This handbook is intended to introduce transportation practitioners to a method of integrating ecological interests into transportation planning to address natural resource conservation and restoration priorities at a regional scale, and to establish a more reliable and efficient delivery program for projects with partner agencies.

Issues covered in this Handbook include:

  • engaging resource and regulatory agencies as planning partners;
  • adopting an ecological framework for planning;
  • prioritizing resources for conservation and restoration;
  • developing a future transportation program in partnership with agencies and stakeholders to minimize impacts and direct mitigation efforts;
  • establishing programmatic agreements for project review, permitting, and mitigation crediting; and
  • maintaining the framework and the partnership

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Handbook Resources

American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO). 2008. Practitioner’s Handbook 10: Using the Transportation Planning Process to Support the NEPA Process. Center for Environmental Excellence by AASHTO, Washington, DC.
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Brown, Janice W. 2006. Eco-Logical: An Ecosystem Approach to Developing Infrastructure Projects. FHWA-HEP-06-011. Federal Highway Administration, Washington, D.C.

Drechsler, M. and F. Watzold. 2009. “Applying tradable permits to biodiversity conservation: Effects of space-dependent conservation benefits and cost heterogeneity on habitat allocation.” Ecological Economics. 68(4): 1083-1092.
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Department of the Army, Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 2008. “Compensatory Mitigation for Losses of Aquatic Resources.” Federal Register, Vol. 73, No. 70, Thursday, April 10, 2008.

Executive Order 13274. “Environmental Stewardship and Transportation Infrastructure Project Reviews.” September 18, 2002. Federal Register, Vol. 67, No. 184. September 23, 2002.

Executive Order 13604. “Improving Performance of Federal Permitting and Review of Infrastructure Projects.” March 22, 2012. Federal Register, Vol. 77, No. 60. March 28, 2012.

Federal Highway Administration. 2011. FHWA Scenario Planning Guidebook. Research and Innovative Technology Administration, U.S. Department of Transportation, Washington, DC.

Federal Highway Administration and Federal Transit Administration. 2005. Linking the Transportation Planning and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Processes. Washington, DC.

Institute for Natural Resources, NatureServe, Parametrix, Inc., and CH2M HILL. 2012. An Ecological Approach to Integrating Conservation and Highway Planning, Volume 2. SHRP2 Report S2-C06-RW-2. Transportation Research Board, Washington, D.C.

Murcia, C. 1995. “Edge effects in fragmented forests: implications for conservation.” Trends in Ecology and Evolution. 10(2): 58-62.

Schwartz, M.W. 1999. “Choosing the appropriate scale of reserves for conservation.” Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics. 30:83-108.

Crist, S. Howie, M. Venner, J. Kagan, and L. Gaines. 2014. Manager’s Guide to the Integrated Ecological Framework. SHRP2 Report S2-C06-RW-4. Transportation Research Board, Washington, D.C.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 2008. Handbook for Developing Watershed Plans to Restore and Protect Our Waters. EPA 841-B-08-002, March 2008.