[Federal Register Volume 75, Number 215 (Monday, November 8, 2010)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 68418-68429]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2010-27987]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Highway Administration

23 CFR Part 511

RIN 2125-AF19


Real-Time System Management Information Program

AGENCY: Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), DOT.

ACTION: Final rule; request for comments.

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SUMMARY: Section 1201 of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient 
Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU) requires the 
Secretary of Transportation (Secretary) to establish a Real-Time System 
Management Information Program that provides, in all States, the 
capability to monitor, in real-time, the traffic and travel conditions 
of the major highways of the United States and to share these data with 
State and local governments and with the traveling public. This rule 
establishes minimum parameters and requirements for States to make 
available and share traffic and travel conditions information via real-
time information programs.

DATES: This rule is effective December 23, 2010. Establishment of the 
real-time information program for traffic and travel conditions 
reporting along the Interstate system highways shall be completed no 
later than November 8, 2014. Establishment of the real-time information 
program for traffic and travel conditions reporting along the State-
designated metropolitan area routes of significance shall be completed 
no later than November 8, 2016. Comments must be received on or before 
December 23, 2010. Late-filed comments will be considered to the extent 
practicable.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Robert Rupert, FHWA Office of 
Operations, (202) 366-2194, or via e-mail at robert.rupert@dot.gov. For 
legal questions, please contact Ms. Lisa MacPhee, Attorney Advisor, 
FHWA Office of the Chief Counsel, (202) 366-1392, or via e-mail at 
lisa.macphee@dot.gov. Office hours for the FHWA are from 7:45 a.m. to 
4:15 p.m., e.t., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Electronic Access and Filing

    This document, the notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM), and all 
comments received may be viewed on line through the Federal eRulemaking 
portal at: http://www.regulations.gov. The Web site is available 24 
hours each day, 365 days each year. Please follow the instructions.
    An electronic copy of this document may also be downloaded by 
accessing the Office of the Federal Register's home page at http://www.archives.gov or the Government Printing Office's Web page at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/nara.
    Comments may be submitted electronically to the Federal eRulemaking 
portal at http://www.regulations.gov. All comments should include the 
docket number that appears in the heading of this document. All 
comments received will be available for examination and copying at the 
above address from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., e.t., Monday through Friday, 
except Federal holidays. Those desiring notification of receipt of 
comments must include a self-addressed, stamped postcard or you may 
print the acknowledgment page that appears after submitting comments 
electronically. Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all 
comments in any one of our dockets by the name of the individual 
submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf 
of an association, business, or labor union). You may review DOT's 
complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on 
April 11, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 70, Pages 19477-78) or you may visit 
http://DocketsInfo.dot.gov.

Background

History

    Under the heading of ``Congestion Relief,'' section 1201 of 
SAFETEA-LU (Pub. L. 109-59, 119 Stat. 1144, Aug. 10, 2005) requires the 
Secretary of Transportation to establish a Real-Time System Management 
Information Program to provide, in all States, the capability to 
monitor, in real-time, the traffic and travel conditions of the major 
highways of the United States and to share that information to improve 
the security of the surface transportation system, to address 
congestion problems, to support improved response to weather events and 
surface transportation incidents, and to facilitate national and 
regional highway traveler information. The purposes of the Real-Time 
System Management Information Program are to:
    (1) Establish, in all States, a system of basic real-time 
information for managing and operating the surface transportation 
system;
    (2) Identify longer range real-time highway and transit monitoring 
needs and develop plans and strategies for meeting such needs; and
    (3) Provide the capability and means to share that data with State 
and local governments and the traveling public.
    Section 1201(c)(1) of SAFETEA-LU states that as State and local 
governments develop or update regional intelligent transportation 
system (ITS) architectures, described in 23 CFR 940.9, such governments 
shall explicitly address real-time highway and transit information 
needs and the systems needed to meet such needs, including addressing 
coverage, monitoring systems, data fusion and archiving, and methods of 
exchanging or sharing highway and transit information. The FHWA 
envisions that States carrying out updates of regional ITS 
architectures would consider broadening the geographic coverage area 
for gathering

[[Page 68419]]

and reporting traffic and travel conditions.
    These regulations do not impose any requirement for a State to 
apply any particular technology, any particular technology-dependent 
application, or any particular business approach for establishing a 
real-time information program. States and other public agencies are 
instead encouraged to consider any salient technology, technology-
dependent application, and business approach options that yield 
information products consistent with the requirements set forth in this 
rule. States are encouraged to work with value added information 
providers to establish real-time information programs. Value added 
information providers presently and in the future will create 
information products for commercial use, for sale to a customer base, 
or for other commercial enterprise purposes. Based upon this rule, such 
products could be derived from information from public sector sources 
in addition to the private sector's own capabilities for creating 
information content.
    The extent of the final rule is solely the provision of real-time 
information. It does not require the dissemination of the information 
in any particular manner, just that the State make said information 
available. The final rule does not require or mandate a particular 
technology nor on a technology-dependant application. States 
establishing a real-time information program would be able to employ 
any solution chosen to make information available. States and public 
agencies can enter into collaborative agreements with the private 
sector for establishing the program and gathering data. States and 
public agencies could purchase value added information products from 
value added information providers. States and public agencies could 
apply combinations of these, and other approaches to establish a 
successful real-time information program.
    A Request for Comments was published on May 4, 2006, at 71 FR 
26399, that presented a proposed scope for a Real-Time System 
Management Information Program. Using responses to this request, an 
NPRM proposing the creation of a new part 511 of 23 CFR was published 
on January 14, 2009, at 74 FR 1993. The purpose was to propose the 
establishment of minimum parameters and requirements for States to make 
available traffic and travel conditions information via real-time 
information programs.
    A two-stage implementation was proposed in the NPRM that included 
the Interstate highway system as the first stage for coverage within 2 
years, followed by other routes of significance as identified by the 
States within 4 years. The real-time information elements include lane 
or road closures because of traffic incidents and work zones, road 
weather observations, and, in metropolitan areas with populations 
greater than one million, travel times. The timeframes proposed for the 
information were 20 minutes outside of applicable metropolitan areas 
and 10 minutes for information in the metropolitan areas (except for 
roadway weather observations that remained at 20 minutes). It was 
proposed that the information be 85 percent accurate and available 90 
percent of the time.

Summary Discussion of Comments Received in Response to the NPRM

    The following presents an overview of the comments received in 
response to the NPRM.

