has emerged as a consideration in the planning, design and maintenance of transportation corridors. Access management’s strategic position between policy and technical considerations places it in the forefront of safety, air quality, energy and livability decision making.  The relationship of access management to non?auto modes, sustainability, and livability, is a topic of growing importance that would benefit from additional research and liaison activities with several other Committees at TRB in the Public Transportation Group (AP000) [e.g. Bus Transit Systems (AP050), Transit Management and Performance (AP010), Public Transportation Planning and Development  (AP025), and Major Activity Center Circulation Systems (AP040)] and the Pedestrians and Cycles Section (ANF00) [e.g. . Pedestrians (ANF10), Bicycle Transportation (ANF20)].

The Access management Committee is well suited to contribute to several critical and cross cutting issues identified by the Policy and Organization Group, and especially the following:

  • Safety – still inadequate (in part because access management has not been sufficiently mainstreamed!)
  • Congestion – growing (access management offers a relative low cost strategy for reducing bottlenecks and delay)
  • Infrastructure – enormous aging, capital stock to maintain (access management offers numerous strategies for improved management of existing facilities)
  • Institutions – adopting a systems perspective, emphasizing operations, integrating priorities across levels of government (this is what we do!)

Workforce development is another critical issue that we actively address on several levels (e.g. university access management courses and materials, conference workshops, webinars, marketing of the National Highway Institute short course.)

Projects and Activities

The committee has three subcommittees to advance its scope through the following projects and activities:

  1. Research:[OU16]  identify research needs and develop research statements for NCHRP and other funding sources; peer review of access management research papers; coordinate sessions at TRB Annual Meeting; issue calls for papers; disseminate research findings; identify opportunities for joint paper sessions.
  2. Outreach:  continues the testing and expansion of the recent content management conversion of the the national website, continues the development and use of the social media platform, , supports and markets topical conferences and webinars, promote and support training and workforce development; encourage presentations and sessions at conferences; collect case studies/examples/photographs of effective access management projects; develop outreach materials; develop strategies to mainstream access management (e.g. promote integration of AM in federal regulations, MPO prioritization processes).
  3. Conference: coordinate national (every two years) and international (every 5 years) access management conferences and workshops; develop conference technical programs; identify corporate and agency co?sponsors; coordinate student poster competitions.

Committee members are encouraged to become liaisons with other related TRB Committees and to communicate cross?cutting issues and opportunities to the full Committee (and vice versa).

Appendix A[OU17]  contains our current liaison list and a history of key activities. We are currently shifting the website platform to Drupal to increase its utility as an outreach and information tool. The Committee is positioning the website to support the NCHRP 03?99 AMAG (access management application guidelines) and hopes to also host the second edition of the TRB Access Management Manual.[OU18] 

Membership Strategies

The Committee will continue to actively seek a geographically diverse membership that represents various disciplines, levels of government, universities, and the private sector. We continually seek out access management champions through various networks, conferences, and activities, enlist them as Committee “friends” and encourage their membership. We select members from groups that are underrepresented on the Committee during each rotation. Friends are encouraged to become members of subcommittees to aid them in obtaining travel approval and to serve as an active pool for future Committee membership. We actively seek out young and international members and increased female membership from two in the mid?1990s to six in[OU19]  2011. However, we have not achieved an acceptable increase in minority membership and continue to have difficulty attracting state, MPO and local agency members due to travel restrictions and  tight budgets.


Much of our effort will continue to be focused on communication and outreach. We have hosted 10 national conferences to date (with on in the planning stages for 2015), one international conference (with one scheduled for Fall 2014),, conducted conference presentations and sessions, offered workshops and webinars, engaged in national teleconferences, produced and disseminated DVDs, promoted the NHI short course on access management, and developed an access management logo and identity brand. We are shifting the website to a Drupal platform to [OU20] increase its utility and positioning it to host the NCHRP 03?55 access management guidelines and the updated TRB Access Management Manual. We created an access management listserv in 2011 to facilitate discussions and information sharing and may organize a “virtual” conference in 2014.[OU21] 

Proposed changes in scope No changes are proposed.

Optional: Additional Products


 [OU1]I have a lot of general comments here, not a lot of changes.  I thought it best in the first round to get everyone’s comments and then move toward actual changes.  I also think we need to have someone who worked on the new AMM and AMAG help with this as there is a lot from those projects that affects this and since I was not involved, I am not sure how to address it.

 [OU2]This has always struck me as being a bit limited.  Page 3 of the 1st Ed AMM defines Access Management as “systematic” (among other things).  It strikes me that systematic needs to grow beyond the engineering and planning aspects to which it has historically held.  Let’s consider “systematic” in terms of intergovernmental partnerships (federal, state, regional, local) and in terms of public/private partnerships.  Let’s also consider a more direct and proactive integration of the demand side of things (land use) as a systematic approach to the supply/demand economic system for which access is the gate valve.

 [OU3]Christina has brought up before, and I think she’s absolutely correct, that this whole section is an opportunity to tie A.M. to the whole MAP-21 regulatory framework.  A.M. is the most provably effective (and cost-effective) toolkits in existence for meeting congestion and safety performance measures.

 [OU4]This will likely need to be updated based on verbiage in the new manual.

 [OU5]Should we discuss performance measures here?

 [OU6]Is this still a concern?  Maybe an area we should focus on in research?

 [OU7]Should one of our primary strategic objectives for the future now be to promote the new AMM and AMAG?  It seems like our last strategic objective was to get it written, maybe now we need to focus on getting it implemented (once it is actually published).

 [OU8]It it appropriate somewhere in this section to discuss the pivot to internet and social media platforms?  Given diminishing funding platforms, the Committee’s efforts to redevelop the website as a content management system, and establish a social media presence to drive traffic to the website (and advertise activities)?

 [OU9]Are we still pushing in this direction?

 [OU10]With the publication of AMM2 and AMAG, it is critical that the Committee push for the redevelopment of the NHI course.  It remains one of the most requested courses in the catalog, but is woefully out of date.

 [OU11]It seems appropriate to mention our wildly successful international efforts.  One international conference is in the history books, and two more are scheduled.  There is also the work with SAICE (South Africa) that has been done, and I’m betting we could come up with one or two other examples.

 [OU12]There are two other emerging issues that need to be discussed this time around.  1. We have an approved NCHRP project to examine the economic impacts of poorly coordinated development because A.M. is seen as one of those unduly burdensome governmental regulations that impede economic activity. 2. There are two recent state supreme court cases that have awarded business damages for changes in access.

 [OU13]New funded research project.

 [OU14]We have been doing a good job with these committees.

 [OU15]How much of this is covered in the new manual?

 [OU16]If we go with the current Subcommittee Roles and Responsibilities it would be the following:

•              Peer-review access management research papers and nominate practice ready papers

•              Coordinate session at the Transportation Research Board (TRB) Annual Meeting

•              Assist in the development of research statements for National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) solicitations

•              Assist in the development of general research problem statements

•              Help in the identification of gaps in access management research

•              Share knowledge and research related to access management from local area

•              Act as an advocate for access management research

 [OU17]This is the first mention of Appendix A, yet it is not the first thing in Appendix A.  Should we have more than one Appendix?  Or at least discuss the Appendix earlier?

 [OU18]Since this didn’t happen, is the Drupal website as necessary as it once was?  Is it up and running?  I have been confused by the website when I have tried to access it in the last few months.

 [OU19]This will all need to be updated or removed.

 [OU20]Again, how important is this now?  I suppose it is too late to not change it.

 [OU21]Do we still want to look at this for the future?

 [OU22]This was not there.