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Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices (2014)

Chapter: Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities

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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix C - Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22252.
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C-1 A P P E N D I X C Introduction This appendix provides a detailed description of all the phases and activities of the transportation project develop- ment and delivery process. Figure 10 in the report provides a generalized view of the overall process (i.e., Level 1). Figure 11 shows a more detailed (intermediate) depiction of the process (i.e., Level 2). Figure 12 through Figure 18 provide zoomed-in views of the Level 2 model. These models correspond to the traditional design-bid-build project development and deliv- ery method. Other methods could involve different activity sequences. For example, in design-build projects, it is com- mon to hand off the project to a contractor at the begin- ning of the design phase, and that contractor is responsible for completing the design as well as the actual construction. In design-build projects, state DOTs typically retain overall responsibility for real property acquisition, although in some situations, states delegate these activities to the contractor (to the extent possible). Regardless of project delivery method, laws and regulations govern when certain critical activities can take place. For example, with certain exceptions, real property acquisition can only start after the environmental document has been prepared, reviewed, and approved. Definition, Selection, Financing, and Scheduling The purpose of this pool of activities is to identify and prioritize needs; develop the project scope; identify fund- ing sources; secure federal, state, and local agreements; and authorize the project to proceed to the appropriate level of development. Scoping involves determining and document- ing the project purpose and need; defining the project limits; identifying major challenges, issues, and risks; developing the approach and requirements for project development and delivery; and preparing preliminary cost estimates and schedules. Develop Long-Range Transportation Plans This activity involves conducting long-range transportation plans to facilitate the identification of needs, priorities, and financial resources. Long-range transportation plans include metropolitan transportation plans (MTPs), rural transporta- tion plans, and statewide transportation plans (STPs), which provide a framework for long-term planning, development, and preservation of the transportation system in the state. Long- range transportation plans cover at least 20 years, are inter- modal, and include a financial plan. Context sensitive solution (CSS) principles (as a collaborative, interdisciplinary approach to involve all stakeholders in the definition of a shared trans- portation vision) are sometimes used to help establish regional, local, and neighborhood vision or long-term objectives (58*). Identify Project Need and Purpose This activity involves identifying the need for a project as well as the project goals and purpose so that the assessment of project requirements and preliminary cost estimates can start. The outcome is frequently in the form of a purpose and need statement. Factors for determining the need for a proj- ect may include crash frequency and severity, pavement or bridge conditions, and conformance with current geometric standards. For urban projects, particularly capacity improve- ments, project need may be determined from traffic model- ing of future travel demands. Identify Project Requirements and Conduct Studies This activity involves defining basic project requirements and conducting supporting studies to develop a project scope that will guide subsequent phases of project development and delivery. One of the outcomes of this activity should be Integrated Transportation Project Development and Delivery Process Phases and Activities *References appear on pages 124–127 in the report.

C-2 a high-level identification of environmental, real property, and utility requirements, which are frequently on the criti- cal path in the development and delivery of transportation projects. In some cases, risk analysis tools assist with the identification of risks and critical project elements. Federal and state requirements and state policies frequently affect proj- ect requirements and development. Examples include envi- ronmental standard requirements, conformity to congestion management requirements, toll lane and high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lane requirements, and railroad corridor pre- servation requirements. Studies conducted may include feasi- bility studies, PEL studies, traffic studies, and major investment studies (MISs). Prepare Cost Estimate and Identify Funding Sources This activity involves developing a preliminary cost esti- mate for the project and identifying potential funding sources. Identifying funding sources is one of the most critical activi- ties in the project development process. Depending on the type and timing of the project, it may be necessary to consider alternative funding sources (e.g., public improvement dis- tricts, public-private agreements, transportation reinvest- ment zones, private funding, and donations). The project cost estimate needs to be updated throughout the project to reflect increasing levels in the amount of information and detail as well as decreasing levels in the amount of uncertainty and risk (53, 59). Develop/Update Intermediate and Short-Range Programs This activity involves developing or updating programs that lead to the identification of projects that should proceed to the next phase of development. Intermediate and short-range transportation programs typically include the unified trans- portation program (UTP) and the statewide transportation improvement program (STIP). The UTP is a 10-year program that covers all transportation modes and all types of projects. It identifies projects, indicates the authorized level of devel- opment, and lists estimated letting years for project-specific programs. The UTP is normally updated annually. The STIP is a 4-year program of work that is consistent with the state- wide long-range transportation plan and the UTP. It includes a financial plan to document the availability of funds and required matching funds from state and local sources. A fed- eral-aid project cannot be authorized for construction unless it is included in the STIP. STIPs are normally updated at least every 2 years but may be revised on a quarterly basis as war- ranted. Updating STIPs could include adjusting project pri- orities and refining project requirements and cost estimates. Authorize Project Development This activity usually involves programming the project (or certain phases of the project) and securing authorization to continue with subsequent phases. In some states, this mile- stone results in assigning a project number or ID that remains with the project for the rest of the process. It is also common at this point to designate a project manager who is respon- sible for scheduling and coordinating all the activities during the preliminary design phase. Secure Federal, State, and Local Agreements This activity involves preparing and executing agreements with other entities, particularly those that participate in funding for the development and delivery of the project. For federal- aid projects, it is necessary to execute a project agreement with FHWA before project expenses can be reimbursed. Autho- rizations and agreements are possible for projects that are included in an approved STIP and have met relevant environ- mental requirements (see the Environmental Process section). Those projects are funded based on state DOT requests for FHWA authorization to proceed with all or selected phases of project activity. Most agreements are with governmental entities, mainly LPAs, although agreements with private-sector agencies for specific work (e.g., railroads and utility owners), are also possible. Agreements with LPAs can cover a wide range of activities, such as preliminary engineering, real property acquisition, utility coordination and relocation, design, con- struction, and maintenance. These agreements outline fund contributions and other responsibilities by each party. In a typical situation, the state DOT maintains responsibility for coordinating and completing certain tasks (e.g., real prop- erty acquisition or utility relocation) and the LPA contrib- utes funds. However, it is also possible for the LPA to agree to coordinate and complete those activities with or without reimbursement from the state, depending on the situation. In the case of real property acquisition, although an LPA may be responsible for acquiring real property for a project, the proj- ect owner (i.e., the state DOT) is still responsible for ensuring that all appraisals, negotiations, and acquisitions comply with relevant federal and state laws and regulations. This activity also involves preparing and executing agree- ments with other agencies to enable specific uses of the right- of-way without transferring title of the real property. An example of this type of use is when a city or a county agrees to share land for the transportation project but is not interested in, or is barred from, transferring title to the land. Another example is when the state DOT agrees to let other agencies use part of the right-of-way for purposes such as park-and- ride lots, hike-and-bike trails, or boat ramps.

C-3 Update Project Requirements, Cost Estimate, and Schedule This activity involves updating project requirements, cost estimate, and schedule based on the information gathered during the preliminary engineering and environmental review phases. Updating the project scope is a critical activity that helps to guide project development and delivery while minimizing the risk of scope creep and project overruns. Authorize Project Design This activity involves authorizing a project to proceed with the development of detailed design plans, construction speci- fications, detailed cost estimate, and real property acquisition. Authorizing project design enables agencies to substantially complete design and real property activities, after which the project becomes a candidate for construction authorization. Authorize Project Construction This activity involves authorizing a project to proceed with the construction phase. Authorizing project construction enables agencies to complete all phases of work for a project, and generally applies to projects that are relatively advanced in the design phase. Alternative Analysis and Preliminary Plans The purpose of this pool of activities is to conduct studies of alternative locations and alignments, coordinate public and agency interaction as part of the environmental process (see next section), and develop the selected alternative in prepara- tion for the design phase. Conduct Conceptual Design Meeting This activity involves conducting a meeting to identify fun- damental concepts and preliminary design criteria for a proj- ect. It includes using or updating project summary checklists and forms to help document project requirements. (Note: This activity is not the same as the conceptual design meet- ing that some state DOTs conduct at the beginning of the design phase.) Collect Data for Preliminary Design This activity involves identifying and collecting data needed for the preliminary design. Examples of data include traffic and traffic crash data; site visit data; information about exist- ing utility facilities; information about previous hydraulic studies; aerial imagery, DTMs, and topographic and other rel- evant surveys. Data gathered also include information about previous studies and reports. Obtain Permission to Enter Property This activity involves obtaining permission to enter a prop- erty where data collection needs to take place. Depending on the situation, it can range from requesting verbal or written permission from the property owner to following more com- plex procedures as required by laws and regulations. Practices throughout the country vary widely. In general, temporary entry for survey and data collection purposes is not consid- ered a taking (60). However, damages to property during the data collection activity are normally subject to compensation (60, 61). In some states, the power of eminent domain car- ries the right to enter a property that the state is planning to acquire. However, regardless of legal considerations, obtain- ing the consent of the owner prior to entering his/her prop- erty is an example of a best practice for building rapport and good will that contributes to a more effective working rela- tionship and a smoother property acquisition process. Obtaining permission to enter property is a critical activity in connection with the collection of data during the prelimi- nary engineering phase. It is recommended to process right- of-entry requests for engineering surveys separately from environmental surveys. It is also recommended to process right-of-entry requests to access railroad property separately. Develop Alternative Alignments (Preliminary Schematics) This activity involves developing alternative alignments (or preliminary schematics) and typical sections. Each alternative includes completing a traffic operational analysis to determine anticipated levels of service (LOS), developing preliminary construction and real property cost estimates, and evaluating how the alternative meets the project purpose and need. This activity involves preliminary coordination with other stake- holders. Coordination with resource agencies is particularly critical for the review of alternative alignments to avoid sur- prises during the environmental process (see next section). Select Preferred Alignment and Develop Geometric Schematic This activity involves developing a preferred alignment and a geometric alignment in preparation for (or as part of) consultations with the public and the environmental process (see next section). Schematic development includes activities such as refining alignments and geometrics, preparing pre- liminary plans and layouts, developing preliminary pavement

