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66 uating pavement performance. Despite the importance of distress measurements, current methods are subjective and time consuming. However, significant progress has been made in electronic instrumentation and in computer technology. For example, independent efforts to fully au- tomate crack detection, employing recent advances in image processing and pattern recognition, are underway. Nevertheless, ongoing efforts, even if successful, will not resolve all the problems in fully automating distress mea- surements. Additional work that builds on these efforts is needed. An increasing number of transportation agencies have embraced the concept of data- and image-acquisition sys- tems that record, among other things, the condition of the pavement surface in a video format. Therefore, it is anticipated that an automated means of processing video images to quantify surface distress will be widely accepted by transportation agencies. In general, the availability of a robust image processing and pavement-distress-recog- nition system would represent a significant contribution in the field of pavement management at both network and project levels. The objective of this project is to develop a system for processing video images to identify, quantify, and classify pavement distress in terms of types, severity, and extent. Accomplishment of the objective will require the follow- ing tasks: Task 1. Assess the potential capabilities of using video images to identify and quantify pavement surface distress for use in network condition assessments and for project level decisions. Prepare a preliminary system design for processing these video images. Specify the image reso- lution and other characteristics required for processing, and describe the equipment and conditions that would be needed for obtaining such images. Task 2. Obtain a sample of video images suitable for the determination of pavement distress by type, severity, and extent through automated image processing. Video images obtained shall represent distress types across a full-lane width. Task 3. Develop the video image processing system described in Task 1 with consideration for user options on hardware and video parameters specific to an individ- ual transportation agency. Task 4. Validate system output by comparison with visual interpretations of video images. Task 5. Modify the system based on the Task 4 vali- dations. Task 6. Arrange to demonstrate the video image proc- essing system to the NCHRP. Task 7. Deliver the video image processing system soft- ware, program source codes, and user's and program manuals to the NCHRP. Task 8. Prepare a final report on the total research effort. AREA 2: ECONOMICS Project 2-1 FY '63 and FY '64 Criteria for Highway Benefit Analysis Research Agency: University of Washington Principal Invest.: Prof. R. G. Hennes Effective Date: June 1, 1963 Completion Date: November 30, 1967 Funds: $101,948 This project provided estimates of the relevance of dif- ferent types of benefit and cost data to decisions in high- way location. Basic guides for priorities, guidelines for data collection, and basic information related to taxation were developed. An interdisciplinary approach to the problem was un- dertaken by the Departments of Civil Engineering, Po- litical Science, Business Administration, Economics, and Sociology of the University of Washington. The final report was not published in the NCHRP report series; however, microfiche of the report may be purchased (see final page of this section for ordering in- formation). Project 2-2 FY '63 Guidelines for the Determination of Commu- nity Consequences Research Agency: University of Washington Principal Invest.: Prof. Edgar M. Horwood Elective Date: July 1, 1963 Completion Date: August 31, 1964 Funds: $48,873 This project was concerned with identifying and pre- dicting community consequences arising from highway improvements. It was designed to seek out both favorable and unfavorable consequences and involved evaluation of existing economic impact studies, developing of guidelines for highway agencies to follow in these studies, and the outlining of urgent aspects of this problem needing de- tailed researched. The Urban Planning and Civil Engineering Depart- ments combined their talents and analyzed more than 600 research reports and other writings. The final report pre- sented an analysis of bypasses, circumferentials, and radial freeway impact effects. The utility of these studies, as well as expressed gaps in knowledge, was also discussed. This research has been completed, and the results have been published as: NCHRP Report 18, "Community Con- sequences of Highway Improvement."

