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Transportation Sector Case Studies

These resources include case studies of adaptation in the transportation sector, developed by the Georgetown Climate Center as part of a cooperative agreement with the Federal Highway Administration. The case studies include examples of how adaptation has been incorporated into decisionmaking at all stages of the transportation lifecycle: assessing vulnerability, planning, design, and operations and maintenance.

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NPS Gulf Islands National Seashore - Fort Pickens Ferry System

September 2015

In order to maintain cost-effective, sustainable visitor access to the Gulf Islands National Seashore (GUIS), the National Park Service (NPS) proposed the development of passenger ferry service from Pensacola, Florida, to Fort Pickens. Santa Rosa Island, the site of Fort Pickens and part of GUIS, is susceptible to coastal storms and erosion. The Fort Pickens Road within GUIS is frequently damaged by storms, including hurricanes in 2004 and 2005. The transportation system in the Fort Pickens area is particularly vulnerable to disruptions caused by these impacts.

Related Organizations: National Park Service (NPS)

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) Sustainable Infrastructure Guidelines, Appendix 2: Climate Change Projections

March 23, 2011

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) in 2011 created Sustainable Infrastructure Guidelines to rate agency infrastructure projects using a point system and checklist that incorporates design evaluation based on climate change projections for temperature, precipitation, and flood elevation. The Guidelines require application of these climate change projections and evaluation of impacts in order to receive points for the “Site Assessment” phase of project design, which generally involves assessing existing conditions and using the information to identify best management practices (BMPs) for the project.

Related Organizations: The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Massachusetts Climate Change Adaptation Report – Transportation Strategies

September 2011

The Massachusetts Climate Change Adaptation Report provides an assessment of impacts to key infrastructure assets across the state, and presents specific strategies for building the resilience and adaptive capacity of the transportation sector. The report describes the process, principles, findings, and recommendations of the Massachusetts Climate Change Adaptation Advisory Committee, and begins the identification and development of adaptation strategies for the state. The ‘Key Infrastructure’ chapter discusses specific vulnerabilities and impacts anticipated for the transportation sector that could result from climate change, and outlines no regret, short-term, and long-term strategies to help increase resilience, decrease vulnerabilities, and better prepare for a changing climate.

Related Organizations: Massachusetts Climate Change Adaptation Advisory Committee

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Miami Beach Stormwater Infrastructure Adaptation

The City of Miami-Beach is taking action to protect Miami Beach roads, sidewalks, storm drains, and other key infrastructure from sea-level rise and flooding by installing pumps, raising roads, and protecting the city with seawalls. The project seeks to guard both critical resources like the City’s water and power supply as well as roads and property from flooding. The City is in the process of investing an estimated $500 million for this project that is slated to last six more years. Funding comes from local taxes and 84% increase in stormwater fees.

Related Organizations: City of Miami Beach, Florida

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Cape Cod (Massachusetts) Interagency Transportation, Land Use, and Climate Change Pilot Project

March 2012

This report describes a pilot project in Cape Cod, Massachusetts initiated by the federal Interagency Working Group on Transportation, Land Use and Climate Change for the purpose of developing and testing a framework for assessing the effects of sea level rise (SLR) on land- use and transportation infrastructure, and reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from transportation sources. The goal of the project was to create a replicable process for other regions to follow for using scenario planning to consider climate change in transportation and land-use plans, and for coordinating across agencies and integrating agency planning processes.

Related Organizations: John A. Volpe National Transportation System Center, Cape Cod Commission

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Development of a Methodology for the Assessment of Sea Level Rise Impacts on Florida’s Transportation Modes and Infrastructure

January 2012

This report provides a methodology for assessing the impacts of sea-level rise (SLR) on Florida transportation infrastructure. The report analyzes the advantages and disadvantages of different methods of forecasting SLR in Florida and provides recommendations for how those methods should be used by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT). The report also provides recommendations for identifying vulnerable transportation assets and addressing potential impacts of SLR to those assets. After this methodology was developed, FDOT funded a subsequent project to develop a GIS-based planning tool that aids in statewide and regional assessments of transportation asset vulnerability to SLR.

Related Organizations: Florida Department of Transportation, Florida Atlantic University (FAU)

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Responding to Climate Change in New York State: ClimAID – Transportation Chapter

November 2011

This state-level assessment provides information on New York's vulnerability to climate change and is specifically designed to assist in the development of adaptation strategies. The goal of the Integrated Assessment for Effective Climate Change Adaptation Strategies in New York State (ClimAID) is to provide decision-makers with progressive information on climate change effects on the state, and to facilitate adaptation planning. The ClimAID report reviews climate change impacts and adaptation options for eight sectors in New York including water resources, coastal zones, ecosystems, agriculture, energy, transportation, public health and telecommunications.

Related Organizations: Cornell University, Columbia University, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Climate Change Adaptation in the Metropolitan Washington Region: Draft Transportation Sector Vulnerabilities

August 2011

The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (MWCOG) Transportation Vulnerability Assessment was developed as part of a broader climate change adaptation initiative.  This preliminary vulnerability assessment for the transportation sector identifies the possible climate impacts to the transportation sector, including roads and bridges, rail, facilities and buildings, bicycle and pedestrian buildings, and airports.

Related Organizations: Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (MWCOG, COG)

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Dallas-Fort Worth Airport Operational Changes to Manage Extreme Snow and Ice Events

2011

Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) has introduced maintenance and operations procedures for snow and ice removal in cases of unusual snow events that would limit the airport’s role as one of the world’s busiest airports.   After experiencing a large snow and ice storm in 2011, DFW could not handle the snow-clearing needs to keep the airport operating at full capacity. The storm occurred right before the Super Bowl in 2011, halting the flow of thousands of visitors using the airport for travel and bringing attention to the need to better manage severe winter storms.

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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FHWA-HEP-12-010: The Use of Climate Information in Vulnerability Assessments

January 2011

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) memorandum “The Use of Climate Information in Vulnerability Assessments” provides guidance on how to access and use historical climate change information and projections of future climate conditions when performing vulnerability assessments for transportation systems. This memorandum describes several sources of climate information and technical assistance, and provides recommendations on how transportation planners can use this information as they consider their climate-related risks.

Related Organizations: Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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