Profile of Commenters

    Comments were submitted by a representative cross-section of State 
and local agencies, business organizations, and individuals that will 
be affected by the Real-Time System Management Information Program 
established through this rule. The docket contained comments from 35 
parties, two of which were duplicates. The commenters included 16 State 
departments of transportation (DOT); one automobile manufacturer; 2 
State associations, the American Association of State Highway and 
Transportation Officials (AASHTO), and the Northwest Passage Pooled 
Fund Study; the Intelligent Transportation Society of America, a 
technical association; Texas Transportation Institute (TTI), a 
university research center; the Vehicle Traffic Information Coalition, 
a trade association; 3 traffic information providers; the 511 
Coalition, a public/private traffic information coalition; 2 traffic 
information related software and equipment providers; 2 metropolitan 
planning organizations; a public safety operations and communications 
agency; and 2 individuals.
    Overall, the commenters supported the goals of the proposed rule, 
namely collecting traffic information and making it available to other 
public and private entities. The comments from commercial companies 
tended to favor deployment to an even broader base than that specified 
in the proposed rule with the same or more aggressive schedule. 
Although several State DOTs commented that the data collection goals 
were already being met or were achievable in the proposed time frame, 
over two thirds of the DOTs indicated that the proposed schedule was 
too short, or that the deployment of the mandated capability would be 
too expensive. The AASHTO noted in its comments that AASHTO members 
believe the goals of the NPRM are good but would not be attainable for 
several of the members in the time frame proposed. The AASHTO also 
commented on the potential coordination challenges and conflicts among 
the existing federally-required processes related to regional ITS 
architectures and to transportation planning and the proposed real-time 
system management information program.
    The AASHTO commented that FHWA needs to consider employing a phased 
approach, establishing goals and targets for the program with much 
longer timelines. The AASHTO and the States also recommend that any 
Real-Time System Management Information Program be based on 
implementing the State and regional ITS architectures and be based on 
regionally determined customer needs. Finally, AASHTO and the States 
asked FHWA to recognize that the proposed Real-Time System Management 
Information Program will have significant fiscal impacts to the States 
for implementing the necessary ITS capabilities initially and for 
ongoing operating and maintenance of the systems over time.
    The FHWA has reviewed and analyzed the comments received and thanks 
the commenters for their insightful input. Based on other input from 
DOTs and on FHWA's observations of the various traffic and information 
systems that States and local agencies have deployed, the FHWA 
continues to find that many States have already accomplished much of 
the work necessary to establish their real-time information program and 
that the costs are containable within the funding eligibility 
categories identified by the rule. However, agencies almost unanimously 
responded that the 2-year time frame proposed in the NPRM to develop 
the information program was insufficient due to constraints imposed by 
their existing planning and budgeting cycles. Many agencies indicated 
that additional time was necessary to enable eligible funding 
categories to be programmed to develop their real-time management 
information program. Consequently, the FHWA reevaluated the 
consequences of extending the period of implementation. The FHWA 
concluded that a 4-year compliance date of the rule is an appropriate 
time frame for States to establish the real-time information program 
for traffic and travel conditions that encompass all

[[Page 68420]]

Interstate highways operated by the State. Further, FHWA found 
appropriate a 6-year effective date to establish the real-time 
information program along the State-designated metropolitan area routes 
of significance. The additional time provided by the rule is expected 
to afford States adequate time to establish their real-time information 
management program in concert with their other needs, priorities, and 
budgets.
    Another area of concern expressed by a majority of DOTs is the 
accuracy that will be required of the data they are to share and 
expectations about how the program will be monitored. The TTI commented 
that a number of implementation details are not specified in the 
proposed rule. The TTI cited examples of how State agencies will know 
if their data meet the quality requirements, what evaluation guidance 
will be used, and how often agencies are to evaluate accuracy or 
timeliness. Kansas DOT (KDOT) further elaborated by commenting that 
many of the elements that are proposed to be provided will be 
subjectively measured or difficult to measure accurately. KDOT 
recommended that FHWA provide more information regarding the 
flexibility that States will have to determine levels of accuracy 
States can set or are able to achieve. KDOT further commented that FHWA 
needs to provide more information regarding expectations of how States 
would monitor performance or measure accuracy of the information.
    The FHWA agrees philosophically that a highly detailed set of data 
quality statistics and an associated validation process are desirable. 
However, achievement of specific parameters and methodologies requires 
identifying in detail the intended usage for the data and the 
technology to be used for its acquisition. The FHWA believes that 
adopting this approach would place limitations on the use of the data 
that were not intended or desired, and in many instances would impose 
an unnecessary cost on agencies while attempting to comply with more 
detailed requirements. However, FHWA does acknowledge that, based on 
the comments received, additional clarification is needed for the 
effective implementation of the program. In response, and as suggested 
by a number of commenters, modifications have been incorporated into 
sec. 511.311(b) to better define the collaborative responsibilities and 
contributions of the State and the FHWA Division Office during the 
creation of the real-time information management program to include the 
identification of the processes to be used by the States in gauging and 
assuring the quality of the information to be made available by the 
real-time system management information program.
    Several commenters included discussions about the methods used to 
disseminate the information. The methods and technologies to 
disseminate or distribute the information available from the Real-Time 
System Management Information Program are not within the scope of the 
regulation. In fulfilling the requirements of sec. 1201 of SAFETEA-LU, 
this regulation establishes a base level of information for traffic and 
travel conditions for all States. To provide agencies maximum latitude 
in their use of the information and the use of the information by their 
partners, the rule does not specify requirements or details related to 
information distribution methods. States and other public agencies are 
instead encouraged to consider any salient technology, technology-
dependent application, and business approach options that yield 
information products consistent with the requirements set forth in this 
rule.
    Many DOTs expressed concern about the proposed rule's requirements 
to provide roadway weather information, with particular concern 
expressed about the 20 minute update requirement. The California DOT 
agreed that weather information is vital but noted that there are 
numerous providers currently in the business, and suggested that the 
requirements be diminished. The KDOT commented that it is relatively 
easy to report weather information through existing weather stations 
but it is more difficult to produce road information that is useful to 
the motorist, and that updating this information every 20 minutes is 
not feasible without large investments in unproven technology. After 
further review, the FHWA agrees that the proposed requirements for 
weather information exceed the proposed requirements for other travel 
conditions and are not as uniformly applicable for all States. To be 
consistent with information for other travel conditions under the Real-
Time System Management Information Program, sec. 511.309(a)(3) of the 
rule has been modified to indicate that the State's Real-Time System 
Management Information Program is required to provide confirmed weather 
related hazardous driving conditions and roadway- or lane-closure 
information, and that the information made available is to be updated 
within 20 minutes of notice of a changed condition.
    A number of agencies commented on the difficulty of providing 
travel time data on the non-Interstate roadways designated as routes of 
significance. The Michigan DOT (MDOT) remarks summarized these concerns 
in its comments, noting that the MDOT does not believe there is a 
current system or algorithm that can be implemented at a reasonable 
cost that can collect travel times on surface streets. The FHWA agrees 
with this comment. Accordingly, the definition for traffic and travel 
conditions in sec. 511.303 removes the extent and degree of congested 
conditions as one of the characteristics of traffic and travel 
conditions and the requirements are modified in sec. 511.309(a)(4) for 
the real-time system management system to make available travel time 
information in metropolitan areas only on Interstate and other limited-
access roadways that are designated as routes of significance.
    In the NPRM, the FHWA requested comments on the viability and 
practicality for including transit event information. With the 
exception of one individual and the Chicago Office of Emergency 
Management and Communications, the commenters did not encourage 
including transit information. AASHTO's response was, ``We recognize 
the value of reporting transit information along with roadway 
information through similar channels to the end user. However, there 
are significant challenges associated with achieving this goal. A real-
time system management information program requiring transit 
information would require agreements with transit agencies over which 
the state DOT has no control.'' NAVTEQ recommended that instead of 
including transit event information in this rule that a parallel 
outreach and rule-making process be established to develop the transit 
portion of the program. Based on this input the FHWA determined that 
including transit event information delivery from a real-time 
information program is not practical at this time.
    The FHWA requested comments on the viability and practicality for 
using varying roadway segment lengths for conveying travel time for a 
real-time information program. AASHTO, several DOTs, and INRIX 
indicated that requiring segment lengths as part of the rule will make 
it difficult for many agencies to comply. The Pennsylvania DOT pointed 
out that imposing maximum segment lengths potentially eliminates 
public-private partnerships from occurring. The AASHTO requested in its 
comments that States have flexibility to work with FHWA to develop 
provisions for traffic and travel time reporting that are specific to 
each State's individual situation. After evaluating the comments 
received regarding specifying roadway segment