C-4 design reports, conducting hydraulic studies, and conducting preliminary planning for bridges. It also involves circulating the geometric schematic for review by stakeholders such as MPOs; regional transportation agencies; other agencies at the local, state, and regional levels; and the public. It also includes reviewing the schematic based on feedback from stakeholders. Conduct VE Study This activity involves reviewing and analyzing the project systematically to develop suggestions for improving the value and quality of the project, meeting the project objectives at the lowest overall cost, and reducing the time to complete the project. The VE study is normally the responsibility of a multidisciplinary team of experts who are not involved in the project. VE studies are recommended whenever there is a high potential for cost savings relative to the cost of the VE analysis or the potential exists to improve project performance or qual- ity (e.g., when the project involves complex technical issues, challenging constraints, unique requirements, and competing community and stakeholder objectives). MAP-21 introduced several changes to the criteria and thresholds for conducting VE studies. Beginning on October 1, 2012, a VE analysis is required for projects on the National Highway System (NHS) receiving federal assistance with an estimated total cost of $50,000,000 or more. A VE analysis is also required for bridge projects on the NHS receiving federal assistance with an estimated total cost of $40,000,000 or more. Prior to MAP-21, a VE analysis was required for federal-aid projects with an estimated total cost of $25 million or more or for bridge projects with an estimated total cost of $20 million or more. Under MAP-21, a VE analysis is not required for non- NHS projects or for design-build projects. Obtain Approval for Final Geometric Schematic This activity involves securing approval of the revised geo- metric schematic. Pending approval of the environmental document, approval of the preliminary plans is one of the pre- requisites for a project to proceed to the detailed design phase. Environmental Process The purpose of this pool of activities is to consult with environmental resource agencies and the public to ensure the project meets all relevant environmental laws, regulations, and policies. Several federal laws and regulations govern the environmental process, including the following (62): • The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), as amended (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), requires the use of an interdisciplinary approach in planning and decision making for actions that affect the environment. NEPA requires an assessment of environmental impacts on the human envi- ronment and consideration of alternatives and mitigation where feasible. • 23 CFR 771 and 40 CFR 1500-1508 contain federal environ- mental regulations that are the basis for surface transporta- tion projects. In general, 23 CFR 771 requires documentation to demonstrate compliance, an evaluation of alternatives including a no-build alternative, public involvement, and mitigation when necessary. 40 CFR 1500-1508 include pro- cedures for the implementation of NEPA requirements, including how to reduce the length of required assessments and how to reduce project development delays caused by NEPA-required activities. Examples of delay reduction strategies mentioned in the regulation include: – Integrate the NEPA process into early planning. – Emphasize interagency cooperation before prepar- ing environmental documents, rather than submitting adversary comments on completed documents. – Use the scoping process for an early identification of real issues. – Establish appropriate time limits for the environmental document preparation process. – Prepare environmental documents early in the process. – Eliminate redundancy with state and local procedures by providing for joint preparation of environmental documents. – Combine environmental documents with other docu- ments. • The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compen- sation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) of 1980, as amended (codified as 42 U.S.C. 9601 and following), addressed uncontrolled releases of hazardous substances and, in par- ticular, assigned liability to responsible parties to clean up uncontrolled hazardous waste sites. The 1980 act is also known as the Superfund Act. The Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA) of 1986 revised CERCLA and extended the taxing authority for the Superfund Trust Fund. It also led to passage of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA), also known as SARA Title III (codified as 42 U.S.C. 11001 and following). The characterization of hazardous materials is an integral component of the environmental process, with ramifications for the valuation of real property that may be acquired for a transportation project. If the contamination from hazard- ous substances occurs in the right-of-way, the project owner can be responsible regardless of whether the agency caused or knew of the contamination. For example, the agency can be responsible if it is a current owner or operator of the facil- ity, a former owner or operator at the time of disposal of the

C-5 hazardous substance, the party who arranged for disposal, or the party who transported the substance. Minimizing liabil- ity involves assessing and managing potential environmental risks as they are discovered, exercising due diligence, and in some cases, using indemnification. Provide Planning and Environmental Linkages This activity involves including environmental consider- ations in the planning process and facilitating the transi- tion of activities or decisions from the planning process to the environmental review process. PEL is often described as linking planning and NEPA and is considered a best prac- tice for streamlining the overall project development and delivery process. PEL enables the analysis of alternatives during the planning phase and a simplification of the environmental review, such as if alternatives are eliminated based on analysis performed during the planning process and then not re-studied during the environmental decision-making process (63, 64, 65). PEL helps to reduce duplication of work and foster better deci- sion making by promoting early coordination of planning and environmental staff. It also facilitates the use of informa- tion produced in the planning process to address and resolve NEPA-level issues, including, but not limited to, the purpose and need statement, documentation of the range of alterna- tives, identification of significant environmental and com- munity impacts, and identification of potential indirect and cumulative impacts. Specific to real property acquisition, PEL enables the early engagement of right-of-way staff to assess potential real property impacts under various project alterna- tives being assessed in the planning phase, document initial real property scoping and cost estimate requirements, and make this information available for use during the environ- mental process. Prepare Draft Environmental Documentation This activity involves conducting a series of activities that lead to the preparation of an appropriate environmental document, which, depending on the situation, could be one of the following: • Categorical exclusion. A CE applies to projects that, based on previous experience, do not involve significant environ- mental impacts. • Environmental assessment. An EA applies to projects that do not meet the requirements for a CE or do not clearly require the preparation of an environmental impact state- ment, or to projects for which it is believed that an EA would assist in determining the need for an EIS (e.g., when the significance of the potential impacts is unknown). • Environmental impact statement. An EIS applies to proj- ects that may have significant social, economic, and/or environmental impacts. Preparing the environmental document often requires identifying public and environmental concerns, conducting early and frequent interagency coordination, and gathering data from ground surveys, as well as federal, state, and local agency databases. It also requires completing a number of impact assessment evaluations, including natural and cul- tural resource impacts, hazardous materials, socioeconomic impacts, air quality studies, and noise impacts. Of particular interest to real property workflows is the identification of public and environmental concerns at the beginning of the environmental process, interagency coordi- nation, evaluation of hazardous materials, and evaluation of socioeconomic impacts. Identifying public and environmen- tal concerns involves identifying environmental variables and plans for public involvement. This task, which also includes an initial assessment of the project site, should be performed concurrently with the development of alternative alignments and the determination of major utility facility and property ownership concerns within the proposed right-of-way. Interagency coordination involves contacting resource agen- cies and other stakeholders to gather feedback and other related information in connection with the project. Resource agen- cies have regulatory and permitting authority for proposed construction activities within their jurisdiction, which makes it critical to include project scope of work items that cover applying for all the necessary permits and complying with all relevant federal and state laws and regulations. Particu- larly for large projects, it is strongly recommended to involve resource agencies to review alternative alignments and get a preliminary buy-in for a preferred alternative (see previous section) before completing the preparation of the environmen- tal documentation. The characterization of hazardous materials is an integral component of the environmental process, with ramifications for the valuation of real property that may be acquired for a transportation project. If the contamination from hazard- ous substances occurs in the right-of-way, the project owner can be responsible regardless of whether the agency caused or knew of the contamination. For example, the agency can be responsible if it is a current owner or operator of the facil- ity, a former owner or operator at the time of disposal of the hazardous substance, the party who arranged for disposal, or the party who transported the substance. Minimizing liabil- ity involves assessing and managing potential environmental risks as they are discovered, exercising due diligence, and in some cases, using indemnification.

C-6 The evaluation of socioeconomic impacts involves assess- ing potential impacts on the community and residents. This includes regional and community growth patterns, impacts to individuals within the community (including persons who might be displaced by the transportation project), pub- licly owned lands, and cultural resources such as historical and archaeological resources. Projects must comply with EJ requirements to identify and address disproportionately high, adverse human health or environmental effects on minority and low-income populations, as well as requirements for ser- vices to those with LEP. Conduct Public Meetings This activity involves conducting and documenting one or more meetings to provide public access to the decision-making process and provide an avenue for public input. For projects that involve added capacity or public lands (i.e., Section 4[f] or 6[f] properties), a public hearing is generally required. Pub- lic meetings before a formal public hearing are common if a large amount of real property is needed for the project, the roadway function changes substantially, or controversy about the project is substantial, or for any high-profile project. In practice, most projects at transportation agencies are CE proj- ects. For these projects, a written notification usually satisfies the requirement for a meeting with affected property own- ers. As a result, a public hearing is not required. Public hear- ings are typically advertised in newspapers and other media in accordance with FHWA and state regulations. Regulations govern a variety of other requirements regarding public meet- ings, including geographic location, room size, agenda, proto- col, and procedures. Develop Final Environmental Document This activity involves developing the final environmen- tal document based on the feedback received from resource agencies and the public. Obtain Environmental Clearance This activity involves obtaining approval of the environ- mental document, which is a critical requirement to proceed with the design phase. Review and approval of the environ- mental document is the responsibility of a designated state agency (for non-federal-aid projects) or FHWA (for federal- aid projects) depending on the document classification. Required documents for the environmental clearance may include the following, depending on the type of environmen- tal document required: • Public involvement notes and comments. • Purpose and need statement. • Relevant environmental analyses and studies. • Landscape recommendations. • Environmental mitigation plans. • Public comments and responses. Meet Environmental Commitments After Clearance Meeting environmental commitments after clearance involves conducting activities needed to comply with envi- ronmental commitments (e.g., in connection with contami- nation handling and remediation activities in accordance with existing laws and regulations). It also involves coordina- tion during real property acquisition and relocation of dis- placed persons. This activity usually starts during design and can continue through construction, or even after construc- tion, to ensure the activities completed to meet environmen- tal commitments actually work as designed or scheduled. Conduct Environmental Reevaluation This activity involves conducting a reevaluation of envi- ronmental issues after the approval of the environmental document. Situations that could warrant an environmental reevaluation include changes in design, scope, land use, or real property requirements; new environmental impacts or changes to environmental impacts since the approval of the environmental document; regulatory changes; or the elapse of a prescribed number of years of no activity (e.g., no design work or no real property acquisition) (66). A reevaluation document can be as simple as a checklist or a note to the file, or can be a comprehensive document. There is usually not a standard format. For most projects (which are CE projects), reevaluations should succinctly verify that the scope of the project remains essentially the same; address any changes to the project and resulting impacts to natural, cultural, or social resources; and conclude that the environmental docu- ment or CE determination remains valid. Design and PS&E Assembly The purpose of this pool of activities is to complete and submit the project design in preparation for letting. It includes detailed and supplemental data collection; detailed engineer- ing and design analyses to finalize the project’s horizontal and vertical alignment; detailed design of elements such as roadway, operations, bridges, drainage, retaining walls, and other structures; sequence of work and traffic control plans; development of specifications and cost estimates; and PS&E assembly. Major milestones typically include a design meeting at the beginning of the design phase; 30 percent, 60 percent, and 90 percent design completion (referred to sometimes

