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5 CHAPTER one Introduction Background The systematic control of the location, spacing, design, and operation of driveways, median openings, interchanges, and street connections to a roadway. It also involves Streets and highways represent major public investments and roadway design applications, such as median treatments valuable resources that provide for mobility, accessibility, and auxiliary lanes, and the appropriate spacing of traffic signals. The purpose of access management is to provide and economic vitality. Access to and from abutting properties vehicular access to land development in a manner that must be managed to ensure that streets and highways operate preserves the safety and efficiency of the transportation safely and efficiently. Property owners have a right of rea- system. (p. 3) sonable access to the general system of streets and highways. Roadway users have the right to freedom of movement, safety, Williams and Levinson (2) noted that access manage- and efficient expenditure of public funds. The need to balance ment has grown dramatically in the last several decades. It these competing rights is especially acute in cases in which has evolved steadily from its origins when it was applied significant changes in land development have occurred or are on the boulevards of the late 19th century to the compre- envisioned to occur. The safe and efficient operation of the hensive systemwide programs that define contemporary roadway system calls for effectively managing the access to practice. Throughout this evolution, states and local gov- adjacent developments. Access management provides a sys- ernments have gained more insight into the need for and tematic way of balancing the trade-offs between land access the methods of coordinating transportation management and through-traffic mobility functions that are implicit in the and land use. functional hierarchy of all roadways. Figure 1 illustrates a conceptual functional hierarchy of roadways, ranging from a The contemporary practice of access management freeway (no direct access and high mobility) to a cul-de-sac extends the concept of access design and location control to (highest level of access and no through-traffic mobility). all roadways--not just limited-access highways or freeways. Several NCHRP research studies, work by the TRB Access Management Committee, and publications by TRB, ITE, FHWA, and others have provided information and materials to state and local agencies on access management and access control programs. Synthesis Objective The objective of NCHRP Synthesis Project 40-11 is to gather and report on the state of the practice with respect to high- way access management in the United States at the state and local levels. The state of the practice is identified with respect to planning, highway design, development review and permitting, and other focus areas in which access man- agement typically is incorporated. This synthesis examines how agencies have acted on the various components of an access management program, what have been the barriers FIGURE 1 Conceptual roadway functional hierarchy. to action, and how new efforts might improve the imple- Source: Access Management Manual (1 ). mentation of access management strategies and treatments nationwide. The emphasis is placed on states, but counties, Roadway access management is defined in the 2003 TRB municipalities, and Metropolitan Planning Organizations Access Management Manual (1) as follows: (MPOs) also are considered.