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67 Project 2-3 FY '63 and FY '64 Analysis of Motor Vehicle Accident Data as Related to Highway Classes and Design Elements Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Elective Date: Completion Date: Funds: Cornell Aeronautical Laboratory Dr. J. K. Kihlberg June 1, 1963 August31,1966 $155,972 The objective of the study was to determine the rela- tionship of motor vehicle accidents to highway design elements. The study consisted of two phases: Phase 1 was a one-year study to detains accident and severity rates for various highway types; Phase 2 was a two-year study to extend these rates to various geometric elements of the highway. The research has been completed, and the project report has been published as: NCHRP Report 47, "Accident Rates as Related to Design Elements of Rural Highways." Project 2-4 FY '63 and FY '64 The Value of Highway Travel Time, Comfort, Convenience, and Uniform Driving Speed Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Effective Date: Completion Date: Funds: Texas A&M University Research Foundation Dr. W. G. Adkins June 1, 1963 August 31, 1966 $77,100 Various methods that have been proposed to evaluate time savings accruing to highway vehicles are reviewed in this report, and two selected models were used to analyze Interstate Commerce Commission data on com- mercial highway carriage for the year 1962. Values of time saving in dollars per hour were derived for nine geographical regions as designated by the Interstate Com- merce Commission for cargo vehicles and for intercity buses. Detailed methodology of the cost-savings model is presented so that other researchers can make similar es- timates under known local conditions. Also, an updating technique has been developed, and the 1962 costs were projected to 1965 utilizing equipment costs and driver wags and benefit indexes to develop multipliers. The as- sumptions of this technique and the limitations of apply- ing the derived results are discussed. The final report for this project has been published as: NCHRP Report 33, "Values of Time Savings of Com- mercial Vehicles." Project 2-5 FY '63 and FY '64 Running Cost of Motor Vehicles as Affected by Highway Design and Traffic Research Agency: The Catholic University of America Principal Invest: Dr. Paul J. Claffey Elective Date: June 1, 1963 June 1, 1965 Completion Date: Aug. 31, 1964 Dec. 31, 1966 Funds: $49,998 $51,265 In this project, the motor vehicle running costs were developed for use in evaluating user costs related to pro- posed highway improvements and traffic regulations. These costs were determined from actual vehicle field tests as well as from the available literature. A research report presenting the results of the first year's work was received and has been published as: NCHRP Report 13, "Running Cost of Motor Vehicles as Affected by Highway Design." This report relates the fuel consumption cost of a typ- ical passenger vehicle to various roadway geometries and operating characteristics as measured by more than 4,000 test runs in the field. It describes the development of a precise fuel meter used to collect the data. Brief studies are reported on oil consumption, maintenance, tire wear, and depreciation costs as they are affected by highway and traffic conditions. During the second phase of research, fuel and time consumption data were collected for a second passenger vehicle, a transit bus, a tractor semitrailer, a single-unit truck, and a diesel truck. A special fuel meter for mea- suring the fuel consumption of diesel trucks was devel- oped. The results of this project have been combined with the results of Projects 2-5A and 2-7. The findings of the combined research effort have been published as: NCHRP Report 111, "Running Costs of Motor Vehicles as Af- fected by Road Design and Traffic." Project 2-5A FY '65 and FY '67 Running Cost of Motor Vehicles as Affected by Highway Design and Traffic Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Effective Date. Completion Date: Funds: Paul J. Claffey and Associates Dr. Paul J. Claffey July 1, 1967 Aug. 11, 1969 Dec. 31, 1968 Aug. 10, 1970 $35,000 $30,665 The original 2-5 project was continued to obtain more detailed data on running costs of motor vehicles in order to eliminate certain gaps that exist in the information available on this subject. The results of the earlier work on Project 2-5 and Project 2-7 have been combined with the additional results of this phase of the project into a single comprehensive final report. The erects that vari

