Last summer, a letter signed by 9 members of the US Senate was just one of thousands pieces of correspondence in response to proposed regulation concerning performance measures for the National Highway System (NHS).
“How we measure performance and outcomes directly affects the choice of investments that will be made. If we focus, as this proposed rule does, on keeping traffic moving at high speeds at all times of day on all types of roads and streets, then the result is easy to predict: States and MPOs will prioritize investments to increase average speeds for cars, at the expense of goals to provide safe, reliable, environmentally-sensitive, multi-modal transportation options for all users of the transportation system, despite those goals being stated in federal statute.”
The Senators expressed their concerns and suggestions in response to the notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) for the National Goals and Performance Measures (MAP-21); Assessing Performance of the National Highway System, Freight Movement on the Interstate System, and Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program. USDOT and FHWA were inundated with reponses from the American Heart Association, cycling coalitions, public transportation advocates, Safe Routes to Schools devotees, and many more.
“Tens of thousands of commenters, through campaigns from T4America (Transportation for America), the American Heart Association, and others, raised concerns about the vehicle-focused nature of the eight measures proposed in the NPRM,” FHWA wrote in their comments accompanying the new rule.”