[[Page 68421]]

lengths for conveying travel time in the rule, FHWA concurs with 
AASHTO's recommendation and has not added specifications for roadway 
segment lengths referenced in sec. 511.309(a)(4) in the regulation.
    In the NPRM discussion of Executive Order 12866, the FHWA requested 
comments on the economic analysis of the proposed regulations including 
appropriateness of using the Georgia Navigator study in the 
``Regulatory Cost Analysis of Proposed Rulemaking'' to estimate 
benefits. INRIX commented that the estimates using data from the 
Navigator study dramatically overstate costs associated with urban area 
traffic monitoring. INRIX contends that the data collection 
technologies Navigator uses are much more expensive than currently 
available data collection technologies. Since the choice of 
technologies is to be determined by the agencies, INRIX's comment 
indicates the analysis performed may be conservative in some cases. The 
KDOT concurred with AASHTO's comments agreeing with the benefit-cost 
analysis that shows a positive return on investment. However, AASHTO 
also identifies two concerns: The cost associated with trying to 
measure travel times on signalized arterial streets, and a request for 
the cost of variable message signs to be considered in the analysis. As 
discussed previously, the requirement to deliver travel time on 
arterial streets has been removed from the rule, which alleviates the 
first concern. Regarding the second concern, specific delivery methods 
or technologies are not within the scope of this regulation. FHWA 
determined that the cost of these signs is not relevant as the rule 
pertains only to making the real-time information available and does 
not include the delivery mechanism or the costs associated with the 
mechanism.
    The FHWA also requested comments regarding how DOTs anticipated 
they will comply with the proposed regulations, including technologies 
and cost. The ``Regulatory Cost Analysis of Proposed Rulemaking'' 
assumed a traditional device-based approach for estimating costs to 
ensure a conservative (high) implementation estimate as a basis. Other 
techniques for gathering traffic flow information, such as those 
offered by the private sector, could result in implementation costs 
that are 87 percent lower.\1\
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    \1\ The ``Regulatory Cost Analysis of Proposed Rulemaking'' 
assumed a cost of $76,789 per mile to instrument a freeway to gather 
information consistent with that proposed in this rulemaking. A 
project undertaken by the I-95 Corridor Coalition that procured 
real-time information from a private provider (INRIX) used a data 
acquisition cost model that provides traffic flow information 
consistent with the information proposed in this rulemaking for a 
cost of $9,535 per mile, amortized over 10 years. Information about 
the I-95 Coalition project is available at http://www.i95coalition.org.
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    The MDOT and Virginia DOT (VDOT) submitted cost estimates. The MDOT 
noted a number of activities that it believed needed to be completed to 
properly implement the Real-Time System Management Information Program 
as proposed. These activities included developing a real-time cell 
phone application to be used by field personnel for lane closures and 
openings, developing a central application to receive the field reports 
and transmit those reports to other systems and the public, developing 
Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) interfaces with every 911 call center and 
CAD implementation in the State of Michigan, and maintaining additional 
staff on a 24-hour basis, with at least one person needed to handle 
each of MDOT's seven regions and possibly more in the Detroit 
metropolitan area. MDOT estimated that the system will cost $55,000,000 
to $85,000,000 to develop. Of this, $28,000,000 to $56,000,000 is for 
deployment of an extensive roadway weather information system that 
likely is not required for a real-time information program.
    At the low end of the cost range, VDOT commented that for it to 
fully comply with aspects of the proposed rule, an expansion of 
existing data services and of CAD and transportation operations center 
integration efforts would be required. To meet the requirements for 
real-time traveler information, including travel times, VDOT noted that 
it would likely expand an existing data services contract to receive 
data for approximately 1,200 miles of Interstate, estimated to require 
a minimum investment of $1,000,000 per year. The VDOT further commented 
that it would need to integrate information from approximately 60 of 
the 127 local 911 centers in Virginia. The VDOT estimates that the 
approximate cost to integrate a 911 center with a transportation 
operations center is $125,000, for a total statewide capital cost of 
$7,500,000, plus increased costs for operations, maintenance and 
hosting services. The VDOT commented that FHWA should consider funding 
this effort with an annual commitment of $2M, based on VDOT's ability 
to only apply a limited level of funding over the next few years.
    The differences in the two agencies' comments related to the costs 
for implementing the regulation reflect the different levels of 
existing capabilities and reinforce the need to allow flexibility to 
the States in identifying roadways beyond the Interstate routes to be 
included in the Real-Time System Management Information Program. The 
considerable differences in the two agencies' interpretations of the 
proposed requirements confirms the need for implementation guidance 
that FHWA will develop for DOTs as assistance in the development of 
their real-time information programs. Later in this document, the FHWA 
is requesting additional comments on the cost benefit analysis to 
obtain more specific information in order to achieve the objectives of 
the statute and the rule to ensure an optimal benefit and cost balance.

Comments Directed at Specific Sections of the Proposed New 23 CFR Part 
511

Section 511.301--Purpose

    As indicated previously, almost every response supports the goals 
of the proposed rule. A common comment among all responders is ``we 
support the desire of FHWA to promote advances in the delivery of 
traveler information,'' and the NPRM was praised for being well meaning 
and ultimately beneficial as travelers will be more informed than they 
are today. However, as already discussed and as presented in subsequent 
sections, commenters did not uniformly support all of FHWA's approaches 
to achieving those goals.

Section 511.303--Definitions

    In the NPRM, definitions were included in proposed Sec.  511.305, 
but for this final rule to be consistent with other regulations, 
definitions are in Sec.  511.303.
    As indicated earlier, comments were received requesting 
clarification about the definition of ``accuracy,'' and a similar 
clarification concerning roadway weather conditions. In both cases, the 
definitions for these terms and related language in Sec.  511.303 have 
been supplemented to clarify these distinctions.
    INRIX suggested that the term ``(e.g., volume and speed are * * 
*)'' used in the definition for ``availability'' be changed to ``(e.g., 
speed and travel time)'' since volume is only used one time in the 
rule, and only for illustrative purposes. The TTI suggested eliminating 
definitions for ``accessibility'' and ``coverage'' as these terms are 
not used in the proposed rule. The FHWA agrees with these comments and 
Sec.  511.303 of the rule has been modified accordingly.
    Comments on subsequent sections of the proposed rule that are 
discussed

[[Page 68422]]

elsewhere resulted in including additional definitions in the rule. The 
definitions of ``full construction activities'' and the definition of 
``routes of significance'' have been added to Sec.  511.303.
    Although no specific comments were received concerning the 
``traffic and travel conditions'' definition allowing the reporting of 
predicted conditions, this clause was determined to be unnecessary and 
was removed from Sec.  511.303.