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68 ations in gradient, road surface, speed-change frequency, and traffic volumes have on the running costs of passenger cars, pickup trucks, two-axle six-tire trucks, and tractor- trailer combinations are included in the final report, and information is provided on the operating expenditures of fuel and oil consumption, maintenance and depreciation, tire wear, and accidents. Condensed graphs of the findings of the fuel consumption and tire wear studies are pre- sented. Each is designed to provide fuel and tire wear cost for various combinations of road design elements and speed-change conditions for a given running speed. Also included are families of curves of fuel consumption and tire wear for the eleven test vehicles used in the study and data on the maintenance costs of passenger cars and trucks relative to travel distance, together with average oil consumption rates for operation on dust-free pave- ments in free-flowing traffic, on dustry roads, in free- flowing tragic, and on high-type pavements under restric- tive traffic conditions. Several appendices detail a com- parative analysis of fuel consumption of diesel and gasoline trucks, determination of the excess fuel consumed by passenger car passing maneuvers, an investigation of devices for the measurement of tire wear, development of equipment for the measurement of vehicle fuel con- sumption, and an annotated bibliography on highway motor vehicle operating costs. The final report for this project has been combined with those from Projects 2-5 and 2-7 and published as: NCHRP Report 111, "Running Costs of Motor Vehicles as Affected by Road Design and Tragic." Project 2-6 FY '63 and FY '64 Warranted Levels of Improvement for Local Rural Roads Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Elective Date: Completion Date: Funds: Stanford University Prof. C. H. Oglesby June 1, 1963 September 30, 1966 $40,000 This project was concerned with the setting of economic standards for the construction and maintenance of local rural roads. The research has been completed, and the results have been published as: NCHRP Report 63,"Eco- nomics of Design Standards for Low-Volume Rural Roads." Project 2-7 FY '64 and FY '65 Road User Costs in Urban Areas Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Elective Date: Completion Date: Funds: The purpose of this research was to provide data on road-user costs as classified by arterial type, operating speed, traffic composition, and delay factors. Basic tables applicable for planning and for selecting arterial street and highway systems from the various alternates in urban areas were developed. The final report contains information on fuel and time consumption rates of a passenger vehicle, two trucks, and a bus operating on various types of urban facilities under various levels of service. Some study was devoted to de- termining motor vehicle accident costs and oil and main- tenance costs which can be attributed to urban driving conditions. Tire wear data were collected for freeway and urban arterial comparisons. The results presented in the project report have been combined with the results of Projects 2-5 and 2-5A and published as: NCHRP Report 111, "Running Costs of . Motor Vehicles as Affected by Road Design and Traffic." Project 2-8 FY ,64 Estimation and Evaluation of Diverted and Generated (Induced) Traffic Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Elective Date: Completion Date: Funds: Northwestern University Prof. W. L. Garrison May 1, 1964 August 31, 1966 $40,000 Traffic volumes on new or improved highway facilities are found to increase more than can be attributed to normal growth of existing traffic. This extraordinary traffic increase is composed of two components, diverted and generated. In making analyses of highway improve- ment consequences, such diverted and generated traffic must be taken into account. At the present time, sufficient information is not available concerning characteristics of this type of traffic. The final report was not published in the NCHRP report series; however, microfiche of the report may be purchased (see final page of this section for ordering in- formation). Project 2-9 FY ,66 Effect of Highway Landscape Development on Nearby Property Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Elective Date: Completion Date: Funds: The Catholic University of America Dr. Paul J. Clayey February 1, 1964 May 31, 1966 $99,376 The Franklin Institute Joel N. Bloom November 8, 1965 January 31, 1968 $149,103 The intent of this research was to study how highway landscape development affects nearby property on a na- tionwide basis. This study determines the comparative effects of different basic types of landscape treatments in regard to property values, land use compatibility, and

