Small Municipalities Task Force

Available Resources

Roadway Departure Safety: A Manual for Local Rural Road Owners
US Federal Highway Administration Report FHWA-SA-11-09
Rural areas face a number of highway safety challenges due to the nature of their facilities. Roadway departure crashes are frequently severe and account for the majority of fatalities in rural areas. This document provides information on effectively identifying roadway departure safety issues in local areas, choosing the countermeasures that address them, and evaluating the benefits of those treatments. It is geared toward local road managers and other practitioners with responsibility for operating and maintaining their roads. This document offers information on the procedures and processes to improve the safety of local rural roadways and to reduce the potential for future roadway departure crashes.

Improving Travel Options in Small and Rural Communities
Techbrief:  Simulator Evaluation of Low-Cost Safety Improvements on Rural Two-Lane Undivided Roads: Nighttime Delineation for Curves and Traffic Calming for Small Towns  (US Federal Highway Administration - FHWA)
In this study, a driving simulator experiment was conducted to evaluate two sets of alternative low-cost safety improvements for rural areas based on Technical Advisory Committee recommendations from the 2007 Annual Meeting. The first set of improvements was directed toward enhancing the visibility of curves on rural two-lane undivided roads at night. It focused on achieving advanced detection and speed reduction in such curves. The second set of improvements was directed toward slowing traffic on rural two-lane undivided roads in small towns during the day by focusing on traffic calming within the towns.

Guidebook for Freight Policy, Planning, and Programming in Small- and Medium-Sized Metropolitan Areas
This guidebook provides the necessary resources to undertake freight transportation planning activities in small- and medium-sized metropolitan areas. This guidebook should be especially useful to small- and medium-sized Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs), as well as their state and federal partners, as they work to effectively integrate freight into local and regional transportation systems planning, priority programming, and project development planning activities.

Signal Timing on a Shoestring
This report examines various cost-effective techniques that can be used to generate good signal timing plans that can be employed when there are insufficient financial resources to generate the plans using conventional techniques. The report identifies a general, eight-step process that leads to new signal plans: 1) Identify System Intersections; 2) Collect and Organize Existing Data; 3) Conduct a Site Survey; 4) Obtain Turning Movement Data; 5) Calculate Local Timing Parameters; 6) Identify Signal Groupings; 7) Calculate Coordination Parameters; and 8) Install and Evaluate New Plans.

Handbook of Traffic Engineering Practices for Small Cities: Second Edition 2005
The purpose of this handbook is to assist local officials in the application of Traffic Engineering practices within their community. The traffic problems encountered by local officials are not unique within their jurisdiction. Common problems will generally have common solutions.  The solutions to these problems can, therefore, be identified from examples generated from the experience of others. It is recognized that local officials receive questions relative to traffic concerns on a daily basis. It is also recognized that most communities in Kansas will not have constant access to professional traffic engineering expertise. This handbook is written in a question and answer format, answering key questions considered relevant to small city personnel. This handbook will provide answers to those questions. It will provide methods for developing the answers to other questions. It will also provide direction to other sources of information.

Current Practices and Innovations Database (TAC)
This database webpage has been developed to provide either the maintenance or construction engineer or manager with a collection of documents representing the knowledge, expertise and experience of leading Canadian professionals. The maintenance documents in this database provide information on roads, equipment and facilities. Specific categories include specifications, contracting procedures, operational aspects, management systems, performance measures and benchmarking. The construction documents deal with all aspects of construction for both roads and structures. Categories include contract types, quality assurance and construction zone safety.

GIS-based Integrated Rural and Small Urban Transit Asset Management System 
(Midwest Transportation Consortium)
This study developed a methodology for improving the practice of making transit asset investment decisions at state departments of transportation and local transit agencies.

National Guide to Sustainable Municipal Infrastructure (FCM) 

English ~ French

  • Best Practices for Utility-Based Data
  • Alternative Funding Mechanisms
  • Developing Levels of Service
  • Planning and Defining Municipal Infrastructure Needs
  • Timely Preventative Maintenance for Municipal Roads

National Handbook of Traffic Control Practices for Low Volume Rural Roads and Small Cities - VOLUME I: Low-Volume Roads

National Handbook of Traffic Control Practices for Low Volume Rural Roads and Small Cities - VOLUME II: Small Cities

Roadway Safety Tools for Local Agencies (TRB)
This synthesis focuses on identifying safety tools that can be used by agencies in formulating safety programs. It recognizes the wide variation in the parameters of operation and responsibilities of local agencies along with substantial resource limitations in terms of financial support and personnel. Also, it acknowledges that expertise in transportation safety analysis varies widely among local agencies.

Small Communities Benefits: Innovative Traffic Management Practices in Small Communities (FHWA) 
This report features five model small communities, which were selected in order to achieve a balance of varying population sizes, traffic management solution types, and geographical locations. Highlights include: an emergency vehicle pre-emption and visual warning system, a modern roundabout to improve a five-way signalized intersection, a seasonal shuttle bus service, a computerized traffic signal coordination system and a non-profit car sharing organization to reduce the parking demand.

Toolkit for Rural Community Coordinated Transportation Services 
TRB’s Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP) Report 101: Toolkit for Rural Community Coordinated Transportation Services examines strategies and practices used to coordinate rural transportation services, and identifies model processes used for local coordination efforts in rural communities. A stand-alone executive summary of the report provides information, instructions, and lessons learned from rural communities that have implemented coordinated transportation services.