Goals & Objectives

The Executive Committee of the Transportation Research Board of the National Academies has outlined the most critical transportation issues facing the nation in this first decade of the new century.  These issues have been highlighted to focus attention on the most significant policy decisions facing the nation and on the areas most in need of innovation.  Many of these issues are clearly within the purview of the Congestion Pricing Committee. Those with the most direct connection to the committee’s work are:

Congestion

Increasingly congested facilities across all modes

Equity

Geographic distribution of benefits and potential burdens on the disadvantaged

Infrastructure

Enormous aging capital stock to maintain

Energy & Environment

Extraordinary energy and environmental challenges

Finance

Inadequate revenues

Institutions

20th century institutions facing 21st century challenges

The issues specified by the TRB Executive Committee are closely related to those identified by the TRB’s Policy & Organizational Group (POG), under which the Congestion Pricing Committee falls.  The POG has identified a number of critical cross-cutting issues that will require collaboration and action from an array of TRB committees in order to make meaningful advances in addressing these needs adequately.  The Congestion Pricing Committee has reviewed these and is prepared to contribute to the following:

Congestion

Addressing  congestion through multimodal pricing approaches.

Finance

Examining road pricing strategies as potential future supplements or replacements for the motor fuel tax.

Sustainability

Exploring how congestion pricing and pricing-based applications can contribute to a sustainable transportation system.

To fulfill its mission, the Committee has established five major goals:

Promote Research and Best Practices

Promote research to evaluate impacts and identify best practices from transportation projects that incorporate pricing in project planning, programming, development and implementation, as well as in post-implementation operations and evaluation.

Activities

  • Conduct peer reviews of papers submitted to TRB about transportation pricing applications.
  • Identify, develop, and disseminate research needs statements (RNS) for use by practitioners, researchers, and others.  Maintain these statements on the TRB RNS web site.
  • Monitor the activities of industry associations (e.g., AASHTO, APTA, IBTTA, MBUFA, AMPO, etc.) and content on their respective web sites, recommending additions or updates, and seeking opportunities for collaboration.
  • Provide input and assistance to USDOT in defining the future of congestion pricing and in addressing needs at the facility, corridor and network level, as well as establishing a vision for local, state and federal roles.
Disseminate Knowledge on Best Practices and Related Research

Disseminate knowledge on best practices and related research findings to transportation professionals and key decision makers in public agencies and private organizations in order to increase knowledge about the best practices and impacts of transportation pricing.

Activities

  • Sponsor or co-sponsor at least one poster session and a minimum of two panel or presentation sessions at each annual TRB meeting, at least one of which emphasizes practical applications of pricing and economic theory.
  • Sponsor or co-sponsor 1-2 workshops per year coordinated with the TRB Annual Meeting and Mid-Year meeting.
  • Disseminate information on upcoming events with transportation pricing content to the mailing list of Committee contacts and friends.
  • Coordinate with and assist USDOT in the dissemination of best practices reviews on the deployment and evaluation of transportation pricing projects.
  • Seek opportunities to collaborate with other agencies and organizations in conducting webcasts/webinars devoted to the theory, practical applications and new concepts in transportation pricing. Partner with the AHB35 to sponsor a series of webinars. Identify hot topics, agendas and expert panels for webinars.
  • Survey members and friends of the Committee concerning information dissemination
  • Revisit a new TR News pricing and managed lanes edition.
  • Lead or collaborate in the organization of an international conference focusing on emerging concepts, new research, lessons learned from successful and unsuccessful pricing initiatives, and evaluations of current pricing programs.
Address the Pricing Issues Critical to Different Stakeholder and User Groups

Identify critical issues related to transportation pricing concepts and applications for key stakeholders and transportation user groups, such as highway operators and users, the freight and goods movement industries, transit operators and users, environmental interests, infrastructure financiers and investors, etc.  Advance common research and collaborative activities to establish fact-based decisions about the role of pricing in transportation projects and programs.

Activities

  • Seek sponsorship of joint sessions and research statements to identify critical issues and advance pricing research relevant to stakeholders and users.
  • Develop and advance a series of synthesis research proposals to collect and organize relevant research regarding pricing interests for critical stakeholders.
  • Conduct a stakeholder survey on research needs and issues as they pertain to pricing, managed lanes, and mileage based user fees
  • Participate and develop a congestion pricing white paper that describes emerging issues in pricing integration in tolling, regional, and managed lane applications
Advance Pricing Concepts Related to All Modes and System-wide Applications

Advance the exploration of issues related to new concepts of transportation pricing of non-highway modes (i.e., transit, parking, marine terminal access, aviation groundside, aviation air space, etc.), as well as aspects of integrated transportation system impacts of multi-modal transportation pricing.

Activities

  • In collaboration with other TRB committees, organize workshops and sessions on new concepts of transportation pricing of non-highway modes and integrated transportation systems in conjunction with TRB’s Annual and Mid-Year Meetings.
  • Review and update responsibilities for liaison with non-highway TRB committees and other groups.
  • Identify liaison members to other TRB committees having related interests.
  • Identify liaison members to groups in other professional organizations, worldwide, which have related interests.
  • Assess the emergence of mileage-based transportation charging concepts for congestion pricing and the activities of the Committee.
  • Encourage research to identify legal, regulatory, and procedural impediments to innovative pricing on non-highway modes, including revenue-generating strategies, and develop recommendations for future action.
  • Develop a white paper on the role of congestion pricing in mileage-based revenue generation.
Improve Committee Effectiveness

Continually improve the Committee’s operating effectiveness and its ability to engender collaboration and adapt to changing conditions.  Establish linkages and collaborate with other TRB committees on topics related to transportation pricing.

Activities

  • Undertake a Committee self-evaluation each year to review the previous year’s achievements in light of the strategic plan’s mission and goals.
  • Perform minor updates to the strategic plan annually (update the list of supporting activities).
  • Ensure that Committee membership reflects a balanced composition with regard to geography, gender, race, ethnicity, and organizational affiliation.
  • Update Committee and Subcommittee membership to maintain balanced representation of both established and emerging applications of transportation pricing, across modes, different types of pricing applications, and different points of view.
  • Update “Friends of the Committee” list as a source of new committee, subcommittee and task group membership.
  • Review and update responsibilities for liaison with related TRB committees and other groups.
  • Enhance and maintain the Congestion Pricing Committee web site by posting the Committee Strategic Plan, Committee organization details, presentations and papers from Committee activities and sessions, and a schedule of pertinent events. Include an on-line method for interested people to register as committee “friends” and to comment on proposed activities.
  • Use the Committee web site as an outreach mechanism, by highlighting the Committee purpose and scope and inviting collaboration.