Section 511.307--Eligibility for Federal Funding

    Section 511.307 outlines the eligibility of Federal funding to plan 
and deploy the real-time monitoring elements and the project 
applications to establish a real-time information program on Interstate 
and non-Interstate highways. Almost all agencies commented that 
establishing a real-time information program either costs too much or 
puts a financial hardship on them, and requested that dedicated funding 
be provided. Addressing this request for dedicated funding is beyond 
the purview of the rule. However, additional comments indicated 
financial burdens were due to the inability of agencies to use eligible 
funds within the time frame specified in the rule due to their planning 
and budgeting cycles. As indicated previously, FHWA determined that 
extending completion of establishing the real-time information program 
for traffic and travel conditions will facilitate State and local 
agencies use of the eligible funds identified in this section.
    The AASHTO, five DOTs, and INRIX identified funding for the 
operation and maintenance costs of a Real-Time System Information 
Management Program as a barrier to its implementation. In several 
instances the comments also indicated a misunderstanding of the 
eligibility of the operating and maintenance costs of such a system for 
Federal funding. The funds identified in Sec.  511.307 Eligibility for 
Federal funding of the final rule may be applied to the operating and 
maintenance costs of a Real-Time System Information Management Program. 
The Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21) reinforces 
the Federal commitment to manage and operate the Nation's 
transportation system. Under TEA-21, the Federal-aid Highway Program 
continues eligibility of operating costs for traffic monitoring, 
management, and control. The legislation defines operating costs as 
including labor costs, administrative costs, costs of utilities and 
rent, and other costs associated with the continuous management and 
operation of traffic systems. Additional information concerning 
operating cost eligibility under the Federal-aid Highway Program can be 
found at URL: http://www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/travelinfo/resources/ops_memo.htm. To more completely illustrate funding eligibility, the final 
rule's language has been modified to include an explicit reference to 
the eligibility of operations, including applicable preventative 
maintenance to ensure reliable operations, for funding.

Section 511.309--Provisions for Traffic and Travel Time Conditions 
Reporting

    Section 511.309 presents the timeliness, accuracy, and availability 
provisions that the real-time information programs are subject to for 
reporting traffic and travel time conditions; and authorizes use of 
legacy or new mechanisms to establish the real-time information 
programs. Almost all of the commenters included a comment on one or 
more of the proposed provisions with most expressing concern that many 
of the requirements were not achievable. The San Francisco Bay Area 
Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) commended FHWA for basing 
the proposed requirements on the work of an industry group such as the 
511 Coalition. However, MTC expressed concerns about translating the 
recommended goals from the industry group to required minimum 
requirements for the Real-Time System Management Information Program 
and commented that there needs to be some tailoring of the 
recommendations. In contrast, several companies viewed the requirements 
differently and commented that more restrictive provisions should be 
specified. For example, NAVTEQ commented that the final rule should 
reduce the timeliness requirements from 10 and 20 minutes (urban and 
rural) to 5 and 10 minutes. BMW also commented that 5 minutes or less 
was more appropriate, but also indicated that the reduced time limits 
initially should be treated as goals. The following summarizes the 
responses to this section.
511.309(a)(1) Construction Activities
    The NPRM proposed a timeliness requirement for providing full 
construction activities from the time of occurrence of 20 minutes or 
less for highways outside of metropolitan areas and 10 minutes or less 
for highways within metropolitan areas. As noted previously, many DOTs 
described the difficulty of obtaining construction activity information 
in rural areas and asserted that the cost to provide construction 
activity information specified in the proposed rule would greatly 
exceed any potential benefit. They also requested clarification of the 
expectations intended in the time thresholds. The FHWA finds many of 
the difficulties described by the proposed rule to be valid and has 
included the definition for ``full construction activities'' in Sec.  
511.301 and has modified the rule language in Sec.  511.309(a)(1) to 
clarify which construction activities that close or reopen roads and 
lanes are to be reported, how quickly the information is to be made 
available, and the information update requirements.

Section 511.309(a)(2) Roadway or Lane Blocking Incidents and Events

    Section 511.309(a)(2) presents the requirements for providing 
information about roadway or lane blocking traffic incidents. The 
requirements for providing this information are similar to those 
specified in Sec.  511.309(a)(1) above, and received similar comments. 
Many commenters requested clarification related to whether the 
reporting requirement for traffic incidents was related to the time of 
the occurrence of the incident or to the verification of the incident. 
The FHWA has modified the rule language in Sec.  511.309(a)(2) to 
clarify the requirements of the information to be made available are 
based on when the traffic incident is verified.

Section 511.309(a)(3) Roadway Weather Observations

    Section 511.309(a)(3) presents the requirements for delivering 
roadway weather observations. As discussed earlier, many DOTs expressed 
concern about the timeliness requirements in the proposed rule that the 
roadway weather observation information was to be made available. They 
also requested clarification of the information to be reported. The 
FHWA has modified the rule language in Sec.  511.309(a)(3) to clarify 
that the minimum reporting requirements are for weather conditions that 
result in hazardous driving conditions or roadway and lane closures.

Section 511.309(a)(4) Travel Time Information

    Section 511.309(a)(4) presents the requirement for providing 
updated travel time information along highways within metropolitan 
areas. In response to comments that practical algorithms and systems to 
derive travel times on roadways currently exist only for limited access 
highways, the rule's

[[Page 68423]]

language in Sec.  511.309(a)(4) has been modified to clarify the 
minimum requirement for updated travel time information is for 
Interstate and designated routes of significance in the Metropolitan 
Areas that are limited access highways.

Section 511.309(a)(5) Information Accuracy and Section 511.309(a)(6) 
Information Availability

    In response to requests for clarification of the accuracy and 
availability relationship from several agencies, the rule's language in 
Sec.  511.311(b) has been modified as noted below.

Section 511.311(b) Real-Time Information Program Establishment--Data 
Quality

    Section 511.311(b) requires States to develop methods by which data 
quality can be ensured to the data consumer. Several agencies 
questioned how timeliness, availability, and accuracy will be measured. 
They asked what are FHWA's expectations for how DOTs will monitor the 
program. The rule's language in Sec.  511.311(b) has been modified to 
afford flexibility to States in meeting quality requirements based on 
the methods they select to implement the Real-Time System Management 
Information Program. The States shall develop procedures or processes 
for measuring and ensuring the quality of the information provided 
under the Real-Time System Management Information Program, and receive 
concurrence from FHWA on the selected processes. The States shall 
demonstrate how the selected processes measure the quality of the 
information in meeting the requirements of sections 511.309(a)(5) and 
511.309(a)(6) and provide for remedial actions to maintain the required 
levels of quality.

Section 511.311(c) Real-Time Information Program Establishment--
Participation

    Agencies that should participate in implementation of a real-time 
information program are listed in Sec.  511.311(c). The comments 
generally acknowledged that significant cooperation is desired, but 
mentioned drawbacks of requiring multiple partners. Several DOTs 
pointed out that State agencies cannot verify the accuracy or 
timeliness of data from another agency. Commenters also pointed out 
that widespread agency participation will necessitate education and 
training be provided for first responders such as county/local law 
enforcement and fire departments. The FHWA recognizes the institutional 
difficulties that must be resolved for multiagency participation in a 
real-time information program, but continues to believe that the 
benefits realized far exceed the efforts required to craft a successful 
program.

Section 511.311(d) Real-Time Information Program Establishment--Update 
of Regional ITS Architecture

    Section 511.311(d) discusses the requirement that States and 
regions that have created a Regional ITS architecture are required to 
maintain and update the architecture, and indicates in broad terms the 
general factors that must be addressed by the updated architecture 
including featuring the components and functionality of the Real-Time 
System Management Information Program. Several comments mistakenly 
applied the regional ITS architecture general factors to the 
requirements of the Real-Time System Management Information Program. 
The AASHTO commented that the State and regional ITS architectures that 
have been developed are based on regionally determined customer needs 
and may have identified other higher priority needs in their 
architecture than those identified in the NPRM. The AASHTO notes that 
this may present a particular concern to the State agencies if funding 
has already been allocated to those areas. Many commenters expressed 
that the 2 year time frame is too short for some States and regions to 
address their regional ITS architecture issues. For this reason, among 
others, FHWA has extended the time requirement in sections 511.311(e) 
and 511.313(d) to establish the real-time information program to 4 
years after publication of final rule.
    The San Francisco Bay Area MTC commented that, while Sec.  
511.311(d) requires ITS architectures to be updated to reflect the 
requirements of the Real-Time System Management Information Program, 
some ITS architectures may already include requirements for the Real-
Time System Management Information Program. The MTC comments that Sec.  
511.311(d) should be modified to require ITS architectures to be 
evaluated to determine if updates are needed to reflect the Real-Time 
System Management Information Program, and that those that do not 
adequately reflect the Real-Time System Management Information Program 
should be updated accordingly. The FHWA agrees with this comment and 
the rule language in Sec.  511.311(d) has been modified to require 
evaluation of ITS architectures to determine whether they need to be 
updated to reflect requirements of the Real-Time System Management 
Information Program.

