NCMM’s State of the State Profiles

  • Author: Jerom Theunissen
  • Date: February 21, 2020

Statewide and regional approaches to transportation coordination and mobility management networks are at the forefront of the next generation of the delivery of transportation services.  Although often thought of in the context of improving accessibility for people with disabilities, seniors, veterans, and other transit-dependent or underserved populations, these networks are increasingly contributing to statewide initiatives designed to generate better and more efficient transportation for all riders.

Image Credit - Memphis MPO
Discussions in the field have shown increasing interest as to how mobility management can be implemented and operationalized at the statewide level. NCMM’s 2018 State of the States Report explored the potential of statewide mobility management networks by analyzing barriers to formation and sustaining mobility management networks. Building upon this work, NCMM is seeking to collect data and perspectives by direct contact with relevant stakeholders involved in coordination, including but not limited to State DOTs, State Departments of Health and Human Services, and Mobility Managers.  By compiling “State of the State” reports for each state, a greater understanding can be gained about statewide coordinated transportation efforts and the role of mobility management within them.
 

Understanding the Characteristics of Coordination Structures

Frameworks set all the primary parameters of transportation coordination, including vision, strategy, programs, and what is to be done. They also establish responsibilities and roles of coordination partners and stakeholders. Most importantly, these frameworks rely on unique funding programs, obligations, and mechanisms of coordination to tie everything together. In order to capture this variety of approaches, the framework of each State of the State report is as follows:

  • Overview – Background to coordination efforts in the state. Explore the policy context of coordination, specifically regarding the impetus for coordination. Is there a specific coordination policy with objectives and targets? Is there a common framework throughout the state? Is this framework included in the State Coordinated Transit Plan or equivalent? Also, what is the organizational structure of the coordination process, both at the state and regional level?
  • Roles and Responsibilities of Coordinating Institutions, Agencies, or Mobility Managers –What roles and responsibilities do each of the participating stakeholders have in the transportation coordination organizational structure? Are non-traditional transportation stakeholders at the table (read: CCAM-esque agencies) If mobility management is a feature of coordination in the state, what roles do these mobility managers play? How do they operationalize coordination efforts at the state levels?
  • Geographic Scale of Network – How is coordination organized geographically in the state? What is the coverage of transportation services for the transportation disadvantaged?
  • Funding Sources/Framework – How is money for transportation coordination distributed? Which programs are used? What methods and mechanisms are used to share costs for transportation coordination?
  • Lead Agency – Which agency is primarily overseeing coordination efforts?
  • Establishing Authority – How is coordination mandated? Is it codified by law? By governor’s executive order? The commissioner for transportation?
  • Activities of Network – What have been the latest activities or initiatives surrounding coordination? What outcomes have been documented as a result of coordination of past activities or initiatives?
  • Current Hurdles – What are the barriers to coordination at the state level? Do any of these hurdles impede the ability to build a mobility management network?
 
How States Coordinate Transportation
Preliminary findings from these reports offer good reason to anticipate that statewide coordination and mobility management networks are poised for greater success.  Early findings from these profiles reveal that there is no single blueprint for implementing a successful network, with definitions of “success” varying widely. However, these profiles aim to demonstrate the existence of a growing body of best practices around mobility management that can greatly benefit existing and nascent networks. Sharing these examples from around the country can benefit coordination and mobility management practices on state and regional levels.

Read the first two reports for Nebraska and Kansas  on our “States at a Glance” page.  If your state is interested in sharing its coordination and mobility management story, feel free to contact me via email: jtheunissen@easterseals.com.

We’d love to hear from you!

Have more mobility news that we should be reading and sharing? Let us know! Reach out to Kirby Wilhelm (wilhelm@ctaa.org).