US Department of Transportation

FHWA PlanWorks: Better Planning, Better Projects

US Department of Transportation

FHWA Planworks: Better Planning, Better Projects

LRP-8: Adopt Preferred Plan Scenario

Long Range Transportation Planning

Description:

At this Key Decision, a preferred plan scenario is adopted for inclusion in the Draft LRTP. A comparison of the plan scenarios using the evaluation criteria, methods and measures is the basis for the selection of the preferred scenario. This represents the conclusion of the iterative process to evaluate and refine scenarios.

There is information in prior Key Decisions that informs this step. In order to effectively coordinate this Key Decision with integrated plans, there is a need to validate consistency with essential partner plans.

Basics:

The first table describes the purpose and anticipated outcome of a Key Decision. If the decision is federally mandated, the purpose and outcome will relate to the legal intent.

The second table describes roles for key partners with legal decision making authority in the transportation process. The roles indicate the influence a partner can have on a decision, and show each partner where their input is most needed. For a full understanding of roles see the Partner Portal.

Purpose

To evaluate proposed scenarios in order to identify the locally preferred scenario that addresses the deficiencies while supporting the vision and goals. The evaluation of the plan scenarios will include the application of the approved evaluation criteria, methods, and measures.

Outcome

The preferred scenario and documentation of the evaluation of scenarios.

Partner Role Type Description
MPO Decision Maker Adopts a preferred scenario that meets the regional goals and addresses the transportation deficiencies
FHWA/FTA Advisor Ensures the public review of the preferred scenario and subsequent adoption meet the governing requirements.
State DOT Advisor Ensures the adopted preferred scenario is compatible with state needs and plans.
Resource Agency Advisor Advise the selection of a preferred scenario that is consistent with resource agencies' goals. Advise the selection of a preferred scenario that is consistent with a joint vision for conservation/restoration action. Provide input to transportation agency partners about preferred mitigation strategies.
Public Transportation Operator(s) Advisor Ensures the adopted preferred scenario is compatible with transit needs and plans.

Questions to Consider

Questions are a way to gather input from partners and stakeholders that can be used to inform the decision. Decision makers can discuss the questions provided to ensure a broad array of interests are considered to support a collaborative process. Questions also allow staff to collect stakeholder interests, ensure these are included in the decision, and provide a response based on the decision outcome. Although Public Transportation is not represented by a PlanWorks Application, the information provided may be useful in a collaborative transportation process.

Category Questions to Consider
Long Range Planning
  • Can the recommended scenario be implemented in the timeframe of the LRTP?
  • How did various scenarios rank across the evaluation criteria?
  • What is the basis for selecting the preferred scenario over the other plan scenarios?
  • Does the preferred scenario meet fiscal constraint?
Programming
  • Is the project list from the preferred scenario documented to inform project selection and prioritization?
Corridor Planning
  • Does the preferred scenario impact any active or planned corridor studies?
Environmental Review
  • Does the preferred scenario impact any projects currently in environmental review?
  • Are direct or cumulative impacts to identified priority areas for conservation/restoration/mitigation anticipated in the preferred scenario?
  • Is the documentation for eliminated scenarios and strategies sufficient for NEPA?
Bicycles and Pedestrians
  • Will the preferred scenario make a positive contribution to the creation of connected pedestrian and bicycle networks?
  • To what extent have bicycles and pedestrians been considered in the selection of the preferred scenario?
  • What are the positive and negative impacts of the preferred scenario on bicycles and pedestrians?
Capital Improvement
  • What is the preferred scenario from a Capital Improvement perspective?
  • Is the adopted preferred scenario consistent with Capital Improvement plans for local jurisdictions?
  • How will the preferred plan scenario be communicated to the local jurisdictions?
Economic Development
  • What are the potential economic impacts of the preferred scenario? What are the potential opportunities?
  • Are there any unavoidable negative impacts on specific populations and/or businesses? Have mitigation strategies been identified?
Freight
  • Does the preferred scenario support the stated interests of engaged freight stakeholders?
  • Is the preferred scenario consistent with existing freight plans?
  • How will freight considerations that influenced the decision or the tradeoffs between freight considerations and other interests be communicated?
Greenhouse Gas Emissions
  • How does the preferred scenario compare to any GHG-reduction targets?
  • What are the GHG impacts of various scenarios? What are the likely cumulative impacts? Can the impacts be mitigated?
Health in Transportation
  • How are tradeoffs between health and other priorities balanced across scenarios?
  • How has the input received from community and health stakeholders in reaching the decision been considered?
  • Is the preferred scenario compatible with existing health plans and policies in the region?
  • How will the reasoning be communicated to health stakeholders?
  • How can relationships with health and community stakeholders be maintained to ensure their ongoing support and involvement while moving toward implementing the plan?
Human Environment and Communities
  • Do decision makers understand the impacts of individual scenarios on the community and on disadvantaged populations?
  • Is there a preferred scenario relative to human environment interests? If so, how does that compare to the adopted scenario?
  • How will the benefits and potential impacts of the LRTP be communicated to community stakeholders?
  • Are there any impacts to specific populations or community resources that need to be specifically addressed?
Land Use
  • What are the anticipated direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts of scenario on area land use?
  • Does the preferred scenario meet smart growth goals and/or encourage smart growth development patterns?
Linking Planning and Operations
  • Have operations strategies been considered in the selection of the preferred scenario?
  • Will reliability and system performance be improved?
Natural Environment and Implementing Eco Logical
  • What is the preferred scenario from an ecological perspective?
Performance Measures
  • How can performance measures inform the selection of a preferred scenario?
  • What are the priority performance characteristics based on the selected targets?
Planning and Environment Linkages
  • Is information available from an active PEL study to compare with the project concepts? If so, is there any inconsistency that will impact the preferred scenario?
  • Have the project concepts in the preferred scenario been documented to inform programming, corridor planning, and environmental review, as appropriate?
  • Do any of the preferred scenario project concepts need more detailed study before programming? If so, is a PEL corridor planning study appropriate?
  • Is the documentation for eliminated strategies and scenarios sufficient for corridor planning and environmental review?
Public Private Partnerships
  • Is there likely to be public and political support or opposition for identified P3 projects?
  • What is the fiscal situation with and without P3? How do these compare?
  • What risks might there be to the public and private sector from adopting a scenario with potential P3 projects?
Public Transportation
  • Will the preferred scenario make a positive contribution to the creation of connected public transportation?
  • Is the documentation for eliminated scenarios and strategies sufficient for New Starts?
  • To what extent has public transportation been considered in the selection of the preferred scenario? What are the positive and negative impacts of the preferred scenario on public transportation?
Safety
  • Is this the preferred scenario from a safety perspective?
Stakeholder Collaboration
  • Have preparations been made to respond to stakeholder input received prior to selecting the preferred scenario?
  • How well does the preferred scenario meet stakeholder needs and preferences?
Transportation Conformity
  • This Key Decision is not associated with the Application.
Visioning and Transportation
  • Is the proposed preferred scenario supportive of adopted future(s)?
  • If not, what changes to the scenario may be necessary prior to adoption?