C-7 as Stage 1, 2, 3 Design); 100 percent design completion; and completion and submission of the PS&E package. Conduct Design Meeting This activity involves scheduling and conducting a design meeting at the beginning of the design phase. The design meeting typically occurs after the environmental approval and the authorization to acquire property, and involves the project manager, the schematic team, the design team, and other stakeholders. The purpose of the design meeting is to review the basic design parameters, concepts, and criteria that were established during the preliminary design phase or by the project manager and confirm or update design criteria necessary to start the detailed design work. There is a wide range of practices regarding when to sched- ule (and what to include in) the design meeting. Depend- ing on factors such as project characteristics and urgency, some agencies hand off projects to the design team when the project is already 15–30 percent design complete. Prior to the design meeting, it may also be necessary to update some background information, particularly if the project has been inactive for some time. Conduct Design Analyses This activity involves completing a series of detailed analy- ses in preparation for the development of the final horizontal and vertical alignments. Examples of detailed analyses, which may be performed concurrently, include: • Collect supplemental, detailed design data. This task involves planning for and collecting new or additional data needed for the design. Examples of relevant data collection efforts include geotechnical surveys, topographic surveys, and traffic data. • Develop environmental mitigation details. This task involves designing environmental mitigation details that were iden- tified during the environmental process (e.g., creation or restoration of wetlands, cleanup of hazardous materials or petroleum products, relocation or protection of threatened species, removal or treatment of groundwater, and protec- tion of historic properties). • Conduct construction sequence and detour/road closure analysis. This task involves developing a construction sequence plan that optimizes construction activities as well as mobility and safety. It also involves developing a preliminary detour or road closure plan. • Conduct hydrologic and hydraulic analyses. This task involves refining and/or extending the hydrologic study (normally produced during the preliminary design phase) and completing a detailed hydraulic analysis to identify the design storm frequency, crossing structure size and type, and bridge scour design parameters. This analysis is fre- quently on the critical path, which makes it important to coordinate this activity with the development of the final alignment design. Develop Final Horizontal and Vertical Alignments This activity involves developing the final horizontal and vertical alignments based on which the detail design of a wide range of structures will proceed. This activity normally takes place between 30 percent and 60 percent design and includes a thorough review of previous data collection activities and analyses. It involves producing detailed plans, profiles, cross sections, and, increasingly, 3D models. Conduct Detailed Design This activity involves completing a series of detailed design tasks in preparation for the PS&E assembly. Some of these detailed design tasks have a real property compo- nent. Some tasks, such as the following, may be performed concurrently: • Complete roadway design. Activities include computing earthwork volumes; completing landscape and aesthetics plans; designing bicyclist and pedestrian facilities; design- ing miscellaneous details such as ramp grading, non-stan- dard inlets, curb and gutter transitions, driveway details, and grate and manhole covers; and checking for design exceptions or waivers. • Execute railroad agreements. It is normally required to execute agreements with railroad companies before doing any work on railroad right-of-way (e.g., in the case of grade separations, roadway improvements at grade crossings, seal coats, overlays, and buried and overhead communication infrastructure). Dealing with railroad companies is in some ways similar to dealing with utility owners. In both cases, the process involves identifying and evaluating impacts, analyzing resolution strategies, coordinating with external entities, negotiating and executing agreements, and plan- ning and conducting field construction. There are also significant differences, which can make coordination with railroads at many levels (including the real property func- tion) particularly challenging. Through the Second Strate- gic Highway Research Program (SHRP 2), TRB is engaged in active research to identify and promote strategies for improvement in the relationship between transportation agencies and railroad companies (67). • Complete operational design. Activities include complet- ing the signalization plan and other relevant intelligent

C-8 transportation system (ITS) design elements, the illumi- nation system, and relevant signing and striping design elements. • Complete bridge design. This activity involves collecting any additional geotechnical data that may be necessary and completing bridge design (superstructure and substructure of span bridges, as well as culvert details to handle design loads) and structural details. • Complete drainage design. This activity includes hydraulic design for culverts and storm drains, hydraulic design for pump stations, drainage details, and storm water pollution prevention plans. Drainage design requires close coordina- tion with roadway design. • Complete design of retaining and noise walls. This activ- ity includes the design of structures such as retaining and noise walls. These structures frequently have secondary real property and utility relocation implications. The reason is the typical location of retaining and noise walls (close to the right-of-way line) and the timing for identifying the need for those structures (sometimes late in the design phase, i.e., after real property needs have been identified and acquired and some utility relocations have already taken place). • Complete design of miscellaneous structures. This activ- ity includes the design of other structures such as concrete traffic barriers, overhead sign bridges, high mast illumina- tion, and customized bridge rail designs. • Complete sequence of work and traffic control plan. This activity includes developing and/or refining the construc- tion sequence of work plan and the traffic control plan. • Prepare construction specifications and provisions. This activity includes developing standard and special con- struction specifications as well as special provisions, which will guide the construction phase of the project. • Prepare cost estimate. This activity includes developing the engineer’s estimate of the anticipated cost to build the project. • Execute agreements and obtain permits. This activity includes executing third-party agreements and obtaining all the necessary permits with regulatory agencies that have permitting requirements for proposed construction activities. Examples of situations requiring permits include floodplain changes, affecting or building bridges over nav- igable waters, building an international bridge, affecting wetlands, storm water discharges, and affecting endangered species. Conduct 30 Percent, 60 Percent, and 90 Percent Design Meetings This activity involves scheduling and conducting meetings at critical milestones (typically at 30 percent, 60 percent, and 90 percent design). These meetings are intended to track the progress of ongoing design activities, further develop design concepts from previous meetings, identify design conflicts, and investigate solution alternatives. What to include and what documents to prepare for each of the meetings depends on factors such as project type, urgency, local practices, as well as agency policies and requirements. For example, for a 30 percent design meeting, it is common to review design analysis results and progress made to finalize the horizontal and vertical alignments. Real property acquisition and utility coordination activities are also discussed (although it is common for utility owners to start participating actively once the horizontal and vertical alignments are substantially complete). A 60 percent design meeting normally includes a review of detailed plans, profiles, and cross sections; specific requirements for detailed design features; and progress of real property acquisition and utility coordination and relocation. A 90 percent design meeting normally includes a review of all design documents and a discussion of forms and other requirements to prepare the PS&E package. Prepare PS&E Package This activity involves assembling the PS&E package and supporting documents. It also includes conducting quality control checks on the PS&E package to ensure accuracy and completeness. Conduct Final Design and Initial Construction Coordination Meetings This activity involves scheduling and conducting meet- ings to finalize the design phase and begin the transition to the construction phase. Finalizing the design phase includes reviewing and approving the PS&E package to facilitate the letting process as well as coordinating with affected stake- holders (e.g., design project manager, designers, utility own- ers, and construction project manager) all activities necessary for a successful hand off from design to construction. Right-of-Way Map, Authorization to Acquire Property, Property Acquisition, and Relocation Assistance The purpose of this pool of activities is to identify prop- erties that need to be acquired, obtaining authorization to acquire those properties, acquiring the properties, and pro- viding assistance for the relocation of displaced persons and businesses. Several federal laws and regulations govern the acquisition of property for transportation projects, including the following: • The Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policies Act of 1970 was enacted as Public Law