Section 511.311(e) Real-Time Information Program Establishment--
Effective Date

    Section 511.311(e), which specifies an effective date of 2 years 
after publication to establish a Real-Time System Management 
Information Program, drew many responses. As reported earlier, based on 
the comments received, FHWA has changed the Sec.  511.311(e) to require 
establishment of the Real-Time System Management Information Program 
for traffic and travel conditions reporting along the Interstate system 
highway within 4 years after the date of the rule's publication.

Section 511.313(b) Metropolitan Area Real-Time Information Program 
Supplement--Requirement

    Metropolitan Areas are required to implement a Real-Time System 
Management Information Program on both Interstates and routes of 
significance in the Metropolitan Area. The term ``Metropolitan Area'' 
is intended to allow options for either the State or the Metropolitan 
Area's local government agency to implement the program, based on what 
works best for each location.

Section 511.313(c) Metropolitan Area Real-Time Information Program 
Supplement--Routes of Significance

    Several DOTs submitted questions concerning designation of ``routes 
of significance'' in metropolitan areas. Several of the commenters 
observed that success of these provisions require cooperation between 
the agencies and FHWA concerning priorities, funding, and staffing, and 
that consultation with FHWA is necessary to define their specific 
system. The FHWA concurs with these observations. Furthermore, upon 
reviewing this section, the specific responses to the questions raised 
are dependent upon local conditions and should be resolved through a 
dialogue between the local agencies and their respective FHWA 
Divisions. In response to the comments received about ``routes of 
significance,'' its definition is included in Sec.  511.303
    As indicated, many of the DOTs responding to the NPRM identified 
the 4-year time requirement to establish routes of significance real-
time information program to be unattainable. Based on these comments, 
Sec.  511.313(c) of the rule has been changed to indicate a 6-year time 
requirement for implementation of the Real-Time System Management 
Information Program on ``routes of significance'' in Metropolitan 
Areas.

[[Page 68424]]

Section 511.313(d) Metropolitan Area Real-Time Information Program 
Supplement--Effective Date

    As indicated earlier, AASHTO and many of the DOTs responding to the 
NPRM identified the 2-year time requirement to establish the 
Metropolitan Area real-time information program to be unattainable. The 
rule now allows 4-years for establishment of the program in Interstate 
routes in Metropolitan Areas.

Section 511.315 Program Administration

    Section 511.315 concerns compliance with the rule and the ability 
for FHWA to withhold highway trust funds based on compliance. Many DOTs 
were concerned about that possibility and wanted to know more about how 
compliance would be assessed and judged. As stated previously, Sec.  
511.311(b) of the rule has been edited to provide additional parameters 
regarding data quality and completeness, and to include language that 
describes the compliance verification processes to be applied in each 
State, as agreed between the State and FHWA. Section 511.315 states 
that procedures normally available to FHWA for Federal-aid actions are 
also applicable to actions related to the Real-Time System Management 
Information Program. Paragraph (a) of Sec.  511.315 has been deleted 
because the subsection presented a potential ambiguity or contradiction 
in requiring compliance prior to approving projects to establish the 
Real-Time System Management Information Program. The proposed Sec.  
511.315(a) provisions are included in the remaining paragraph of Sec.  
511.315 by including a reference to ITS project administration 
contained in 23 CFR 940.13.

Request for Comments

    While the FHWA is issuing this final rule, which will become 
effective on the dates noted above, the FHWA is also seeking additional 
comments relating to the costs and benefits of the Real-Time System 
Management Information Program and general information about current 
and planned programs. Although the Regulatory Cost Analysis found in 
the docket for this rulemaking attempts to capture the scope of costs 
and benefits associated with this rule, it is challenging to determine 
a comprehensive picture of costs and benefits given the flexibility of 
approaches that can be used and the limitations of the current studies.
    The FHWA seeks comments related to the following:
    (1) What are the costs and benefits of each individual provision 
required under rule? If some provisions have net costs, would certain 
modifications to those provisions lead to net benefits?
    (2) What are the impacts of requiring these provisions on States 
and Metropolitan Areas (do some States and Metropolitan Areas realize 
net costs instead of net benefits)? If some States and Metropolitan 
Areas realize net costs, would certain modifications to provisions 
ensure net benefits?
    (3) Is there a specific, alternative approach to calculating costs 
and benefits that would be more appropriate than the current use of the 
Atlanta Navigator Study?
    (4) Although information dissemination to the public is not within 
scope of this rule, it is important to understand how information is 
typically disseminated so that the technologies used to collect and 
monitor data is compatible with technologies used to disseminate this 
information. This is especially important to keep up with new 
technological advances and to ensure that States use the most 
effective, low cost methods to both collect and disseminate 
information.
    (A) What technologies will States use to collect and monitor 
information under this rule?
    (B) What technologies are States planning to use to disseminate 
this information or what are they already using?
    (C) Do the technologies States plan to use present any 
interoperability issues? Do they allow for use of advanced technologies 
that could be the most cost-effective means of collecting and 
disseminating this information?
    (D) Are there any structural impediments to using low-cost advanced 
technologies in the future given the provisions and specifications 
contained in this rule?
    (E) Given the research investment into wireless communications 
systems in the 5.9 GHz spectrum for Intelligent Transportation Systems 
applications, to what extent could systems in this spectrum also be 
used to fulfill the requirements of this rule and/or enable other 
applications?
    (F) Given that there are legacy technologies in place now, and that 
there are new technologies on the horizon that are being adopted, how 
can we ensure that investments made today to comply with this rule are 
sustainable over the long term?
    (5) This rule defines Metropolitan Areas to mean the geographic 
areas designated as Metropolitan Statistical Areas by the Office of 
Management and Budget with a population exceeding 1,000,000 
inhabitants. Is this population criterion appropriate, rather than 
considering traffic, commuting times, or other considerations?

