TRAFFIC CONGESTION: ACTIVITIES TO REDUCE TRAVEL DEMAND AND AIR POLLUTION ARE NOT WIDELY IMPLEMENTED

The General Accounting Office (GAO) investigated the strengths and weaknesses of federal transportation system management (TSM) planning efforts by conducting a nationwide survey of 119 metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs), using a stratified random sample of metropolitan statistical areas. The response rate was 100%. Additionally, GAO conducted site visits in Minneapolis, San Francisco, and Tampa and interviewed key decisionmakers involved in TSM implementation and local air quality planning. Briefly, GAO found the following: Of all MPOs, 96% planned at least some TSM activities for their regions, with 49% emphasizing supply management activities, but only 17% emphasizing demand management activities. Ridesharing programs received greater planning emphasis than any other demand management activity from MPOs in areas of 125,000 or more. Planning alone failed to ensure the implementation of demand management activities. Almost every type of demand management activity received higher emphasis in planning than in implementation except in areas with a population less than 125,000. Of those who indicated that demand management activities were not used enough in their regions (79% of all MPOs), 71% listed the lack of available funding and 64% cited the low priority given to congestion reduction by local officials because of unwillingness to discourage single-occupancy ridership. In the survey responses and site interviews, GAO found evidence of only limited integration of air quality and local transportation planning processes, even in many areas with poor air quality. Only 26% of all MPOs indicated that their short-term plans included at least some demand management or related activities for clean air purposes. According to survey respondents, a different agency had lead responsibility for almost every stage in the joint planning and implementation process.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Report to Congressional Requesters.
  • Corporate Authors:

    U.S. General Accounting Office

    441 G Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20548
  • Publication Date: 1992-11

Language

  • English

Media Info

  • Features: Appendices; Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 88 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00625562
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: GAO/PEMD-93-2
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Dec 21 1993 12:00AM