The National Association of Development Organizations (NADO) Research Foundation prepared a report on the implementation of intelligent transportation systems (ITS) technologies in rural areas for the U.S. Department of Transportation ITS Joint Program Office in early 2020. The research combined a review of literature on rural and small metropolitan ITS with interviews of transportation professionals. A series of case studies highlights the work of State, regional, local, and nonprofit agencies who are applying ITS in the areas of travel information; management and operations; bicycle, pedestrian, and traffic safety; public transit; and vehicle connectivity.
The target audience includes: regional development organizations (RDOs); regional transportation planning organizations (RTPOs); public transportation agencies; States, metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs), city and county transportation professionals; and other agencies that support bicycle and pedestrian planning, public works, and safety.
Objectives of this webinar are that participants will gain an understanding about:
- The role of local and regional agencies, including regional planning organizations, in ITS planning and projects.
- ITS applications currently used in rural and small metropolitan settings related to highway, bicycle/pedestrian, transit, traveler information, and traffic safety.
- How ITS applications have made a difference beyond metropolitan area boundaries and lessons learned from the transportation professionals who are implementing the projects.
Michelle Noch, Professional Capacity Building (PCB) Program Manager, Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Joint Program Office (JPO), United States Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT)
Michelle Noch’s career with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) began in 2005 as a Community Planner providing federal oversight of transportation planning in Southern California. After five years working with State, regional, local, and tribal planning partners, Michelle joined the FHWA Office of Planning’s Transportation Planning Capacity Building team, working with partners nationwide to develop and deliver training and technical assistance.
Since 2016, Ms. Noch has served as the Program Manager for the Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) Professional Capacity Building Program within the U.S. Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT) ITS Joint Program Office (JPO). She oversees a multimodal program coordinating ITS training and technical assistance efforts across the U.S. DOT. The ITS JPO is responsible for a multimodal and disciplined approach to accelerating the deployment of connected and automated vehicles.
National Association of Development Organizations Research Foundation
In 2019 and 2020, the NADO Research Foundation conducted research on how regional development organizations and their State and local partners are involved in ITS planning or projects in rural and small urban areas. Through a review of existing research and stakeholder interviews, NADO identified current ITS projects, needs, and challenges related to rural ITS implementation, interagency partnerships to install ITS technology, and resources for launching ITS applications.
Rachel Beyerle, Program Manager, National Association of Development Organizations (NADO) Research Foundation
Ms. Beyerle is a Program Manager with experience in transportation planning, technical assistance program management, and communications. At the NADO Research Foundation, Rachel conducts research on innovative regional and rural transportation funding, public outreach, policy, planning, and technology. Prior to joining NADO, Rachel worked for Easterseals and the National Aging and Disability Transportation Center, and has worked for the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials; the City of Janesville, Wisconsin; and the Kentuckiana Regional Planning and Development Agency. Rachel holds degrees from Notre Dame of Maryland University, the University of Kentucky, and the University of Louisville.
Mo-Kan Regional Council, St. Joseph, Missouri
Mo-Kan and fellow regional development organizations (RDOs) in Missouri are partnering to share ITS assets including dynamic message signs, a speed radar, traffic counter, and mobile safety lab to improve traffic operations and special events information. The Missouri RDO coalition plans to use ITS to address speeding, protect bicyclists and pedestrians, and promote economic activity through improved walkability and access to businesses and services.
Rebecca Thacker, Community Development Planner, Mo-Kan Regional Council
Ms. Thacker has been a Community Development Planner at Mo-Kan Regional Council for the past five years, where she is involved in transportation planning, grant writing and administration, hazard mitigation planning, and other types of community development. Rebecca holds a bachelor’s degree from Northern Arizona University and is nearing completion of her master’s degree in community and economic development from Pennsylvania State University. She has also completed a graduate certificate program in renewable energies.
South East Area Transit (SEAT), Zanesville, Ohio
Participating in Ohio Department of Transportation’s Transit Tech Ohio (T2O) initiative—which expanded cellular and wireless coverage in the State and set minimum standards for transportation system hardware—has provided South East Area Transit (SEAT), a three-county public transportation system serving Muskingum, Guernsey, and Noble County in Ohio, the opportunity to improve its demand response service software and update scheduling, dispatch, communications, data validation, and reporting. As a result of the ITS application, SEAT experienced exponential growth in the number of rider trips, a decrease in costs, and the ability to accommodate same-day trip requests.
Howard Stewart, Jr., Transit Director, South East Area Transit (SEAT)
Mr. Stewart has more than eight years of experience as the Transit Director and Board Secretary/Treasurer of SEAT. Howard is responsible for ensuring safe, efficient, affordable public transportation to meet the citizens’ needs who desire to use SEAT services. Before joining SEAT, Howard worked as the Executive Director of a small nonprofit that provided daily programs and community needs to adults and youth in Zanesville, Ohio. Howard holds a degree from Findlay College; he has 30 years of experience collaborating with local government, businesses, and human service agencies to better the community.
Andrea Lang Dupler, Operations Director, South East Area Transit (SEAT)
With great passion and dedication for innovative operations, Ms. Lang Dupler began her transportation career serving as an Operations Supervisor in Onslow County, North Carolina. During her seven years there, she assisted in family readiness for Camp Lejeune before returning to her hometown of Zanesville, Ohio. Andrea then spent three years in logistics for Coca-Cola before returning to her professional passion, public transportation. As the Operations Director of SEAT, Andrea assists and creates innovative paths for public transportation in southeastern Ohio and systems all over the United States. Andrea enjoys working with community groups geared to bringing access and transportation to citizens.