Rulemaking Analyses and Notices

Executive Order 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review) and DOT 
Regulatory Policies and Procedures

    The FHWA has determined that this rule is an economically 
significant rulemaking action within the meaning of Executive Order 
12866 and is a significant rulemaking action within the meaning of the 
U.S. Department of Transportation's regulatory policies and procedures. 
This rule establishes provisions and parameters for States to implement 
real-time monitoring of the transportation system as mandated in 
section 1201 of SAFETEA-LU. The Real-Time System Management Information 
Program is a newly created and complex program, receiving no dedicated 
Federal funding. This action is considered significant because of the 
substantial State and local government, and public interest in the 
information products enabled through this program.
    This rule does not adversely affect, in a material way, any sector 
of the economy. This rule sets forth provisions and parameters for 
State DOTs to implement on Interstate highways and maintain from 2010 
until 2019 an effective Real-Time System Management Information 
Program, which will result in some cost impacts to States or 
Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs). This period would reflect 
the establishment of real-time information programs plus a 7-year 
period of operation. The 7-year period of operation assumes that 
equipment and supporting material for the real-time information program 
is fully replaceable after the operational life cycle. The FHWA has 
conducted a cost analysis identifying each of the proposed regulatory 
changes that would have a significant cost impact for MPOs or DOTs. 
This cost analysis is included as a separate document, entitled 
``Regulatory Cost Analysis of Proposed Rulemaking,'' and is available 
for review in the docket. Based on the cost analysis, FHWA estimates 
that the net present value of the estimated costs and benefits through 
2021 represents at least a $315 million benefit to American travelers 
and taxpayers, corresponding to a benefit-cost ratio of 1.3. In 
addition, the DOTs have the flexibility to use most other Federal 
highway dollars including Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) 
program and Surface Transportation Program (STP) funds for real-time 
monitoring program

[[Page 68425]]

implementation. Additionally, State Planning and Research funds can be 
applied fully towards the planning of real-time monitoring projects.
    Based on the annual costs and the annual benefits noted above, the 
following table summarizes the annualized costs, benefits, and net 
benefits (in million $) at discount rates of 3 percent and 7 percent.
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TR08NO10.022

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    In compliance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (Pub. L. 96-354, 
5 U.S.C. 601-612) FHWA has evaluated the effects of this action on 
small entities. The FHWA has determined that States and MPOs are not 
included in the definition of small entity set forth in 5 U.S.C. 601. 
Small governmental jurisdictions are limited to representations of 
populations of less than 50,000. MPOs, by definition, represent 
urbanized areas having a minimum population of 50,000. The FHWA 
certifies that this action does not have a significant economic impact 
on a substantial number of small entities.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    Section 202 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA) 
(Pub. L. 1041-4; 109 Stat. 48) requires Federal agencies to prepare a 
written assessment of the costs, benefits, and other effects of 
proposed or final rules that include a Federal mandate likely to result 
in the expenditure by States, local, or tribal governments, in the 
aggregate, or by the private sector, of more than $100 million annually 
(adjusted for inflation to $141.3 million in 2008 dollars). Before 
promulgating a rule for which a written statement is needed, section 
205 of the UMRA generally requires the agency to identify and consider 
a reasonable number of regulatory alternatives and adopt the least 
costly, most cost-effective, or least burdensome alternative that 
achieves the objective of the rule. The provisions of section 205 do 
not apply when they are inconsistent with applicable law. Moreover, 
section 205 allows the agency to adopt an alternative other than the 
least costly, most cost-effective, or least burdensome alternative if 
the agency publishes with the final rule an explanation of why that 
alternative was not adopted.
    This final rule does not impose unfunded mandates as defined by the 
UMRA. The definition of ``Federal Mandate'' in the UMRA excludes 
financial assistance of the type in which State, local, or tribal 
governments have authority to adjust their participation in the program 
in accordance with changes made in the program by the Federal 
Government. (2 U.S.C. 658, 1502) The Federal-aid highway program 
permits this type of flexibility. Conditions for obtaining Federal 
grant funds, including new conditions on existing grant programs, are 
not considered Federal Mandates under the law. States have the 
flexibility to offset the costs of this statutory requirement by 
amending their responsibilities for financing and carrying out their 
program, and any additional costs resulting from this Federal action 
can be offset by changes in State or local policies.
    The effects of this rule are discussed earlier in the preamble and 
in the ``Regulatory Cost Analysis of Proposed Rulemaking'' contained in 
the docket for this rulemaking. The FHWA has taken care to craft the 
final rule for this statutory requirement in such a way that offers 
States broad flexibility to minimize costs of compliance with the 
standard. Because the rule is neither centered on a particular 
technology nor on a technology-dependent application, these documents 
consider a number of alternatives and provide a number of technological 
choices. This rule provides a phased implementation approach and limits 
the content requirements for a real-time information system only to 
those needed to provide congestion relief. Additionally, while no new 
funding is available for this program, to the extent that the final 
rule will require expenditures by State, local, or tribal governments, 
these activities will not be unfunded mandates because States and MPOs 
are afforded flexibility to use their National Highway System, CMAQ, 
and STP Federal-aid apportionments for activities related to the 
planning and deployment of real-time monitoring elements that advance 
the goals of the Real-Time System Management Information Program. How 
the States use these funds is only limited by the statutory and 
regulatory grant requirements and conditions. As such, the agency has 
chosen the most cost-effective alternative that achieves the objectives 
of the rulemaking.

Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    This rule has been analyzed in accordance with the principles and 
criteria contained in Executive Order 13132, and the FHWA has 
determined that this action does not have sufficient

[[Page 68426]]

federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a Federalism 
assessment. The FHWA has also determined that this action would not 
preempt any State law or State regulation or affect the States' ability 
to discharge traditional State governmental functions. The FHWA 
contacted the National Governors' Association in writing about this 
determination. The National Governors' Association did not respond.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3501 et 
seq.), Federal agencies must obtain approval from the Office of 
Management and Budget (OMB) for each collection of information they 
conduct, sponsor, or require through regulations.
    The FHWA has determined that this rule contains a requirement for 
data and information to be collected and maintained in the support of 
operational decisions that affect the safety and mobility of the 
traveling public related to information on construction activities, 
including implementing and removing lane closures; roadway or lane 
blocking traffic incident information; roadway or lane blocking roadway 
weather conditions; and calculated travel times along highway segments. 
In order to streamline the process, FHWA requested that OMB approve a 
single information collection clearance for all of the data in this 
regulation. The Real-Time System Management Information Program 
supports the collection of transportation system data, including the 
use of automated methods, with the transportation system data available 
for other use. The Real-Time System Management Information Program 
itself does not produce informational or reporting products that are 
required by the U.S. Department of Transportation or other entities in 
the Federal Government.
    Commenters to this information collection include DOTs from all 50 
States, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia. The FHWA estimates 
that 17 States presently do not appear to provide real-time information 
on a continual basis to the public or to other States using 
conventional information dissemination technologies.\2\ The FHWA 
estimates that a total of 148,920 burden hours per year would be 
imposed on these non-Federal entities to provide all the required 
information to comply with the proposed regulation requirements for 
real-time information programs.\3\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ Based upon the table ``Freeway Miles Under Traffic 
Surveillance'' from the 2007 Metropolitan Summary survey. This table 
is retrievable from the ITS Deployment Statistics Web site, 
available at the following URL: http://www.itsdeployment.its.dot.gov/Results.asp?year=2007&rpt=M&filter=1&ID=307.
    \3\ Burden hour calculation based on 8,760 hours per year 
multiplied by the number of locations (17).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Further, there are 36 States operating at least one 511 traveler 
information dissemination service that provide nearly all of the 
information categories identified in this proposed regulation.\4\ The 
automated systems that gather the input for delivery for 511 also 
convey information via Dynamic Message Signs (DMS) for en-route 
travelers. The use of DMS is common for conveying travel time 
information messages. Based on known reports for 511 delivery services 
and for travel time messages on DMS in metropolitan areas \5\ a more 
accurate calculation of the burden hours is possible. For all 36 States 
known to provide automated real-time traveler information: All 36 
States provide construction activities information; all 36 States 
provide roadway incident information; and 31 States provide roadway 
weather observations. Of the 49 metropolitan areas currently subject to 
the provisions of travel time information required by this regulation, 
33 provide travel time information on highway segments.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \4\ Based upon the ``Locations with 511 Services'' information 
available at the following URL: http://www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/511/. As 
of July 2009 there are 39 known 511 systems in operation.
    \5\ Based on the page ``Travel times on DMS Status,'' available 
at the following URL: http://www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/travelinfo/dms/.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The estimated total burden to provide the additional information 
needed to attain full compliance with the proposed regulation includes 
148,920 burden hours for States with no observable real-time 
information capability, plus 140,160 burden hours for subject 
metropolitan areas to deliver travel time information, plus 43,800 
burden hours for States with real-time information capabilities to 
deliver weather observation updates. The total estimated burden, 
therefore, is 332,880 hours for automated sources to deliver the 
information categories identified in this regulation.

