Title

THE VENTURA FREEWAY ADVISORY COMMITTEE: PUBLIC PARTICIPATION IN TRANSPORTATION PLANNING

Authors

J O. Voss

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

1988

Subject Area

operations - traffic, infrastructure - vehicle, infrastructure - bus/tram priority, infrastructure - bus/tram priority, infrastructure - bus/tram lane, infrastructure - traffic signals, land use - planning, mode - bus

Keywords

Traveled way, Transportation planning, Traffic signal priority systems, Traffic signal preemption, Traffic lanes, Roadway, Public participation, Public involvement, Preemption (Traffic signals), Multiple occupancy vehicles, Local participation, High occupancy vehicles, Freeway operations, Feasibility analysis, Citizen participation, Carriageways, Bus priority, Advisory groups

Abstract

An innovative approach is reported which was used by the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) to gain approval for the construction of a carpool lane on the Ventura Freeway, one of the busiest freeways in the U.S. The third proposal for adding high occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes on the freeway was accepted by the public, because it was implied that if it was not ratified, the money allocated for the improvements would go instead to another priority project. In addition, the proposal created a public advisory group to discuss the proposal and make its recommendations to Caltrans. The main task of the committee, which represented the majority of the population affected by the project, was to evaluate the feasibility of an eastbound HOV lane on the freeway. The options available to the committee are noted, and the safety concerns of the project, the state agency opinions, and the determination of the final decsion on an open vote, are discussed. Although the advisory committee's decision was eventually overturned, the committee was successful in involving the public in the decision process. The committee will be used as a model for future advisory committees dealing with the problem of urban freeway congestion.