This document distills best practices in preparation of rural and statewide ITS deployment plans from 12 in-depth case studies and 18 sites surveyed by written questionnaire. The ultimate goal is to identify factors that should be considered by agencies undertaking such planning projects. The report also documents the benefits of this planning so that these benefits can encourage future ITS strategic planning efforts nationwide.
This document addresses institutional rather than technical issues with emphasis on the complex decision-making process required for ITS strategic planning. This process includes agency interactions, processes and procedures, organizational structures, and the level of institutional involvement.
- The document uses the case studies/surveys to summarize the following aspects of deployment, and lays out guidance highlights (lessons learned) addressing many of these items:
- The ITS strategic planning process, including regional ITS architectures
- Goals and objectives of creating an ITS strategic plan
- Effective stakeholder participation
- Best practices for outreach, education, and marketing
- Funding opportunities and sources, including public/private partnerships
- Operations, maintenance, and management considerations
- Costs of planning
- Potential benefits
The case studies themselves appear in appendices.
This document, along with the Rural Toolbox (FHWA-OP-01-030), forms the rural ITS best practices series.
Use the systems goal/objectives as the initial source of desired system functionality and then use concepts in the National ITS Architecture to develop appropriate ITS projects.
The region should use the system goals/objectives as the initial source of desired system functionality. Through an iterative process, stakeholders can develop the state's/region's fundamental system functional requirements by breaking down previously documented system goals and objectives. These fundamental system functional requirements should then be allocated to functional areas necessary to support the system.
One of the first steps is to identify the Urban and Rural ITS functions to incorporate in the region/state. With stakeholder involvement, the planners should define what the system should do, performing requirements, and who is responsible for making it all work. Information for this "concept-of-operations" can be drawn from material developed as part of the National ITS Architecture and enhanced with additional information developed locally by stakeholders and/or consultant support.
The next step is to make the transition from Market Packages to ITS Projects by identifying initial ITS project elements that cover specific geographic areas, determining specific location(s) for deployment, and assigning Agency roles/responsibilities (e.g., procurement, deployment, O&M, etc.). At this stage, the planners should begin to consider technology options and start to identify concrete project implementation time frames (i.e., short-, medium-, long-term).
Stakeholders should relate the ITS projects back to the needs/problems and goals/objectives identified earlier in the process to make sure that the ITS Strategic assessment is still on-track. As appropriate, it is recommended that ITS projects be defined early in the planning process to keep stakeholders actively engaged.
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