The eight-step planning process, described
below, is adapted from the National Park Service’s
Alternative Transportation Program Planning Checklist. While
the Checklist was developed for the NPS ATP program, it is
relevant to any potential transportation-related project
in a Federal land.
In addition, another information resource
is a presentation by FHWA on Planning, which can be accessed
Please remember that while this Toolkit
is designed to primarily help with the first three steps
of the planning process, the information provided in the
Toolkit can be used in all eight steps.
transportation problem (use the Decision Support System
or Challenges/Solutions Matrix)
||Define the transportation problem(s)
that relate to current conditions or specific goals.
A well-defined problem helps determine partnership opportunities
and data collection needs. Defining the problem also
helps to determine what data will eventually need to
be collected and analyzed. Review internal and external
resources, and communicate with stakeholders.
alternatives (Use the Fact Sheets)
|By using the Decision Support System
or Challenges/Solutions Matrix, the Fact Sheets will
indicate potential solutions. Also consider the option
of doing nothing. Review the information on the Fact
Sheets, and talk to those who have implemented the various
solutions presented. Determine if alternatives have significant
impacts requiring an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)
or Environmental Assessment (EA).
||Using the Fact Sheets and other resources,
evaluate the alternatives based on costs, benefits, feasibility,
environmental impacts, and consistency with short- and
long-range plans. Develop funding strategies and financial
plans. Public outreach may be necessary at this point,
and if an EIS required, this step results in a draft
||Choose alternative that offers the
best combination of benefits relative to costs, minimal
environmental impacts, technical feasibility, and financial
viability. Remember that the best alternatives may include
partnering with a Department of Transportation, gateway
communities, or other organizations.
scope, cost estimates, and operating plans
||Refine the design and operating plan
to a level of detail that allows accurate cost estimates.
Finalize items such as the precise location and design
of any facilities and the specifications of any vehicles
and buildings. Describe the funding concept, supported
by detailed long-range financial planning. If significant
environmental impacts can be expected from the project,
a final EIS (FEIS) may required, including a detailed
evaluation of the preferred alternative and public outreach.
all capital and operating funding
||After all detailed scope, alignment,
operating, and design issues are complete, secure capital
and operating funding for the project from the sources
identified in Step 5, which may include local partners,
user fees, and other appropriate sources.
design, prepare bid documents, and award contracts
||After all funding is obtained, complete
final design activities, divide the project into contracts,
receive bids and award construction, procurement, operations,
and maintenance contracts as needed for the project.
operations, and maintenance
||Once the project is built (or implemented),
the operations and maintenance phase begins. Close out
contracts and submit final reports as required. Monitor
ongoing performance of the system and report data as
Source: National Park Service's Alternative Transportation Program