C-9 91-646 in January 1971. The Uniform Act, which is codi- fied as 42 U.S.C. 4601 et seq., provides the basic federal law for uniform real property acquisition and relocation assis- tance. 42 U.S.C. 4601 et seq. includes three sub chapters, as follows: – Subchapter I—General Provisions. – Subchapter II—Uniform Relocation Assistance. – Subchapter III—Uniform Real Property Acquisition Policy. Several other federal laws bear on the acquisition of real property for public use (e.g., in relation to civil rights, envi- ronmental concerns, age discrimination, and flood disaster protection), as described in the FHWA Project Develop- ment Guide (1). • 49 CFR 24 is the main source of federal regulation for implementation of the Uniform Act. The regulation applies to all federal agencies as well as federally assisted programs administered by those agencies. 49 CFR 24 includes the fol- lowing subparts: – Subpart A—General. – Subpart B—Real Property Acquisition. – Subpart C—General Relocation Requirements. – Subpart D—Payments for Moving and Related Expenses. – Subpart E—Replacement Housing Payments. – Subpart F—Mobile Homes. – Subpart G—Certification. • 23 CFR 710 applies to programs that FHWA administers whenever federal assistance under 23 U.S.C. is used. It addresses specific transportation and funding reimburse- ment topics not covered in the Uniform Act or 49 CFR 24. 23 CFR 710 includes the following subparts: – Subpart A—General. – Subpart B—Program Administration. – Subpart C—Project Development. – Subpart D—Real Property Management. – Subpart E—Property Acquisition Alternatives. – Subpart F—Federal Assistance Programs. – Subpart G—Concession Agreements. Provide Planning and Real Property Acquisition Linkages This activity involves conducting a high-level assessment of potential corridor real property requirements during the planning and programming phase and facilitating the tran- sition of activities and decisions that pertain to real prop- erty impacts to the environmental review and the process to acquire real property for the project. This activity is usually not mandatory but is highly recommended to help identify major real property acquisition issues early in the process. Conduct Real Property Research This activity involves identifying real property interests and restrictions such as existing right-of-way limits, ease- ments, and property owners from records maintained by local public entities. This activity takes place at the beginning of the preliminary design phase, along with other data collec- tion activities in preparation for the development of alterna- tive alignments. Later in the preliminary design phase, it also involves conducting data-gathering activities needed to refine preferred alignments to minimize real property impacts. Coordinate with Other Stakeholders This activity involves coordinating activities with other stakeholders in the project development process (e.g., in rela- tion to preliminary engineering requirements, potential relo- cation issues, and hazmat concerns). Coordination usually takes place through project development teams that include the project manager, staff from various relevant sections, and representatives of local and regional transportation agencies. This activity takes place in conjunction with the development of preliminary alignments and the preparation of the draft environmental documentation. Prepare Right-of-Way Map and Property Descriptions This activity involves developing maps, property descrip- tions, and other required documentation for each parcel or property interest that needs to be acquired. (Note: The term “parcel” may have different meanings in different states. For example, in one state a parcel might refer to the complete bundle of rights associated with a property, but in another state it might refer to each interest associated with a prop- erty.) Usually, right-of-way maps and property descriptions must be prepared by registered professional land surveyors in accordance with existing surveying laws, standards, and specifications. Although it is common to prepare sketches and other preliminary drawings while developing alternative alignments in support of the environmental process, the offi- cial right-of-way map is prepared after the final geometric schematic has been developed. Obtain Authorization to Acquire Real Property This activity involves requesting and obtaining authoriza- tion to acquire real property for a project. State DOTs use a variety of names for this authorization, including right-of- way release and right-of-way clearance. Typical requirements for obtaining authorization to acquire real property include

C-10 obtaining approval of the environmental document and an approved right-of-way map and executing agreements with LPAs to contribute funds (as needed). Shortly after obtaining authorization to acquire property, it is necessary to identify all impediments or special challenges in connection with the acquisition of real property (e.g., parcels without clear record title, parcels with hazardous materials, and special relocation needs). To reduce the impact of these challenges, it is advis- able to prepare a prioritized schedule for acquiring parcels and a list of issues pertinent to each parcel. Under certain conditions, it is possible to acquire property prior to the normal authorization to acquire real property, more specifically prior to the completion of the environmen- tal document. The conditions under which advance acquisi- tions can take place vary, depending on whether the advance acquisition involves state-only funding or federal-aid funding. According to 23 U.S.C. 108, state-funded advance property acquisitions (23 U.S.C. 108[c]) can take place before comple- tion of the environmental review without affecting subsequent approvals required by the state or a federal agency. Federally funded advance acquisitions (23 U.S.C. 108[d]) are subject to the provisions of the Uniform Act and 49 CFR 24 and require the completion of the environmental review before authoriz- ing federal funds for the acquisition of the real property. Following 23 CFR 710.501-505, early acquisitions include hardship acquisitions, protective buying, and donations. Hard- ship acquisition is an early acquisition at the property owner’s request to alleviate hardship to the owner. Protective buying is an early acquisition to prevent imminent development and increased costs on the preferred location, which would limit transportation choices. Conduct Appraisal or Waiver Valuation This activity involves conducting a written appraisal of the fair market value of the property or preparing a waiver valua- tion in situations that involve the acquisition by sale or dona- tion of real property with a low fair market value. According to the Uniform Act, real property must be appraised before the initiation of negotiations, except in situations that involve an acquisition by sale or donation with a low fair market value. The act does not describe the procedure for preparing waiver valuations. The owner or a designated representative must be given an opportunity to accompany the appraiser during the inspection of the prop- erty. Appraisals must disregard decreases or increases in the fair market value of the property caused by the project or by the likelihood that the property might be acquired for the project. Appraisals should also include uneconomic remnants and an equal interest in all buildings, structures, or other improvements that need to be removed or that are adversely affected. For buildings, structures, or other improvements, the appraisal should also include the contribution to the fair market value of the property to be acquired or the fair mar- ket value for removal from the real property, whichever is greater (notwithstanding the right or obligation of a tenant to remove the buildings, structures, or other improvements at the expiration of the lease). According to 49 CFR 24, the appraisal must be prepared by a qualified appraiser, using an agreed-upon scope of work as a basis to outline the expectations of the agency and the responsibilities of the appraiser. Agencies must establish cri- teria for determining the minimum qualifications and com- petency of appraisers and review appraisers. Contract (fee) appraisers must be state licensed or certified. In addition, an agency must offer to acquire at least an equal interest in all tenant-owned buildings, structures, or other improvements that need to be removed or that are adversely affected. This must include any improvement of a tenant-owner, who has the right or obligation to remove the improvement at the end of the lease term. Moreover, 49 CFR 24 defines just compen- sation for a tenant-owned improvement as the amount that the improvement contributes to the fair market value of the property, or its salvage value, whichever is greater. The Uni- form Act does not include a reference to the salvage value of a tenant-owned improvement. According to 49 CFR 24, an appraisal is not required if the owner is donating the property and releases the agency from its obligation to appraise the property, or the agency deter- mines that an appraisal is unnecessary because the valuation is uncomplicated and the fair market value of the property is $10,000 or less. This threshold could be increased up to $25,000 if the agency offers the property owner the option to have the agency appraise the property, and the owner decides the appraisal is not necessary. If the property owner selects the appraisal option, the agency must conduct the appraisal and the threshold increase does not apply. The regulations also state that the person who prepares a waiver valuation must have a sufficient understanding of the local real estate market. According to 49 CFR 24, appraisals are intended to be consistent with USPAP. In some situations, there may be a conflict with the standard if the scope of work is not defined properly, which has implications for licensing and liability. For example, an agency may define a scope of work without working collaboratively with the appraiser. However, accord- ing to USPAP, one of the responsibilities of the appraiser is to define the scope of work. Several factors influence what goes into a scope of work, including state practices and require- ments, project characteristics, parcel conditions, and equip- ment value. According to 49 CFR 24, after the initial appraisal has been conducted, a review appraiser conducts a review of

C-11 the appraisal for consistency with both industry and agency standards and practices. As needed, the review appraiser requests corrections or revisions to the appraisal. The review appraiser identifies each appraisal report as recommended (as the basis for the establishment of the amount believed to be just compensation), accepted (meets all requirements, but not selected as recommended or approved), or not accepted. If the review appraiser is not able to recommend an appraisal and the agency determines that it is impractical to obtain an additional appraisal, the review appraiser may present and analyze market information to support a recommended value. Additionally, the review appraiser must prepare a writ- ten report that identifies the appraisal reports reviewed and documents all the findings. Establish Just Compensation This activity involves determining the amount of just com- pensation for the property being acquired, i.e., the amount that results in both the property owner and the public being treated fairly (61). According to the Uniform Act, the acquiring agency must establish an amount that is believed to be just compensation for the real property. This amount cannot be less than the approved appraisal of the market value of the property. A requirement for establishing just compensation is to disre- gard any decrease or increase in the fair market value of real property prior to the date of valuation caused by the project, or by the likelihood that the property would be acquired for the project, other than that caused by physical deterioration within the reasonable control of the owner. According to 49 CFR 24, the amount determined to be just compensation must be approved by a responsible official of the acquiring agency. The initial offer may not be less than the amount of the agency’s approved appraisal but may exceed that amount if the agency determines that a greater amount reflects just compensation for the property. The agency must take into account the value of allowable damages or benefits to any remaining property. Typically, an appraiser develops an estimate of the fair mar- ket value, and just compensation is the amount the state DOT offers or pays. However, just compensation and fair market value are not defined or used consistently in all 50 states. For example, in Texas, the fair market value is estimated by the appraiser, and the sum of this value and any associated dam- ages becomes the amount of just compensation. Michigan has a provision to increase the estimate of the fair market value if a residential property is owner-occupied. Florida has a provision to increase the estimate of the fair market value if the right-of-way administrator provides an explanation of why the appraised value was not sufficient. Prepare and Make Written Offer This activity involves making a written offer to the owner to acquire the real property for the full amount believed to be just compensation. According to the Uniform Act, prior to the initiation of negotiations, the acquiring agency must provide the owner with a written statement of the amount that was established as just compensation, and a summary of the basis for establish- ing this amount. Partial acquisitions must list separately any compensation for damages to the remaining real property. In addition, if the partial acquisition would leave the owner with an economic remnant, the written offer must include an offer to acquire the uneconomic remnant. The acquiring agency must also make an offer to tenants for tenant-owned improve- ments provided that the offer does not result in duplication of payments. The payments can be made if the landowner dis- claims all interest in the tenant’s improvements. Although ten- ants have a right to reject payment and seek payment under other applicable laws, they must also assign, transfer, and release right, title, and interest on those improvements. According to 49 CFR 24, the offer must be written in plain, understandable English. If the recipients of the offer are unable to read and understand the offer, translation and counseling services must be provided to them. The summary statement must include the statement of the amount offered as just com- pensation; a description and location identification of the real property and the interest in the real property to be acquired; and the identification of the buildings, structures, and other improvements (including removable building equipment and trade fixtures) that are included as part of the offer of just com- pensation. The statement must also identify held-ownership interests in the property, if any, and indicate that they are not covered by the offer. Acquire by Negotiation This activity involves conducting negotiations that result in both parties agreeing on a purchase price, paying the agreed-upon price, and reimbursing the property owner for reasonable title transfer expenses. According to the Uniform Act, the acquiring agency must make every reasonable effort to acquire real property expe- ditiously by negotiation. Negotiations must be conducted free of any attempt to coerce the property owner into reach- ing an agreement. In case of donations, owners must also be informed about their right to receive just compensation prior to donating their property. The act does not address other options such as administrative settlements or alternate dis- pute resolutions. According to the act, prior to requiring the owner to sur- render possession, the acquiring agency must pay the owner

