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New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.
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New From TRB 2010: The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Timeframe of the Transportation Project Development Process - by up to 50%.

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So what’s going on with NEPA 50% faster initiative? Joe Shalkowski, Associate VP of Transportation Planning at PBS&J, attended the annual TRB meeting in January. Joe reported on what the TRB discussed …

So what’s going on with NEPA 50% faster initiative? Joe Shalkowski, Associate VP of Transportation Planning at PBS&J, attended the annual TRB meeting in January. Joe reported on what the TRB discussed to reduce the timeframe of the transportation project development process by 50% to the Austin subchapter of the Texas Association of Environmental Professionals.

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Transcript

  • 1.
    • New from TRB 2010:
    • The Emerging Federal Initiative to Reduce the Transportation Project Delivery Timeframe by up to 50%!
    • Presented by Joe Shalkowski
    • PBS&J
    • TAEP – Austin Chapter
    • April 14, 2010
  • 2. Preface
    • “The origins of this presentation stem from a series of talking points conveyed at the 2010 TRB Annual Meeting. And yes, the subject of ‘streamlining’ makes me cringe too”
    • Joe Shalkowski
  • 3. Purpose
    • Convey what was discussed regarding the Administration’s initiative to reduce the timeframe for transportation project delivery
    • Focus on the planning and NEPA aspects of project delivery
    • Explore the reasons for most project delays
    • Highlight opportunities for expediting the planning and NEPA process
  • 4. I Take NEPA Seriously!
  • 5. The Philosophy Behind the Initiative
    • Delays result in higher project costs
    • Higher costs lead to fewer dollars
    • Fewer dollars lead to fewer projects
    • Fewer projects lead to fewer jobs
    • Fewer jobs lead to economic decline
  • 6. The Initiative’s Objectives
    • Identify what are the embedded barriers to efficient project delivery and shatter them
    • Reverse the trend of increasing unnecessary projects delays – Time is money, every year of delay can mean millions of dollars in additional costs
  • 7. Questions to Think About Today
    • What are the embedded barriers to efficient NEPA project delivery in Texas and can they be shattered?
    • What is an “unnecessary project delay” and how can it be eliminated?
    • What can be done today to cut the timeframe and costs of doing NEPA?
  • 8. First Things First – Let’s Review
    • The Intent of NEPA
    • The NEPA Process
    • The Average Timeframe to Complete EISs and EAs
  • 9. NEPA Intent
    • The NEPA Umbrella is a federally-mandated public disclosure and integrated decision- making process:
    • But, there is more!
  • 10. NEPA Intent
    • It is our basic National Charter for the protection of the environment
    • It is to foster and promote the general welfare of present and future generations of Americans
    • It is to maintain conditions under which man and nature can exist in productive harmony
    • Read the actual NEPA Law for more information: 42 U.S.C. 4321 – 4347, as amended
  • 11. NEPA Intent
    • So, please remember that NEPA is much more than a process; it involves Stewardship: Federal actions should
      • Serve, and not just “use”
      • Enhance, and not just mitigate
      • Enrich, and not frustrate
  • 12. The Planning and NEPA Process Planning and Programming Design, ROW, Construction Federal Action (Decision) Mitigation Commitments Impact Analysis Development of Alternatives Affected Environment Purpose and Need Agency & Public Involvement ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓
  • 13.  
  • 14.  
  • 15. EA Timeframe
    • In 1999, FHWA estimated that it took an average of 1.5 years to complete an EA. A survey by AASHTO in 2000 estimated that EAs for projects that were not delayed took about 14 months (1.2 years), but when projects were delayed the EA took an average of 41 months (3.4 years).
    Source: (Dill, J; 2006 – TRB Paper 06-2300).
  • 16. What are the Principal Causes for NEPA Delays
    • ? ?
    • ? ?
  • 17. Source: (Dill, J; 2006 – TRB Paper 06-2300).
  • 18. Source: (Dill, J; 2006 – TRB Paper 06-2300).
  • 19. The Causes of Delay – Conclusions
    • The conditions that most often cause delay are generally out of the control of the federal and state lead agencies:
      • Low project priority
      • Lack of funding
      • Local controversy
      • Project complexity
  • 20. Making NEPA More Efficient and Effective
    • 1. Take advantage of the planning process as a catalyst for NEPA
    • 2. Initiate NEPA review only when the project is “ripe”
    • 3. Invest in focused scoping to determine the real issues and those irrelevant to the decision
  • 21. Making NEPA More Efficient and Effective
    • 4. Don’t avoid, but manage risk –
      • Legal defensibility at what ever the cost is not efficient nor effective
      • One size fits all project risk assessments don’t work; risk assess each project individually
    • 5. Establish a realistic schedule
  • 22. Making NEPA More Efficient and Effective
    • 6. Prepare decision focused documents
      • CEs, validate that an EIS is not needed
      • EAs, determine if the proposed action (build alternative) will result in a “significant impact” when compared to the No-Action Alternative
      • EISs, evaluate reasonable alternatives to disclose impacts and assess mitigation (manage the number of alternatives)
    • 7. Avoid encyclopedic disclosure for the sake of full but unnecessary levels of costly bullet proofing
  • 23. Making NEPA More Efficient and Effective
    • 8. Actively promote joint review opportunities
    • 9. Respect the Technical Support Data File and Administrative Record
      • Properly document, cite, reference, and file all information and data that supports the decision
      • Avoid speculation, non-cited opinions, and subjective statements that cannot be backed up
  • 24. Making NEPA More Efficient and Effective
    • 10. Quality, Innovation, Training
      • Technical studies and documentation
      • Reviews
      • Filing and record keeping
  • 25. Quality
    • Core competencies required to produce quality NEPA studies:
      • Astute NEPA leadership
      • Experienced interdisciplinary technical support
      • Collaborative agency coordination
      • Engaging public involvement
      • Refined documentation and record keeping
      • A solid foundation (Purpose & Need)
      • Synergy between planning, programming, and NEPA
  • 26. Innovation
    • Keep asking, “How will NEPA studies be conducted 10-20 years from now?”
      • Digital Based Environmental Resource Inventory and Impact Analyses
      • Next Generation Modeling Technology
      • Multimedia Project Development/Delivery Techniques (Turbo-CE/EA, Internet, Etc.)
      • Web Based Management is Here – What’s Next?
  • 27. Training
    • This ain’t No Party, this ain’t no Disco, this ain’t no Fooling Around!
      • NEPA is a legal process
      • It may involve attorneys, lawsuits, and very high stakes
      • It requires skilled, competent practitioners
      • Training and education are essential to making NEPA more efficient and effective
  • 28. Questions
    • ? ?
    • ? ?

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