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general acceptability. Factors relative to the problem in- clude geometric design as well as plantings, fencing, slope blending, and screening applications. The report will assist highway engineers and landscape architects in developing designs that will reduce highway noise levels to an acceptable range for adjacent residents. The research results have been published as: NCHRP Report 75, "Effect of Highway Landscape Development on Nearby Property." Project 2-10 FY '67 Future Needs for Oversize-Overweight Permit Operation on State Highways Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Effective Date: Completion Date: Funds: Roy Jorgensen and Associates Ralph D. Johnson November 1, 1966 April 30, 1968 $99,655 The purpose of this study was to evaluate the extent of current and future activities of oversize-overweight vehicles in relation to the highway transport situation. The research results have been published as: NCHRP Report 80, "Oversize-Overweight Permit Operation on State Highways." Project 2-11 FY '67 Summary and Evaluation of Economic Con- sequences of Highway improvements Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Effective Date: Completion Date: Funds: Highway Research Board Robley Winfrey January 1, 1967 July 31, 1970 $110,000 This project reviewed the reports submitted on eco- nomics in NCHRP, as well as information from other sources, and prepared the results in a form that may be used directly by engineers, economists, and others who wish to make highway economic studies. The research was conducted in four phases: (a) to pre- sent the background and principles of engineering econ- omy and economic analysis; (b) to present the findings of Projects 2-1 to 2-9, together with supplementary data from other sources, in an organized form for use in benefit- cost studies and other economic analyses; (c) to identify gaps in the information available and needed research to fill these gaps; and (d) to make an introductory study of probable future trends in the technology of economic analysis. The project report has been published as: NCHRP Report 122, "Summary and Evaluation of Economic Con- sequences of Highway Improvements." Project 2-12 FY '73 and FY '77 Highway User Economic Analysis Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Effective Date: Completion Date: Funds: Stanford Research Institute D. G. Andersen Apr. 1, 1974 Oct. 11, 1976 Oct. 31, 1975 May 31, 1977 $90,074 $9,995 The 1960 AASHO "Informational Report by Com- mittee on Planning and Design Policies on Road User Benefit Analyses for Highway Improvements" (updated revision of the original 1952 report) was written to provide a simple, easy-to-use method for carrying out economic analyses on highway alternatives by those having only basic knowledge of principles of economics. The objective of this research was to employ, to the best possible extent, current empirical data on highway user benefits and costs (such as from NCHRP Report 122 and other research) to provide a revised and updated version of the 1960 AASHO publication. The revised version includes an analysis methodology based on sound economic theory and is suitable for immediate, direct application. The methodology provides a means of evaluating public transit operating on public highways. This evaluation allows comparisons between transit operation and additional highway improvements. Further, procedures are included that provide the user with a means for periodic updating of the numerical factors and cost coefficients through utilization of commonly available economic data. A1- though it was recognized that environmental and social factors are significant items of input to the decision-mak- ing process, this research was limited to road user benefits and costs only. The final report, "A Manual on User Benefit Analysis of Highway and Bus Transit Improvements," has been published by AASHTO and can be obtained by writing to: American Association of State Highway and Trans- portation Officials, 444 North Capitol St., N.W., Suite 225, Washington, D.C. 20001 Project 2-13 FY ,83 Multilane Design Alternatives for improving Suburban Highways Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Elective Date: Completion Date: Funds: Midwest Research Institute Douglas W. Harwood July 18, 1983 March 31, 1985 $100,000 The objective of this research was to investigate and compare the safety, operational, and cost characteristics of selected multilane design alternatives for use in sub- urban areas. Operational characteristics include capacity, level of service, and accessibility. Alternatives to be in- vestigated include:

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70 . Three-lane with two-way left-turn lane. . Four-lane divided with one-way left-turn lanes in the median. . Four-lane undivided. . Five-lane undivided, including a center two-way left- turn lane. Each alternative was investigated under both a no-shoul- der condition and a full shoulder condition. Of particular concern were highways with traffic volumes over 7,000 vehicles per day and speeds between 35 and 50 mph (i.e., these conditions usually indicate that a 2-lane highway can no longer handle the traffic demand). A set of critical factors was identified that should be considered in making meaningful comparisons of the var- ious highway types. The following factors were consid- ered: median presence; shoulder width; accessibility to roadside developments; right-of-way requirements; ca- pacity; operational characteristics; and accident experi- ence. Accident data were obtained from California and Michigan and operational data were developed by the University of Nebraska using a computer simulation model. The relative merits of each highway design alternative were described in terms of operations, safety, and costs. Primary advantages, disadvantages, and limitations of each alternative were delineated. An example was devel- oped to illustrate how all of the identified factors would typically be considered by state or local authorities in the selection of a particular design. This example demon- strates the general approach, rather than a rigid meth- odology, to the selection process. The final report has been published as NCHRP Report 282. Project 2-14 FY '86 Public/Private Partnerships for Financing Highway improvements Research Agency: Kimley-Horn and Associates Principal Invest.: Laurence J. Meisner Elective Date: January 1, 1986 Completion Date: March 31, 1988 Funds: $125,000 The objective of this research was to provide guidance to state and local highway officials and private developers on existing and potential public/private partnership mechanisms, including present state and local statutes and ordinances related to private (e.g., developer) partic- ipation in financing highway improvements. The project has identified constraints on private participation in fi- nancing highway and road improvements, identifies po- tential opportunities and appropriate processes to implement public/private partnerships, and documents examples of state and local legislation enabling and en- couraging such partnerships. Guidelines have been de veloped for application at the state and local levels to facilitate this form of highway financing. The guidelines consist of a well-defined, step-by-step process which can be used at the State or local level to implement legislation to facilitate public and private fi- nancing partnerships. Specific examples of legislation in- clude recommended language for both statutes and ordinances for three of the most promising mechanisms, namely, special assessment districts, impact fees, and de- velopment agreements. A benefit-cost analysis technique was also developed for analyzing benefits to the public and private sectors of a potential funding arrangement. All research has been completed. NCHRP Research Results Digest 161, "Public and Private Partnerships for Financing Highway Improvements," has been published as a separate report covering only the legal issues. The final report has been published as NCHRP Report 307, "Public and Private Partnerships for Financing Highway Improvements." Project 2-15 FY '86 Identifying Measuring, and Evaluating the Benefits of Safety Roadside Rest Areas Research Agency: KLD Associates, Inc. Principal Invest.: Gerhart F. King Effective Date: January 13, 1986 Completion Date: September 30, 1989 Funds: $236,560 There is no known reliable and generally accepted method for measuring and evaluating the benefits of safety roadside rest areas. Most states have not yet completed the originally planned rest area system and now also face the necessity of major reconstruction of many older rest areas. Rest areas are very popular with the traveling public. Recent sharp increases have occurred in both construction and operation costs of rest areas, and competition for funding with other highway construction and mainte- nance programs has become difficult. Therefore, the need is extremely great for a reliable and accepted method of comparing rest area benefits with costs. A study is nec- essary to identify (1) how state highway agencies benefit from rest areas, (2) users and nonusers and how they benefit, and (3) the value of these benefits and related costs. A new profile of rest area users and their needs is necessary to properly evaluate existing facilities, and to plan and design new and reconstructed rest areas. The makeup of rest area users today has changed since rest areas were first built. Driving habits are different, motorists' attitudes toward mobility have changed, and there is an increasingly more mobile public, e.g., senior citizens, handicapped, and young families. Furthermore,