C-12 the agreed purchase price. The owner must also be reimbursed for reasonable title transfer expenses, including recording fees, transfer taxes, and other similar expenses; penalty costs for prepaying a preexisting mortgage; and prorated property taxes. In the case of an occupied property, the agency can require an owner to surrender possession only if 90 days have passed since providing a 90-day written notice (of the date by which move is required) to the owner. According to 49 CFR 24, the agency must make every effort to contact the property owner or a representative and discuss the offer, while providing the owner with a minimum of 30 days to review it. The agency also has to document that the offer has been received either in person or by certified mail. As opposed to the Uniform Act, 49 CFR 24 addresses the need or procedure for updating appraisals or reestablishing just compensation. 49 CFR 24 addresses requirements for an agency to acquire real property through administrative settlements and dona- tions, but not through alternate dispute resolutions. According to 49 CFR 24, the purchase price for the property may exceed the amount offered as just compensation when reasonable efforts to negotiate an agreement at the specified amount have failed and an authorized agency official determines the admin- istrative settlement to be reasonable, prudent, and in the public interest. The agency must also prepare a written justification for the administrative settlement when federal funds pay for or participate in acquisition costs. 49 CFR 24 clarifies that an agency must pay title transfer costs to the billing agent of the property owner whenever feasible. According to 23 CFR 710, an administrative settlement can be reached prior to filing a condemnation proceeding based on value-related evidence, administrative consideration, or other factors approved by an authorized agency official. According to 49 CFR 24, an agency can obtain right-of- entry for construction purposes prior to paying the owner the agreed purchase price only in the exceptional case (e.g., an emergency project) where there is no time to make an appraisal and a purchase offer and the owner approves this process. According to 49 CFR 24, negotiations also involve deter- mining who can be authorized to negotiate on behalf of the agency. Specifically, negotiators may not supervise or for- mally evaluate the performance of any appraiser or review appraiser performing appraisal or appraisal review work (although this requirement could be waived if it causes a hardship for the agency). Although it is not mandatory, an appraiser may be authorized to act as a negotiator for real property for which that person has made an appraisal if the offer to acquire the property is $10,000 or less. A similar con- sideration applies in the case of review appraisers and waiver valuation preparers. Acquire by Condemnation This activity involves conducting condemnation proceed- ings to acquire the property when the parties cannot reach a mutual agreement about the terms and conditions of the purchase (and it has been determined that the agency has the power of eminent domain). According to the Uniform Act, condemnation proceedings (the trigger of which is not mentioned in the act) must be conducted so that the owner does not need to initiate legal proceedings to prove the fact of the taking of the property. If the final judgment is that the agency can acquire the real property by condemnation, the agency must deposit in court an amount (in accordance with 40 U.S.C. 3114[a] to [d]) not less than the agency’s approved appraisal of the fair market value of the property or the court award of compensation. The owner must also be reimbursed for reasonable title transfer expenses including recording fees, transfer taxes, and other similar expenses; penalty costs for prepaying a preexisting mortgage; and prorated real property taxes. The owner must be reimbursed for reasonable attorney, appraisal, and engineering fees if (a) the court decides that the agency cannot acquire the property by condemnation or the agency abandons the proceedings, or (b) the owner starts legal pro- ceedings and the court awards compensation for the taking of the owner’s property. In the case of an occupied property, the agency can require an owner to surrender possession only if 90 days have passed since providing a 90-day written notice (of the date by which move is required) to the owner. 49 CFR 24 contains essentially the same provisions as the Uniform Act, except that 49 CFR 24 includes a requirement to pay title transfer expenses directly to the billing agent of the property owner whenever feasible. Condemnation proceedings typically have a major impact on real property acquisition schedules and cost. It is not unusual for condemnation proceedings to take several years and result in significant litigation costs that are significantly higher than the original appraisal value or written offer. Because of the impact on time and costs, it is common to use the possibility or risk of condemnation proceedings as a justification for administrative settlements. The typical acquisition process by condemnation includes steps such as filing in court to condemn the property, attend- ing hearings, depositing funds in court based on the court’s decision, and getting title to the property. In practice, there are substantial variations across the country. For example, in connection with the timing of certain steps, the requirement to undergo mediation, and the possibility of depositing the amount of just compensation as a mechanism to obtain title to the property (so that the project can proceed) before a trial later determines the amount of appropriate compensation.

C-13 Practices regarding the payment of attorney fees in con- demnation proceeding cases also vary from state to state. In general, if the agency loses, the state has to pay the legal fees. If the property owner loses, the owner pays his/her own legal fees. In Florida, the state pays attorney fees using a sched- ule based on a percentage of the difference between the first and second offers, as well as all reasonable costs of experts that the owner feels are necessary to establish the value of the property taken (there are no limits on these expert costs). In Colorado, the state pays for a property owner’s appraisal in addition to the agency’s appraisal. However, the property owner’s appraisal has to use the same scope of work and certi- fied appraisers. It is common for states to experience difficulty dealing with reasonable expert and attorney fees because of the lack of an appropriate definition for what constitutes rea- sonable. As a result, a property owner may hire an attorney, engineers, and other experts, in some cases resulting in fees that are much higher than the appraised value of the prop- erty. Unlimited expert fees can be an issue. Demolish and Dispose Improvements This activity involves demolishing and disposing struc- tures, buildings, and other developments that were acquired with the property but are not needed for the transportation project. Disposition of improvements is a critical activity, particularly in situations that involve environmental hazards (e.g., asbestos or lead). Nevertheless, disposition of improve- ments is frequently the responsibility of units within the agency that do not have a right-of-way function (e.g., gen- eral services or construction) and, as a result, is typically not described in relevant manuals such as right-of-way manu- als. Demolition and disposition of improvements are not addressed in the Uniform Act or 49 CFR 24. Prepare Right-of-Way Certification This activity involves preparing a certification document- ing that the required real property needed for the project has been acquired or that the acquisition will be complete by a certain date. A relocation certification, which may be pre- pared separately or combined with the certification above, also documents that all displaced persons have been relocated to decent, safe, and sanitary housing or the state has made available adequate replacement housing to them. Under some unusual circumstances, it may be possible to start con- struction when possession of a few remaining parcels is not complete but all occupants have had replacement housing made available to them. In this case, the certification must document the affected parcels and the realistic date when physical occupancy and use is anticipated to take place. An encroachment certification, which may be part of the right- of-way certification, may also be prepared to document that the right-of-way is free of unauthorized encroachments, or if they remain temporarily, they will not pose a safety or constructability conflict during construction. Owners of encroaching property must remove those encroachments from the right-of-way. Right-of-way certification require- ments are not addressed in the Uniform Act or 49 CFR 24, but they are addressed in 23 CFR 635.309. This certification is usually included in the PS&E package. Determine Relocation Assistance Eligibility This activity involves determining whether a person is eli- gible to receive relocation assistance advisory services and financial assistance. According to the Uniform Act, a displaced person is a per- son who moves from real property or moves his/her personal property from real property because of a written notice of intent to acquire or the acquisition of such property, or this person is a residential tenant or conducts a small business, a farm operation, or a business. A displaced person is also a person who moves from real property or moves his/her personal property from real property when there is a perma- nent displacement activity (e.g., rehabilitation and demoli- tion) under a program or project undertaken by an acquiring agency or with federal financial assistance. The act clarifies that a displaced person is not a person who occupies a dwell- ing unlawfully or for the purpose of obtaining relocation assistance services, or a person who rents property for a short term or occupies it for a period subject to termination before the property is needed for the project. A displaced person is eligible for relocation assistance services if he/she is lawfully present in the U.S. A displaced person who is unlawfully present in the U.S. is not eligible to receive assistance services, unless the result is exceptional and extremely unusual hardship for the displaced person’s spouse, parent, or child, who is a permanent resident or a citi- zen of the U.S. The Uniform Act does not explain the process to require persons to move if they are not eligible for assistance due to their unlawful presence in the U.S. According to the act, the acquiring agency may provide advisory services to a non- displaced person if this person occupies an adjacent property and suffers from substantial economic injury. According to the Uniform Act, determining relocation assis- tance eligibility can start early by providing a written notice of intent to acquire property. The act encourages early planning to anticipate displacements and provide for the resolution of problems to minimize adverse impacts on displaced persons and expedite project completion. However, this provision is not prescriptive with respect to timing or level of effort. 49 CFR 24 expands on the requirements in the Uniform Act for determining whether a person is a displaced person