Data

The following list of data may be needed to support the Key Decision. Practitioners collect this information for decision makers to consider. Although Public Transportation is not represented by a PlanWorks Application, the information provided may be useful in a collaborative transportation process.

Category Data to Consider
Long Range Planning
  • Data to support scenario analysis
Programming
  • Project list from the preferred scenario
Corridor Planning
  • Data for specific corridor studies
Environmental Review
  • Data to inform active projects
Bicycles and Pedestrians
  • Quantitative and qualitative data highlighting the extent to which the preferred scenario will improve conditions for those traveling on foot and by bike
Capital Improvement
  • Analysis to select the preferred scenario
Economic Development
  • Economic impacts and recommended mitigation
Freight
  • Documentation of how freight considerations influenced decisions
Greenhouse Gas Emissions
  • Costs associated with individual scenarios with respect to GHG strategies
  • Level of GHG reduction for each scenario, compared to baseline and target
Health in Transportation
  • Communications plan
  • Plan for ongoing maintenance of stakeholder relationships
Human Environment and Communities
  • Assessment of scenario impacts to communities and/or populations
  • Documentation of internal decision making
  • Approach for communicating the decision outcome to human environment and community stakeholders
Land Use
  • Data from any integrated land use and transportation modeling
  • Data from any sketch planning to consider smart growth policies or strategies
Linking Planning and Operations
  • Quantitative and qualitative data highlighting the extent to which the preferred scenario will improve conditions
  • TSMO strategies
Natural Environment and Implementing Eco Logical
  • Results of the analysis to select the preferred scenario
  • Data regarding direct and cumulative effects and mitigation needs of the preferred scenario
Performance Measures
  • System performance associated with each scenario
Planning and Environment Linkages
  • Individual project concepts
Public Private Partnerships
  • Public and political support or opposition for P3 projects
  • Fiscal situation with and without P3
  • Risks associated with P3 inclusion
Public Transportation
  • Quantitative and qualitative data highlighting the extent to which the preferred scenario will improve conditions for those traveling on public transportation
Safety
  • Data/analyses for evaluating scenarios
Stakeholder Collaboration
  • Stakeholder support or challenge for each scenario
Transportation Conformity
  • This Key Decision is not associated with the Application.
Visioning and Transportation
  • Analysis associated with each scenario
  • Short and long-term outcomes for each scenario
  • Identified conflicts or changes needed

Examples

In - depth case studies of successful practices in collaborative decision making were used to develop the Decision Guide.Links in this table point to a specific paragraph or section of a case study that supports a Key Decision. It is not necessary to read through an entire case study to find the example; however, full versions are available in the Library.

PlanWorks Case Study Examples:
I-5 Beltline Interchange Plan - Using Community Values as Performance Measures lrp-8

Other Examples:
Charlottesville-Albemarle MPO’s 2040 Long Range Transportation Plan, Chapter 7 http://campo.tjpdc.org/process-documents/lrtp-document/