Strategy AC3.1: Ensure that freight is included in all multi-modal transportation planning initiatives.
Both the U.S. Department of Transportation's (USDOT) new MAP-21 legislation and North Carolina Department of Transportation's (NCDOT) draft Prioritization 3.0 process recognize the importance of freight movement, and consider it in determining funding allocations and project prioritization.
For example, in determining the value of travel time savings, the NCDOT project prioritization process uses different values of time for trucks and automobiles. Points are also awarded to projects that provide or improve direct connections to intermodal terminals and to those that benefit freight corridors (defined by level of daily truck volumes). At the federal level, MAP-21 introduces significant new freight provisions, establishes goals for a national freight policy, and requires USDOT to develop a National Freight Strategic Plan. Additional federal funding is available for projects on the national freight network; states are encouraged to develop their own freight plans and advisory committees to be eligible. The importance of freight movement to economic vitality is explicitly recognized, and there is special emphasis on access of rural communities to markets and economic development.