C-14 by defining a displaced person as a person who moves from real property or moves his/her personal property as a direct result of the initiation of negotiations. 49 CFR 24 also includes requirements concerning the certification of nationality, residence, or lawful presence in the U.S. of any person seek- ing relocation assistance services; information needed if the agency believes that a person’s certification is invalid; and con- ditions that are considered to be exceptional and extremely unusual hardship to the spouse, parent, or child of a person who is not lawfully present in the United States. In addition, 49 CFR 24 provides a nonexclusive listing of persons who are not qualified as displaced persons. Provide Relocation Assistance Advisory (Residential) This activity involves providing relocation assistance advi- sory services to displaced persons in connection with resi- dential acquisitions. According to the Uniform Act, a number of services are available, including, but not limited to, the following: • Determine and make timely recommendations on needs and preferences of displaced persons for relocation assis- tance (both residential and non-residential). • Supply information about other federal and state programs and provide assistance in applying for assistance under those programs (both residential and non-residential). • Provide other services to minimize or avoid disproportion- ate hardships to displaced persons in adjusting to relocation (both residential and non-residential). • Provide information on comparable replacement dwell- ings for homeowners and tenants. • If comparable dwelling is not available, identify last-resort housing replacement and take actions as necessary to pro- vide a comparable dwelling. • Assure person is not required to move without opportu- nity to relocate to comparable replacement dwelling. • Help displaced persons understand the notices and other related documentation. In the case of residential relocations, the focus is on pro- viding sufficient relocation advisory services to minimize the hardship as a result of moving from their current residence, which includes identifying comparable replacement housing. The Uniform Act defines a comparable replacement dwell- ing to be any dwelling that complies with the following six conditions: • Decent, safe, and sanitary. • Adequate in size to accommodate the occupants. • Within the financial means of the displaced person. • Functionally equivalent. • In an area not subject to unreasonable adverse environ- mental conditions. • In a location generally not less desirable than the location of the displaced person’s dwelling with respect to public utilities, facilities, services, and the displaced person’s place of employment. In addition to the requirements included in the act, 49 CFR 24 provides the following requirements for a comparable replacement dwelling: • On a site that is typical in size for residential develop- ment with normal site improvements, including custom- ary landscaping. • Currently available to the displaced person on the private market (with some exceptions). • If a person received assistance from a government housing assistance programs, the rules of that program govern the size of the dwelling. 49 CFR 24 requires a personal interview with each dis- placed person to explain to him/her the relocation payments and other assistance for which the person may be eligible, the related eligibility requirements, and the procedures for obtaining such assistance. 49 CFR 24 provides the following list of actions that are not mentioned in the act: • As soon as feasible, inform the person in writing of the specific comparable dwelling, as well as the information and the basis used for determining the upper limit of the housing payment. • Where feasible, inspect housing prior to being made available. • Whenever possible, provide minority persons with an opportunity to relocate to decent, safe, and sanitary replace- ment dwellings that are within their financial means but not located in an area of minority concentration. • Offer all persons transportation to inspect housing to which they are referred. • Advise persons who are eligible for government housing assistance about potential requirements of the assistance program, the duration of the rental assistance payment, and the nature of such rent subsidy. Provide Relocation Assistance Advisory (Non-Residential) This activity involves providing relocation assistance advi- sory services to displaced persons in connection with non- residential acquisitions.

C-15 According to the Uniform Act, a number of services are available, including the following: • Determine and make timely recommendations on needs and preferences of displaced persons for relocation assis- tance (both residential and non-residential). • Supply information about other federal and state programs and provide assistance in applying for assistance under those programs (both residential and non-residential). • Provide other services to minimize hardships to displaced persons in adjusting to relocation (both residential and non-residential). • Provide information on suitable locations for businesses and farm operations. • Assist businesses and farm operations in obtaining and becoming established at a suitable replacement location. In addition to these requirements, 49 CFR 24 requires dis- cussing with displaced persons, at a minimum, the following items: • Replacement site requirements, lease terms, contractual obligations, and other financial considerations. • Need for outside specialists to assist before, during, and after the relocation. • Identification and resolution of personal property versus real property issues. • Estimated time to vacate the property. • Estimated difficulty in locating a replacement property. • Potential advance payments and the agency’s legal capacity to provide them. Issue Relocation Payments (Residential) This activity involves determining payment amounts and issuing payments to displaced persons in connection with residential relocations. According to the Uniform Act, eligible payments include moving expenses and expenses in connection with purchas- ing or renting a replacement dwelling, which vary depending on whether the displaced person currently owns or rents, as well as the length of time the displaced person has resided at the displaced dwelling prior to the initiation of negotiations. The act allows moving payments based on actual moving and related expenses or based on a schedule published by the U.S. DOT. In connection with purchasing or renting a replacement dwelling, in 2012 MAP-21 increased relocation payments as follows, based on recommendations from listening sessions for regulatory changes that went into effect in 2005 (5): • Maximum replacement housing payment for displaced property owners: from $22,500 to $31,000. • Maximum rental assistance payment for displaced tenants: from $5,250 to $7,200. • Authorization to adjust (by regulation) the amounts above to take into consideration cost of living, inflation, and other factors. The minimum length of time for a displaced person to reside at a displaced dwelling and qualify for relocation pay- ments is 90 days. Prior to MAP-21, there were two eligibility thresholds (90 days and 180 days). In 2012, MAP-21 elimi- nated the 180-day threshold for property owners. It is worth noting that the Uniform Act is silent on how to proceed if a homeowner resides at a displaced dwelling for at least 90 days (prior to the initiation of negotiations) and decides to rent instead of acquiring a new property. 49 CFR 24 expands upon these requirements. According to the regulations, fixed residential moving payments must fol- low the most recent edition of the Fixed Residential Moving Cost Schedule (68). The regulations also specify the conditions under which actual cost reimbursements are provided for relocating appurtenances attached to a mobile home that were not acquired and describes the methods to estimate the actual cost for moving personal property from a dwelling or from a mobile home. In addition, 49 CFR 24 clarifies that under cer- tain conditions, displaced homeowners are eligible to receive a rental assistance payment. 49 CFR 24 is also more prescrip- tive than the act on the procedure for determining replacement housing payments. Interestingly, 49 CFR 24 does not include a provision to insure the mortgage of a comparable replacement dwelling. The Uniform Act does include this option. Issue Relocation Payments (Non-Residential) This activity involves determining payment amounts and issuing payments to displaced persons in connection with non-residential relocations. According to the Uniform Act, two options are possible for payments: (a) reimbursement of actual reasonable moving and related expenses, or (b) a fixed payment. The act allows four types of moving expenses: actual reasonable moving expenses, actual direct losses of tangible personal property (not to exceed the amount that would be required to relocate this property), actual reasonable expenses while searching for a replacement business or farm location, and actual reason- able expenses to reestablish operations at the new site. Which of these moving expenses are eligible depends on whether the relocation involves a small business, a non-small business, a farm operation, or a non-profit organization (Table C-1). In 2012, MAP-21 increased the maximum reestablishment pay- ment from $10,000 to $25,000 and indicated that this upper limit could be adjusted through regulation.

C-16 The fixed payment option in lieu of payments for actual expenses is possible if the sole business at the displacement dwelling is not the rental of the dwelling to others. The amount is based on criteria established by the U.S. DOT and can range from $1,000 to $40,000, adjustable by regula- tion. (Note: In 2012, MAP-21 increased the upper limit from $20,000 to $40,000.) 49 CFR Part 24 further expands upon these requirements, providing additional detailed information about relocation expenses that are eligible for reimbursement as well as reloca- tion expenses that are ineligible for reimbursement. 49 CFR 24 also describes the methods to estimate the cost of moving personal property from a business, a farm, or a non-profit organization, as well as related eligible expenses (e.g., estab- lishing connections to nearby utilities, certain professional services, and impact fees or assessments for anticipated heavy utility usage. Examples of ineligible reestablishment expenses include purchase of capital assets, interest on money bor- rowed to move, and payment to a part-time business that does not contribute materially to the household income. 49 CFR 24 also includes a series of factors that an agency must take into account for determining whether two or more displaced entities constitute a single business that would be entitled to one fixed payment. Separate eligibility criteria are also included in the regulations for displaced farm operations and non-profit organizations. Property Management The purpose of this pool of activities is to manage real property for as long as the agency holds those property inter- ests. Property management is a continuous activity that spans complete property lifecycles. Property management func- tions are typically divided among several areas of responsi- bility within a state DOT. Examples include: • Right-of-way or real estate. This area of responsibility usually covers the inventory and management of real prop- erty interests the state DOT has both inside and outside of the right-of-way, renting or leasing real property interests, and disposal of real property. • Maintenance. This area of responsibility usually covers maintenance and physical protection of real property, access management (including control of access and driveway permits), and accommodation of other facilities (including utility facilities). • Finance. This area of responsibility usually covers asset valu- ation analyses such as those conducted to address GASB-34 requirements on the value of infrastructure assets (69). • Finance and planning. This area of responsibility usually covers lifecycle analyses that result in the identification and documentation of transportation project needs. Of interest in this report are property management activi- ties that typically involve right-of-way personnel (i.e., inven- tory and management of real property, renting or leasing of acquired real property, and disposal of real property). At most agencies, right-of-way personnel are not involved in functions that deal with the physical maintenance of the real property, financial reporting, or lifecycle analyses. Inventory and Manage Property Interests This ongoing activity involves conducting and maintaining an inventory of property interests as well as managing those interests. The inventory of real property includes not just an inventory of real property but also improvements as well as other items such as machinery and equipment. Management of the property assets also includes maintaining account- ing records of receipts and expenses in connection with lease or rental agreements and disposal of acquired real property and related improvements. Examples of real property inter- ests include property held in fee simple (or with some of the rights separated [e.g., mineral rights]), easements of various kinds (e.g., drainage, environmental, utility), leases, licenses, and joint use agreements. Although state DOTs typically do not own outdoor adver- tising signs or junkyards, they are responsible for enforcing highway beautification rules and regulations in accordance with the Highway Beautification Act (HBA), as codified in 23 U.S.C. 13, and state laws. The topic of outdoor advertising and junkyard control is outside the scope of this report. Addi- Non-Residential Relocation Relocation Expense Actual Moving Expenses Loss of Tangible Personal Property Searching for Replacement Business or Farm Expenses to Reestablish Operations Small Business Non-Small Business Farm Non-Profit Organization Table C-1. Types of relocation expenses for non-residential relocations according to the Uniform Act.

