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About the Center

2019-2020 Work Plan

Information Exchange & Marketing Plan

The Center will develop and execute an Information Exchange and Marketing Plan to provide a framework for expanding outreach and distribution of Center products and services to key transportation stakeholders. The framework will include leveraging existing networks through current partners like the Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations and the Transportation Research Board.  Furthermore, the plan will outline methods for using social media platforms and other web-based tools to increase engagement and outreach with other environment and transportation stakeholders. Link to Information Exchange & Marketing Plan.

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Center Web Site and Environmental Research

The Center will maintain the existing website (environment.transportation.org) which is the central location for DOT staff, resource agencies, and other transportation partners and practitioners to access the Center's resources, products and programs. The website will be regularly updated with news and information regarding environmental legislation, webinars, trainings, innovations and case studies. Additionally, publications, recordings and other information produced through this work plan will be posted to the website. The Technical Working Group will help identify relevant news sources, best practices and other types of content to publish on the website.

The Center will also continue to maintain the Transportation and Environmental Research Ideas (TERI) database - a central storehouse for tracking and sharing new transportation and environmental research ideas. TERI provides a timely, organized, and comprehensive list of research ideas to policy makers and researchers as they make choices in forums such as TRB's National Cooperative Highway Research Program.

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Speaker's Bureau and Transportation Research Board Collaboration

Under this task, the Center for Environmental Excellence will support the participation of state DOT practitioners in national conferences, and summits, such as the Transportation Research Board annual meeting and committee meetings. The Center will compile a list of potential speakers comprised of state DOT practitioners, members of the Center Technical Working Group including State DOT representatives, MPOs, resource agencies, and other selected experts that are available to make presentations during national conferences and other venues. This task will enable the Center to develop customizable presentations for practitioners to deliver during AASHTO Standing Committees, Transportation Research Board sessions and meetings, and other relevant conferences, summits, and meetings to be identified in collaboration with FHWA.

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Active Transportation

Under this task, and working with the AASHTO Council on Active Transportation and the AASHTO Committee on Safety, the Center will plan a joint peer exchange/workshop to discuss safety issues related to active transportation and to learn more about state DOT decision-making processes on active transportation projects. Content and programming for the peer exchange/workshop will be planned in coordination with FHWA experts, the AASHTO Council on Active Transportation and the AASHTO Committee on Safety. Following the peer exchange/workshop, the Center will develop resources (webinars, case studies, etc.) to support state DOT practitioners, including State Bicycle and Pedestrian coordinators, and other interested stakeholders and partners in the growing field of active transportation. The Center will aid in capacity building by using a variety of media, including case studies on emerging and critical topics, and webinars that introduce case studies with other written deliverables. This task will also increase the presence of active transportation and related resources on the Center's website. The AASHTO Council on Active Transportation Steering Committee will help in topic selection and determination of appropriate delivery methods (case studies, webinars, and other written reports) for the various topics.

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EJ Virtual Peer Exchange

Leveraging the work conducted by the Environmental Justice Community of Practice (CoP) under past Center for Environmental Excellence Work Plans, this task will enable the Center to conduct a virtual peer exchange with State DOTs, MPOs, and other partners. The Center will collaborate with the Environmental Justice Community of Practice Steering Committee and FHWA to develop content for this task's virtual peer exchange which may include follow-up items from the Environmental Justice Roadmap (2016) and other related topics (the EJ state of practice, EJ implementation successes, challenges, lessons learned, and needs assessment for future training and research, etc.). Based on the outcomes of the Virtual Peer Exchange the Center will develop a summary report.

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NEPA Implementation Cost and Timeframe

Under this task, the Center will survey State DOTs to determine how long NEPA documents take from beginning to final decision for CEs. The study will include the costs of the NEPA process including related environmental review processes. The study will focus on all States including those currently participating in FHWA's NEPA Assignment Program. Survey results will be compiled in a final report that will be published to the Center website. The Center will also conduct a webinar to accompany the release of the summary report.

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Support for Second International Extreme Weather and Natural Disaster Resilience Conference

Working with FHWA and TRB, the Center will provide organizational and logistical support to the Second International Extreme Weather and Natural Disaster Resilience conference to be held November 2019 in Washington, DC. The conference is a follow up to the 2015 First International Conference and the Resilience Innovations Summit and Exchange in 2018. AASHTO and State DOT involvement and participation are critical to the success of the conference. This task will provide resources to ensure AASHTO and state DOT involvement.

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Public Involvement and Inclusive Engagement Domestic Scan

Modeled after the existing AASHTO Domestic Scan Program, this task will provide an opportunity for 8-12 AASHTO members to participate in an information sharing and exchange related to public involvement and inclusive engagement. The participants will visit approximately three sites (geographically dispersed) to learn more about public involvement and inclusive engagement practices in other state transportation agencies. Agendas for the site visits will be developed by the CEE Task Team in cooperation with the 8-12 AASHTO member participants. A summary document will be developed covering scan results and lessons learned.

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Context Sensitive Solutions/Design Workshop

Under this task, the Center will organize and hold a half-day workshop for practitioners to discuss current practices incorporating CSS/D in their decision-making process, and to raise awareness about context and design flexibility. The workshop would provide an opportunity for participants to discuss challenges associated with CSS/D implementation; including gaps in training, technical assistance, and capacity building needs. Based on the discussions during the workshop, the Center will produce a report highlighting best practices and approaches. This task will enable the Center to provide travel support for participants from the Committee on Environment & Sustainability to attend the workshop which will occur during a joint meeting of the AASHTO Council on Active Transportation and the AASHTO Committee on Design (CoD) to be held in Reno, Nevada from July 21-26, 2019.

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AASHTO (American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials)
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