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71 traffic speeds and conditions have changed, along with vehicle types and sizes. While rest area benefits are viewed in a variety of ways, safety is typically near the top of the list. Investigation of experience in managing and operating highway systems with rest areas, including those with commercial facilities, and those systems without rest areas may provide useful data on driver fatigue, behavior, and accident patterns. The objective of this research is to develop a method for measuring and evaluating the benefits of roadside rest areas to result in more cost-effective designs and opera- tions. This research will address both the benefits and disbenefits associated with rest area facilities. The research will include the following tasks: Task 1 Review relevant domestic and foreign pub- lications and research findings. Task 2 Determine present practice and experience among the states and other appropriate sources in cost and benefit analyses relative to the planning and man- agement of roadside rest area programs. Task 3 Develop a profile of rest area users and their needs. The user profile should reflect the current mix of rest area users as well as forecasted trend changes over the anticipated 20-year service life of the facilities. Task 4 On the basis of an evaluation of the methods identified in Tasks 1 and 2 and the profile developed in Task 3, develop a preliminary cost/benefit analysis method for general application. This method will identify: . How state highway agencies benefit from rest areas. . How users benefit and who they are. . How nonusers benefit and who they are. . The value of these benefits and related costs. The method should be comprehensive and cover (1) rest area user needs, (2) functional attributes of rest areas (e.g., safety, comfort, inflation, security, maintain- ability, aesthetics), (3) resultant economic benefits or dis- benefits to the user, community, tourism, local business, state economy, etc., and (4) the capital and operating costs. The method should consider the type of users (e.g., trucking, recreational), type of highway, location (rural/ urban), vehicle mix, cooperation with adjoining states, speed limit, and it should be applicable to both new proj- ects and rehabilitation of existing rest areas. Who pays and who benefits should be specifically addressed, as well as innovative funding approaches including private fund- ing, joint use, etc. Safety is considered to be a primary factor in the de- cision to provide rest areas. This research will identify and quantify, to the extent possible, the safety elements provided by rest areas. Practical operating problems such as seasonal fluctuations in demand, personnel turnover, and the like, are also of interest. Although quantification of benefits and disbenefits is desired, many factors are too subjective to develop precise quantitative values. Therefore, the method should provide some means, such as a subjective ranking scheme, to address these factors. For example, the priority or em- phasis a particular state or area places on the desire to promote tourism could be factored into the analysis. In relating benefits to costs, the method should include a level-of-service concept. In effect, the benefits of a basic rest area (only parking and restrooms) should be assessed in relation to its cost, as well as incremental additions (e.g., picnic areas, information facilities, sanitary dumping facilities). Task 5-Prepare an interim report that discusses the preliminary method developed in Task 4. Task 6 Design a process to conduct a rest area cost/ benefit analysis incorporating the method developed in Task 4, and apply this process to an actual case study. The process should (1) reflect the public's perception of what a rest area should be, (2) have wide application, (3) lead to more cost-effective programs and facility de- signs, and (4) be clear, easily applied, reasonable, and acceptable to highway agencies and the public. Task 7 Prepare a final research report as well as a handbook to assist managers in applying rest area cost/ benefit analysis. The handbook will include the case study to illustrate how the process is applied. Tasks 1 through 5 have been completed. The project panel has reviewed a draft "Rest Area Analysis Meth- odology" (RAAM). The RAAM is now being applied to a case study on Interstate 81 in Virginia under Task 6. All work is expected to be complete by mid-1989. Project 2-16 FY '87 and FY '89 Relationships Between Vehicle Configura- tions and Highway Design Research Agency: Principal Invest.: EJ~ective Date: Completion Date: Funds: Transportation Research Board Robert E. Skinner, Jr., Joseph R. Morris March 2, 1987 June 30, 1990 $900,000 Data from the AASHO Road Test and other field ex- perience indicate that most pavement distress and damage are associated with heavy axle loads from highway ve- hicles. Specifically, the Road Test data show that pave- ment damage increases exponentially as axle loads get heavier. Analysis of the Road Test Data also indicates that increases in pavement thickness permit exponential increases in equivalent axle loads for comparable pave- ment perfol~ance. Mr. F. C. Turner, retired FHWA Administrator, has suggested that use of longer trucks with more axles and lower axle loads could result in reduced damage to pavements and more efficient use of transportation funds. Considerable interest has developed in investigating Mr. Turner's suggestion.