C-17 tional information about rules, guidance, recent research, and best practices is available elsewhere (70, 71). Lease Property Interests This activity involves leasing real property to others. Exam- ples include leases (including the airspace above as well as space at or below grade), leasebacks (i.e., leases for recently acquired real property back to the owner or tenant who occu- pied the property at the time of the acquisition), and office space leases. This general category could also include the man- agement of mineral rights, depending on the legal framework and authority to manage these property interests. The abil- ity of a state DOT to lease real property is heavily regulated. For example, leases must normally be at least at the appraised fair market rental value (although there may be exceptions for social, economic, or environmental reasons). It is also com- mon to require that a property be classified as surplus to the state needs during the term of the lease, or that leasing revenue can only be used for eligible activities under the federal-aid highway program. Prior FHWA approval is normally required for leasing real property on interstate highways. Dispose Property Interests This activity involves the disposal of real property that is no longer needed for transportation purposes. It also involves disposing non-right-of-way real property. Depending on the situation, disposal of the real property could be to an LPA, an adjoining landowner, or a fee owner (e.g., if the state DOT owned a highway or drainage easement). This activity could also include exchanging real property that is no longer needed with real property that is needed for transportation purposes. Utility Conflict Analysis, Permits, Relocation, and Reimbursement The purpose of this pool of activities is to identify util- ity facilities within the project limits; identify, manage, and resolve utility conflicts; coordinate with stakeholders; develop and execute utility agreements; coordinate and inspect utility relocations; and coordinate utility reimbursement payments and audits. The Uniform Act includes provisions for reimbursing util- ity owners for the relocation of their facilities as part of a trans- portation project. Conditions for eligibility include that the purpose of the relocation should not be to relocate or recon- struct a utility facility, there is an existing agreement between the agency and the utility owner with respect to the use of the right-of-way, and the utility owner incurs extraordinary costs in connection with the relocation. The act defines an extra- ordinary cost to be a cost incurred by the utility owner that (a) is a non-routine relocation expense, (b) is not included in its annual operating budget, and (c) meets other regula- tory requirements. The act also requires that the relocation payment should not exceed the amount of such extraordinary cost, less any increase in the value of the new utility facility above that of the old utility facility (i.e., betterment) and less any salvage value derived from the old utility facility. Requirements that apply to federal-aid projects regard- ing the accommodation and relocation of utility facilities are described in 23 CFR 645. State rules and guidelines prescribe minimums relative to the accommodation, location, installa- tion, adjustment, and maintenance of utility facilities on the state right-of-way. Many of these state rules and guidelines are based on model policies and guides developed by AASHTO (72, 73). Additional information about the utility coordina- tion process, including the identification and resolution of utility conflicts, is available elsewhere (74). A number of approaches exist to plan and manage utility relocations. In the traditional approach, the transportation agency coordinates relocation activities with utility owners. However, it is also possible for an LPA or another third party to assume responsibility for the coordination of the utility relocation process. Depending on the type of project, type of installation, and other considerations, utility facilities can be relocated on the state right-of-way or be required to find a corridor elsewhere. Utility owners are usually responsible for acquiring their own easements or other real property when moving their facilities outside the state right-of-way. How- ever, if there is a prior right, the utility relocation is normally reimbursable. It is common for utility relocations to require the acquisition of easements, particularly if the relocated util- ity facility cannot be accommodated within the new right-of- way. Some state DOTs have the authority to acquire property on behalf of utility owners. For example, the Florida DOT has the authority to purchase property on behalf of utility owners, provided there is an agreement with the affected utility owners. Wisconsin has a similar rule. Wisconsin can also execute a common use agreement to perpetuate previous utility owner rights after their facilities are relocated within the state right-of-way. This agreement avoids typical prob- lems that arise with easements. Collecting accurate utility data from utility owners can be challenging. Typically, agencies send project drawings to util- ities with a request to mark up those drawings with relevant utility information. In some cases, utility owners request elec- tronic copies of those drawings in CAD format. Sometimes, utility owners provide electronic as-builts. However, avail- able as-builts are rarely scaled or georeferenced and come in a variety of formats, making it necessary to convert the files to a usable format and adjust their scale and alignment to match the underlying project files. Questions about the com- pleteness and quality of existing utility as-builts prompted

C-18 the emergence of the national standard guideline, American Society of Civil Engineers/Construction Institute (ASCE/CI) 38-02 (74). This standard guideline outlines typical activities in connection with the collection and depiction of utility data and describes a quality level (QL) attribute for individual utility features identified, as follows: • QLD involves collecting data from existing records or oral recollections. • QLC involves surveying and plotting visible utility appur- tenances (e.g., valve covers, junction boxes, and manhole covers) and making inferences about underground linear utility facilities that connect those appurtenances. • QLB involves the use of surface geophysical methods to determine the approximate horizontal position of subsur- face utilities. • QLA involves the determination of accurate horizontal and vertical utility locations by exposing underground utility facilities at certain locations. Provide Planning and Utility Process Linkages This activity involves conducting a high-level assessment of major utility facilities that might be affected by the pro- posed project and facilitating the transition of activities and decisions that pertain to utility impacts to the environmen- tal review, the process to acquire real property for the proj- ect, and the utility coordination process. This activity takes place during the planning and programming phase, typi- cally after transportation plans have been developed and project requirements, studies, and cost estimates are under development. It is usually not mandatory but is highly rec- ommended to help identify major utility issues early in the process. Conduct Coordination Meetings This activity involves scheduling and conducting agency- level and/or district-level coordination meetings with utility owners. The purpose of these meetings is to provide a forum for discussing upcoming highway construction projects with utility owners, therefore enabling these owners to conduct early fiscal planning and anticipate budget cycle impacts, construction schedules, and consumer service requirements that might be affected by those highway projects. The list of anticipated highway projects should be made available to utility owners prior to those meetings. At this level, master agreements and MOUs can be particularly helpful to develop partnering relationships between the agency and utility own- ers to promote the goals of collaboration and coordination among stakeholders. Conduct Preliminary Utility Investigations This activity involves collecting data from existing records, field visits, or oral recollections and conducting a prelimi- nary assessment of utility impacts on the project. It includes requesting that utility owners provide information about existing installations within the project limits. Typically, the agency sends project drawings to utility owners with a request to mark up those drawings with relevant utility infor- mation. Collecting preliminary utility data may also include contacting a one-call notification center to request that util- ity owners locate and mark existing facilities on the ground. Although it is common to collect this type of information at the beginning of the design phase, it is increasingly com- mon to complete this activity in conjunction with other data collection activities while developing alternative alignments at the beginning of the preliminary design phase. Collecting preliminary utility information is a routine activity, but certi- fying the corresponding utility data as QLD is more rigorous than traditional practice and is not as common. After collecting preliminary utility data, agencies conduct an initial assessment of utility impacts, which can result in the first version of a utility conflict table or matrix. The outcome of this activity is an early assessment of utility facilities that potentially need to be adjusted or a determination that addi- tional information is needed. Survey Visible Utility Appurtenances and Assess Impact This activity involves surveying visible utility facilities, such as manholes, valve boxes, and posts; correlating this information with existing utility records; and making infer- ences about underground linear utility facilities that con- nect those appurtenances. This level of utility investigation typically occurs early in the design phase in conjunction with other data collection activities needed for the production of 30 percent design plans. As with preliminary utility investiga- tions, surveying visible utility facilities is routine, although certifying the corresponding utility data as QLC is more rig- orous than traditional practice and is not as common. After surveying visible above-ground utility facilities, agen- cies conduct an assessment of utility impacts, which can result in a new or updated utility conflict matrix. Conduct Detailed Utility Investigations This activity involves using surface, non-invasive geophysi- cal methods to determine the approximate horizontal location of underground utility installations and/or exposing utility facilities at critical locations (e.g., using vacuum excavation) to survey the horizontal and vertical location of the facilities