National Environmental Policy Act

    The agency has analyzed this proposed action for the purpose of the 
National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321-4347) and has 
determined that the establishment of the Real-Time System Management 
Information Program, as required by the Congress in SAFETEA-LU, may 
yield a $384 million benefit from the reduction of greenhouse gas 
emissions and also from reductions of fuel consumption \6\ and has 
determined that this rule will not significantly affect the quality of 
the human environment. The promulgation of regulations has been 
identified as a categorical exclusion under 23 CFR 771.117(c)(20).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \6\ This estimated benefit is documented in Table 1 on Page 14 
of the Regulatory Benefit-Cost Analysis of Proposed Rulemaking 
included in this docket.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Executive Order 12630 (Taking of Private Property)

    The FHWA has analyzed this proposed rule under Executive Order 
12630, Governmental Actions and Interference with Constitutionally 
Protected Property Rights. The FHWA does not anticipate that this 
action would affect a taking of private property or otherwise have 
taking implications under Executive Order 12630.

Executive Order 12988 (Civil Justice Reform)

    This action meets applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) 
of Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform, to minimize litigation, 
eliminate ambiguity, and reduce burden.

Executive Order 13045 (Protection of Children)

    We have analyzed this proposed rule under Executive Order 13045, 
Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety 
Risks. The FHWA certifies that this action would not cause any 
environmental risk to health or safety that might disproportionately 
affect children.

Executive Order 13175 (Tribal Consultation)

    The FHWA has analyzed this action under Executive Order 13175, 
dated November 6, 2000, and believes that this action would not have 
substantial direct effects on one or more Indian tribes; would not 
impose substantial direct compliance costs on Indian tribal 
governments; and would not preempt tribal laws. The final rule 
addresses provisions and parameters for the Real-Time System Management 
Information Program and would not impose any direct compliance 
requirements on Indian tribal governments. Therefore, a tribal summary 
impact statement is not required.

Executive Order 13211 (Energy Effects)

    We have analyzed this proposed action under Executive Order 13211, 
Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, 
Distribution, or Use dated May 18, 2001.

[[Page 68427]]

We have determined that the final rule is not a significant energy 
action under that order since it is not likely to have a significant 
adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy. 
Therefore, a Statement of Energy Effects is not required.

Executive Order 12898 (Environmental Justice)

    Executive Order 12898 requires that each Federal agency make 
achieving environmental justice part of its mission by identifying and 
addressing, as appropriate, disproportionately high and adverse human 
health or environmental effects of its programs, policies, and 
activities on minorities and low-income populations. The FHWA has 
determined that this final rule does not raise any environmental 
justice issues.

Regulation Identification Number

    A regulation identification number (RIN) is assigned to each 
regulatory action listed in the Unified Agenda of Federal Regulations. 
The Regulatory Information Service Center publishes the Unified Agenda 
in April and October of each year. The RIN contained in the heading of 
this document can be used to cross-reference this action with the 
Unified Agenda.

List of Subjects in 23 CFR Part 511

    Grant programs--transportation, Highway traffic safety, Highways 
and roads, Transportation, Travel, Travel restrictions.

    Issued on: October 22, 2010.
Victor M. Mendez,
Administrator.

0
In consideration of the foregoing, FHWA adds a new part 511, to Title 
23, Code of Federal Regulations, to read as follows:

PART 511--REAL-TIME SYSTEM MANAGEMENT INFORMATION PROGRAM

Subpart A--[Reserved]
Subpart B--[Reserved]
Subpart C--Real-Time System Management Information Program
Sec.
511.301 Purpose.
511.303 Definitions.
511.305 Policy.
511.307 Eligibility for Federal funding.
511.309 Provisions for traffic and travel conditions reporting.
511.311 Real-time information program establishment.
511.313 Metropolitan area real-time information program supplement.
511.315 Program administration.

    Authority:  Section 1201, Pub. L. 109-59; 23 U.S.C. 315; 23 
U.S.C. 120; 49 CFR 1.48.

Subpart A--[Reserved]

Subpart B--[Reserved]

Subpart C--Real-Time System Management Information Program


Sec.  511.301  Purpose.

    The purpose of this part is to establish the provisions and 
parameters for the Real-Time System Management Information Program. 
These provisions implement Subsections 1201(a)(1), (a)(2), and (c)(1) 
of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity 
Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU) (Pub. L. 109-59; 119 Stat. 1144), 
pertaining to Congestion Relief.


Sec.  511.303  Definitions.

    Unless otherwise specified in this part, the definitions in 23 
U.S.C. 101(a) are applicable to this subpart. As used in this part:
    Accuracy means the measure or degree of agreement between a data 
value or set of values and a source assumed to be correct.
    Availability means the degree to which data values are present in 
the attributes (e.g., speed and travel time are attributes of traffic) 
that require them. Availability is typically described in terms of 
percentages or number of data values.
    Congestion means the level at which transportation system 
performance is unacceptable due to excessive travel times and delays.
    Data quality means the fitness of data for all purposes that 
require such data.
    Full construction activities mean roadway construction or 
maintenance activities that affect travel conditions by closing and 
reopening roadways or lanes.
    Metropolitan areas means the geographic areas designated as 
Metropolitan Statistical Areas by the Office of Management and Budget 
in the Executive Office of the President with a population exceeding 
1,000,000 inhabitants.
    Real-time information program means the program by which States 
gather and make available the data for traffic and travel conditions. 
Such means may involve State-only activity (including cooperative 
activities engaging multiple State agencies), State partnership with 
commercial providers of value-added information products, or other 
effective means that enable the State to satisfy the provisions for 
traffic and travel time conditions reporting stated in this section.
    Routes of significance are non-Interstate roadways in metropolitan 
areas that are designated by States as meriting the collection and 
provision of information related to traffic and travel conditions. 
Factors to be considered in designating routes of significance include 
roadway safety (e.g., crash rate, routes affected by environmental 
events), public safety (e.g., routes used for evacuations), economic 
productivity, severity and frequency of congestion, and utility of the 
highway to serve as a diversion route for congestion locations. All 
public roadways including arterial highways, toll facilities and other 
facilities that apply end user pricing mechanisms shall be considered 
when designating routes of significance. In identifying these routes, 
States shall apply the collaborative practices and procedures that are 
used for compliance with 23 CFR part 940 and 23 CFR part 420.
    Statewide incident reporting system means a statewide system for 
facilitating the real-time electronic reporting of surface 
transportation incidents to a central location for use in monitoring 
the event, providing accurate traveler information, and responding to 
the incident as appropriate. This definition is consistent with Public 
Law 109-59; 119 Stat. 1144, Section 1201(f).
    Timeliness means the degree to which data values or a set of values 
are provided at the time required or specified.
    Traffic and travel conditions means the characteristics that the 
traveling public experiences. Traffic and travel conditions include, 
but are not limited to, the following characteristics:
    (1) Road or lane closures because of construction, traffic 
incidents, or other events;
    (2) Roadway weather or other environmental conditions restricting 
or adversely affecting travel; and
    (3) Travel times or speeds on limited access roadways in 
metropolitan areas that experience recurring congestion.
    Validity means the degree to which data values fall within the 
respective domain of acceptable values.
    Value-added information products means crafted products intended 
for commercial use, for sale to a customer base, or for other 
commercial enterprise purposes. These products may be derived from 
information gathered by States and may be created from other party or 
proprietary sources. These products may be created using the unique 
means of the value-added information provider.