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72 This is a very complex issue involving technical, eco- nomic, social, and other factors. No detailed systematic evaluation has been made of the influence of vehicle con- figurations (e.g., axle loads, axle spacing, tire pressures, and spring components) and highway design (e.g., pave- ment thickness, bridges and geometries) on the efficiency of the highway transportation system. The overall objective of this project is to develop rec- ommendations for coordination of heavy vehicle config- urations and pavement, bridge, and highway geometric design to produce the most practical and efficient trans- portation of goods and services over the highway system. The initial phase of the research (1) collected, reviewed, and evaluated available information pertaining to the problem; (2) conducted a pilot analytical study involving the more significant factors and sample data; and (3) assessed the feasibility and practicality of further devel- opment of an optimum solution. The end product of the initial research phase consisted of recommendations for further research intended to produce (1) short-term im- provements in interactions of heavy vehicles with the existing highway system having potential for early im- plementations, and (2) long-term optimization of the heavy vehicle-highway design interaction intended to pro- duce improved efficiency of the highway transportation system. The initial phase of this research has been completed as NCHRP Project 20-7, Task 27, which concluded that the "Turner" proposal does appear feasible and that it may yield important benefits to all road users, but that further examination is necessary in the areas of carrier acceptance, alternative vehicle configurations, potential safety impacts, the costs of added bridge stress, and pave- ment wear effects under varying assumptions concerning which roads the new trucks would be allowed to use. The second phase of the project, now well underway, will consist of five objectives to: (1) estimate, based on actual experience under similar circumstances, how car- riers would use the new truck configurations; (2) com- prehensively evaluate effects on bridges that could result from the new truck sizes; (3) analyze the safety of the new trucks compared with the vehicles they would re- place; (4) refine the pavement impact estimates of the feasibility study; and (5) provide guidance to the states and the federal government on the costs and benefits of alternative truck size and weight regulations. The results of the study's second phase should be useful guidance to public agencies on vehicle regulations that will allow more efficient transportation. Research on all major objectives is proceeding on sched- ule. The study committee met on September 7, 1988 to review progress and provide direction to the researchers. Drafts of some chapters of the final report are already under development. A complete draft report is scheduled for August 1989. Project 2-17 FY tso Transportation and Economic Development Research Agency: Principal Invest.: Elective Date: Completion Date: Funds: In developmental stages (24 months) $250,000 The role of an effective transportation system in build- ing and maintaining a vital economy has been recognized as a critical issue and is currently the subject of renewed interest. It is generally recognized that there is a need for better understanding of the various relationships between transportation decisions (e.g., capital investments, regu- latory actions, and taxing and pricing policies) and eco- nomic development. These relationships can be important in terms of both the net effect of the transportation system on the national economy and the impact on local and regional economies. At the national level, a 1988 AASHTO working draft, "The Bottom Line," states, "Transportation has always been a major driver of eco- nomic development and productivity. In the contempo- rary economy (service oriented, internationally oriented) it is less clear in what ways transportation can support the national economy. New travel patterns and new eco- nomic demands are being made and the transportation system must be prepared to respond. In the service econ- omy transportation's role is different rather than de- creased. There may well be fewer ton-miles per capita, or per dollar of GNP, in the future economy, but there will be ton-miles of very high value goods, with rigid delivery schedules and rapid travel time requirements. The demands for high quality services with assured re- liability will be great. The mobility of our citizens and foreign visitors will be a crucial future economic resource. The economic power of tourism, and the importance of rapid access to all points of the country by business trav- elers, are just beginning to be appreciated. Recognition of the new roles of transport, and particularly surface transport, are only slowly permeating into public policy. The link between transport investment and succeeding economic development and productivity has not yet been generally recognized in policy formation. The objective of this research, at the national level, will be to gain insight into the relationship between transportation and the na- tion's economic vitality and competitiveness. At the State and local level it is important for decision makers to have reliable estimates of the economic health and productivity benefits of potential transportation investments or man- agement actions at the local and regional levels. The objective of this portion of the research is to produce a synthesis of current practice and an evaluation of methods used by planners at the state level in carrying out re- sponsibilities such as the following: prioritizing highway improvement projects based on economic considerations,