C-19 at those locations. When used, detailed utility investigations typically occur after the 30 percent design stage if it is critical to obtain more complete, accurate information about under- ground utility facilities. After collecting non-invasive geophys- ical data and/or exposing existing facilities at critical locations, agencies conduct an assessment of utility impacts, which can result in a new or updated utility conflict matrix. Using geophysical methods to assist in the depiction of underground utility facilities is increasing if it is critical to obtain more complete, accurate information about under- ground utility facilities. QLB data collection is still not very common, for reasons that range from data collection costs to lack of knowledge about the benefits that better utility facility data can offer in the form of lower project costs or decrease or elimination of utility conflicts, particularly dur- ing construction. The purpose of exposing utility facilities at critical loca- tions is to obtain location information to a level of accu- racy (i.e., QLA) which is sufficient for developing plans and profiles and making final design decisions. Some states use vacuum excavation to expose utility facilities and survey the horizontal and vertical location of the facilities at those loca- tions but do not certify the resulting data as QLA. Coordinate Utility Relocation Design with Utility Owners This activity involves coordinating with utility owners in all aspects leading to the identification and design of util- ity conflict resolution measures. It also involves providing a notification to utility owners when relocating one or more of their facilities is necessary for the transportation project, and includes provisions such as required documentation from both parties and dates by which critical milestones must be complete. Utility owners are typically responsible for the design to relocate utility facilities that are in conflict with the project or other facilities. However, it is the utility coordina- tor’s responsibility to ensure that lines of communication between utility and transportation project designers are open, design documents are exchanged quickly and efficiently, coor- dination meetings are scheduled and conducted, and agree- ment documents are processed in a timely manner. Utility coordination activities also involve LPAs in cases where LPAs are responsible for coordinating utility relocations with utility owners. Under certain conditions, it may be possible to obtain an early authorization to conduct utility work to enable the agency to incur certain costs before the normal authoriza- tion to acquire real property or prior to the completion of the environmental document. Examples of activities that may be allowed include engineering, prefabrication of materials, and acquisition of easements, i.e., activities that do not involve excavation or disturbance of the soil. An early authorization to conduct utility work requires the final geometric sche- matic to be complete. Prepare and Execute Utility Agreements This activity involves preparing and executing agreements with utility owners, typically for the relocation of utility facili- ties that are eligible for reimbursement. For non-reimbursable utility relocations, it is also possible to execute agreements. However, it is more common to use existing utility permit- ting procedures. Utility agreements outline the conditions that govern the accommodation of utility facilities within the state right-of-way and specify each party’s rights, responsibilities, and timelines with regard to required utility relocations, as well as procedures that apply if an agreement to relocate is not reached. Utility agreements typically include standard agree- ment forms and attachments, utility relocation plans, cost estimates, and other supporting documentation. Utility agreements can be executed as soon as the method of utility conflict resolution has been identified, typically after 60 percent design (when critical project design elements such as drainage have been substantially completed). However, executing utility agreements earlier is encouraged whenever possible. A goal at most state DOTs is to execute all utility agreements by the time the project design is complete. Monitor Utility Relocations and Reimburse Utility Owners This activity involves monitoring and inspecting the prog- ress of utility relocations in the field and processing requests for eligible reimbursable items from utility owners. Utility relocation costs are typically classified as project right-of-way costs. A goal at most state DOTs is to have utility relocations completed by the time the project design is complete (or by letting date). However, it is common to have pending utility relocation items at the beginning of construction. Utility relocation items are frequently included in the highway contract (e.g., in the case of water or sanitary sewer lines, duct banks, manholes, and junction boxes). If the items are not reimbursable, it is common to request advance pay- ment from the utility owners so that the state DOT can pay the highway contractor for the utility relocation items. Prepare Utility Certification This activity involves preparing a utility certification for inclusion in the PS&E package, which documents either that the utility coordination and relocation process has been final- ized or that there are pending utility relocations. Frequently, state DOTs provide additional information such as utility

C-20 conflict location and status as well as utility owner contact information. Utility certification requirements are addressed in 23 CFR 635.309. Letting The purpose of this pool of activities is to process the PS&E package, advertise the project for construction bids, receive contractor bids, evaluate offers (which includes activities such as detecting collusion and comparing bids against the engineer’s estimate), select the winning bid, award the con- tract, notify the public in advance of construction, and store and retain project records. Letting could also include pre-bid meetings to provide specific project information, explain any unusual aspects of the project, and address potential bidder questions. Let Project This activity involves scheduling and completing all the nec- essary steps to select the contractor for the project. Steps usually include advertising the project for construction bids, receiving contractor bids, evaluating the offers (including items such as detecting collusion and comparing bids against the engineer’s estimate), selecting the winning bid, awarding the contract, notifying the public in advance of construction, and storing and retaining project records. One or more pre-bid confer- ences may be necessary to provide specific project information to bidders and address bidder questions. Construction The purpose of this pool of activities is to build and deliver the project to the agency. Examples of activities include: • Schedule regular construction meetings, including a pre- construction meeting to establish working relationships; determine the responsibilities of contractors, subcontrac- tors, and agency personnel; and agree on detailed arrange- ments for the completion of the contract. • Inspect the construction site to determine if the contractor’s performance follows the construction contract. Inspections include identification of defective and unauthorized work. • Maintain project records such as progress schedules, proj- ect diaries, materials received, temporary suspension or resumption work notices, working day charges, contractor labor payrolls, and change orders. • Monitor and respond to contractor requests for information. • Manage the review and approval of potential project change orders. Change orders can have real property impacts if the change requires acquisition of additional real property or makes some previously acquired property unnecessary. • Communicate and coordinate with affected stake holders, including property owners who are adjacent to the project site. This activity also has right-of-way function implications. • Prepare as-builts. • Deliver project to agency. Conduct Preconstruction Meeting This activity involves scheduling and conducting a pre- construction meeting with the selected contractor after the agency has awarded the contract and a notice to proceed has been issued. The purpose of the meeting is to establish lines of authority and communication; determine the respon- sibilities and duties of contractor’s personnel, subcontrac- tors, and department personnel; clarify potential sources of misunderstanding; and work out the detailed arrangements necessary for the successful completion of the contract. In addition to agency and contractor personnel, attendees might include utility owners and resource agencies (e.g., if the proj- ect includes conditional permits that require resource agency notification). Depending on the project, participants might also include news media, LPAs, and emergency services such as fire departments and law enforcement. Build and Deliver Project This activity involves all the necessary activities to build and deliver the project. In addition to the activities men- tioned above, examples of typical construction-level activities include: • Conduct construction activities. • Inspect the construction site to determine if the contrac- tor’s performance follows the construction contract. • Maintain project records such as progress schedules, proj- ect diaries, materials received, temporary suspension or resumption work notices, working day charges, contractor labor payrolls, and change orders. • Monitor and respond to contractor requests for information. • Manage the review and approval of potential project change orders. • Communicate and coordinate with affected stakeholders, including property owners who are adjacent to the proj- ect site. • Deliver project and prepare as-builts. Project Management The purpose of this pool of activities is to manage the proj- ect throughout its lifecycle (i.e., from the time the project was identified during planning and programming to the comple- tion of the construction phase and finalization of all the proj- ect closeout activities).

C-21 Establish Project Management Team This activity involves establishing a project management team by identifying key project team members from various disciplines, including a representative from the right-of-way unit. It is recommended that this team be formed early in the project development process and remain in place throughout the project lifecycle (i.e., from “cradle to grave”) to provide coordination and direction to project efforts. The project management team also acts as a point of continuity as the project proceeds across the various project phases and dif- ferent team members join the project. The project manage- ment team is responsible for providing overall guidance and direction to the project and for facilitating key project deci- sions. The members of the project management team are also responsible for ensuring that the appropriate resources from the different disciplines are available and engaged on the project when needed. This team would also be responsible for monitoring and facilitating resolution of issues that are multidisciplinary in nature. Manage Project Development and Delivery Process This activity involves ongoing engagement and partici- pation in project activities throughout the project lifecycle, including required support during the construction and post- construction phases until the project has been closed out. From a right-of-way perspective, this activity requires everyone from the right-of-way representative to the project manage- ment team to remain actively involved in the project through participation in project status meetings and other appropri- ate meetings and review sessions, to be available as needed to construction staff on an advisory basis, and to engage other right-of-way staff to work on the project as needed.

Abbreviations and acronyms used without definitions in TRB publications: A4A Airlines for America AAAE American Association of Airport Executives AASHO American Association of State Highway Officials AASHTO American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials ACI–NA Airports Council International–North America ACRP Airport Cooperative Research Program ADA Americans with Disabilities Act APTA American Public Transportation Association ASCE American Society of Civil Engineers ASME American Society of Mechanical Engineers ASTM American Society for Testing and Materials ATA American Trucking Associations CTAA Community Transportation Association of America CTBSSP Commercial Truck and Bus Safety Synthesis Program DHS Department of Homeland Security DOE Department of Energy EPA Environmental Protection Agency FAA Federal Aviation Administration FHWA Federal Highway Administration FMCSA Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration FRA Federal Railroad Administration FTA Federal Transit Administration HMCRP Hazardous Materials Cooperative Research Program IEEE Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers ISTEA Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 ITE Institute of Transportation Engineers MAP-21 Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (2012) NASA National Aeronautics and Space Administration NASAO National Association of State Aviation Officials NCFRP National Cooperative Freight Research Program NCHRP National Cooperative Highway Research Program NHTSA National Highway Traffic Safety Administration NTSB National Transportation Safety Board PHMSA Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration RITA Research and Innovative Technology Administration SAE Society of Automotive Engineers SAFETEA-LU Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (2005) TCRP Transit Cooperative Research Program TEA-21 Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (1998) TRB Transportation Research Board TSA Transportation Security Administration U.S.DOT United States Department of Transportation

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TRB’s National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) Report 771: Strategies to Optimize Real Property Acquisition, Relocation Assistance, and Property Management Practices provides improved, integrated real property procedures and business practices in the project development and delivery process. The report also provides suggestions to improve property management practices. The report is accompanied by a CD-ROM that contains an integrated model of the transportation project development and delivery process, including a real property acquisition and relocation assistance model and reference work schedule.

The CD-ROM is also available for download from TRB’s website as an ISO image. Links to the ISO image and instructions for burning a CD-ROM from an ISO image are provided below.

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CD-ROM Disclaimer - This software is offered as is, without warranty or promise of support of any kind either expressed or implied. Under no circumstance will the National Academy of Sciences or the Transportation Research Board (collectively "TRB") be liable for any loss or damage caused by the installation or operation of this product. TRB makes no representation or warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, in fact or in law, including without limitation, the warranty of merchantability or the warranty of fitness for a particular purpose, and shall not in any case be liable for any consequential or special damages.

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