[[Page 68428]]

Sec.  511.305  Policy.

    This part establishes the provisions and parameters for the Real-
Time System Management Information Program for State DOTs, other 
responsible agencies, and partnerships with other commercial entities 
in establishing real-time information programs that provide 
accessibility to traffic and travel conditions information by other 
public agencies, the traveling public, and by other parties who may 
deliver value-added information products.


Sec.  511.307  Eligibility for Federal funding.

    (a) Subject to project approval by the Secretary, a State may 
obligate funds apportioned to the State under Title 23 U.S.C. sections 
104(b)(1), also known as National Highway System funds, 104(b)(2), also 
known as CMAQ Improvement funds, and 104(b)(3), also known as STP 
funds, for activities relating to the planning, deployment and 
operation, including preventative maintenance, of real-time monitoring 
elements that advance the goals and purposes of the Real-Time System 
Management Information Program. The SPC funds, apportioned according to 
23 U.S.C. 505(a), may be applied to the development and implementation 
of a real-time information program.
    (b) Those project applications to establish a real-time information 
program solely for Interstate System highways are entitled to a Federal 
share of 90 percent of the total project cost, pursuant to 23 U.S.C. 
120(a). Those project applications to establish a real-time information 
program for non-Interstate highways are entitled to a Federal share of 
80 percent of the total project cost, as per 23 U.S.C. 120(b).


Sec.  511.309  Provisions for traffic and travel conditions reporting.

    (a) Minimum requirements for traffic and travel conditions made 
available by real-time information programs are:
    (1) Construction activities. The timeliness for the availability of 
information about full construction activities that close or reopen 
roadways or lanes will be 20 minutes or less from the time of the 
closure for highways outside of Metropolitan Areas. For roadways within 
Metropolitan Areas, the timeliness for the availability of information 
about full construction activities that close or reopen roadways or 
lanes will be 10 minutes or less from the time of the closure or 
reopening. Short-term or intermittent lane closures of limited duration 
that are less than the required reporting times are not included as a 
minimum requirement under this section.
    (2) Roadway or lane blocking incidents. The timeliness for the 
availability of information related to roadway or lane blocking traffic 
incidents will be 20 minutes or less from the time that the incident is 
verified for highways outside of Metropolitan Areas. For roadways 
within Metropolitan Areas, the timeliness for the availability of 
information related to roadway or lane blocking traffic incidents will 
be 10 minutes or less from the time that the incident is verified.
    (3) Roadway weather observations. The timeliness for the 
availability of information about hazardous driving conditions and 
roadway or lane closures or blockages because of adverse weather 
conditions will be 20 minutes or less from the time the hazardous 
conditions, blockage, or closure is observed.
    (4) Travel time information. The timeliness for the availability of 
travel time information along limited access roadway segments within 
Metropolitan Areas, as defined under this subpart, will be 10 minutes 
or less from the time that the travel time calculation is completed.
    (5) Information accuracy. The designed accuracy for a real-time 
information program shall be 85 percent accurate at a minimum, or have 
a maximum error rate of 15 percent.
    (6) Information availability. The designed availability for a real-
time information program shall be 90 percent available at a minimum.
    (b) Real-time information programs may be established using legacy 
monitoring mechanisms applied to the highways, using a statewide 
incident reporting system, using new monitoring mechanisms applied to 
the highways, using value-added information products, or using a 
combination of monitoring mechanisms and value-added information 
products.


Sec.  511.311  Real-time information program establishment.

    (a) Requirement. States shall establish real-time information 
programs that are consistent with the parameters defined under Sec.  
511.309. The real-time information program shall be established to take 
advantage of the existing traffic and travel condition monitoring 
capabilities, and build upon them where applicable. The real-time 
information program shall include traffic and travel condition 
information for, as a minimum, all the Interstate highways operated by 
the State. In addition, the real-time information program shall 
complement current transportation performance reporting systems by 
making it easier to gather or enhance required information.
    (b) Data quality. States shall develop the methods by which data 
quality can be ensured to the data consumers. The criteria for defining 
the validity of traffic and travel conditions made available from real-
time information programs shall be established by the States in 
collaboration with their partners for establishing the programs. States 
shall receive FHWA's concurrence that the selected methods provide 
reasonable checks of the quality of the information made available by 
the real-time information program. In requesting FHWA's concurrence, 
the State shall demonstrate to FHWA how the selected methods gauge the 
accuracy and availability of the real-time information and the remedial 
actions if the information quality falls below the levels described in 
Sec.  511.309(a)(5) and Sec.  511.309(a)(6).
    (c) Participation. The establishment, or the enhancement, of a 
real-time information program should include participation from the 
following agencies: Highway agencies; public safety agencies (e.g., 
police, fire, emergency/medical); transit operators; and other 
operating agencies necessary to sustain mobility through the region 
and/or the metropolitan area. Nothing in this subpart is intended to 
alter the existing relationships among State, regional, and local 
agencies.
    (d) Update of Regional ITS Architecture. All States and regions 
that have created a Regional ITS Architecture in accordance with 
Section 940 in Title 23 CFR shall evaluate their Regional ITS 
Architectures to determine whether the Regional ITS Architectures 
explicitly address real-time highway and transit information needs and 
the methods needed to meet such needs. Traffic and travel conditions 
monitoring needs for all Interstate system highways shall be 
considered. If necessary, the Regional ITS Architectures shall be 
updated to address coverage, monitoring systems, data fusion and 
archiving, and accessibility to highway and transit information for 
other States and for value added information product providers. The 
Regional ITS Architecture shall feature the components and 
functionality of the real-time information program.
    (e) Effective date. Establishment of the real-time information 
program for traffic and travel conditions on the Interstate system 
highways shall be completed no later than November 8, 2014.

[[Page 68429]]

Sec.  511.313  Metropolitan Area real-time information program 
supplement.

    (a) Applicability. Metropolitan Areas as defined under this 
subpart.
    (b) Requirement. Metropolitan Areas shall establish a real-time 
information program for traffic and travel conditions reporting with 
the same provisions described in Sec.  511.311.
    (c) Routes of significance. States shall designate metropolitan 
areas, non-Interstate highways that are routes of significance as 
defined under this subpart. In identifying the metropolitan routes of 
significance, States shall collaborate with local or regional agencies 
using existing coordination methods. Nothing in this subpart is 
intended to alter the existing relationships among State, regional, and 
local agencies.
    (d) Effective date. Establishment of the real-time information 
program for traffic and travel conditions reporting along the 
Metropolitan Area Interstate system highways shall be completed no 
later than November 8, 2014. Establishment of the real-time information 
program for traffic and travel conditions reporting along the State-
designated metropolitan area routes of significance shall be completed 
no later than November 8, 2016.


Sec.  511.315  Program administration.

    Compliance with this subpart will be monitored under Federal-aid 
oversight procedures as provided under 23 U.S.C. 106 and 133, 23 CFR 
1.36, and 23 CFR 940.13.

[FR Doc. 2010-27987 Filed 11-5-10; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-22-P