Applications currently being accepted
SJTPO works collaboratively with state and local agencies to address identified safety concerns within the SJTPO region, with funding through the federal Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP). The purpose of the HSIP is to achieve a significant reduction in fatalities and serious injuries on all public roads through a data-driven, strategic approach to improving highway safety. This includes roadways on and off the federal aid system, regardless of ownership.
Applying for funding through SJTPO’s Local Safety Program requires applicants to follow an intuitive five-step, data driven process. The Project Application and Program Guidance document directs applicants through that process.
The current transportation reauthorization bill places greater emphasis on performance measurement and project evaluation. The HSIP is on the leading edge in addressing this demand. To ensure the spirit of federal guidance is satisfied and that projects chosen are truly worthy investments, data drives the SJTPO Local Safety Program project development process in every step. Local Safety Program funding may be used for all project phases, including Preliminary Engineering (PE) and Final Design (FD), Right-of-Way (ROW) acquisition, Construction (CON), and Construction Inspection (CI). Design Assistance, inclusive of Preliminary Engineering (PE) and Final Design (FD) is being offered by SJTPO for safety projects.
The Application Process
SJTPO now utilizes the statewide application and application process. The application package includes a Phase 1 application, which must be completed for SJTPO by September, a Phase 2 application, which must be completed by the following June, and guidance and supporting materials to assist in completing the application.
- June (Year 1) – Request to SJTPO for Crash Data, Analysis, and Diagrams
- September – Phase 1 Application Due to SJTPO
- December – Phase 1 Updated Application Due to NJDOT
- March (Year 2) – NJDOT Feedback on Phase 1 Application Due to SJTPO/Applicant
- May – Response/Updates to Phase 1 Application and Phase 2 Application Due to SJTPO
- June – SJTPO Submits Response/Update to Phase 1 Application and Phase 2 Application to Technical Review Committee (TRC)
- September – Review, Scoring, and Notes from TRC Due
- October – Applicant/SJTPO Response to TRC Comments Due
- November – TRC Meets and Makes Final Recommendations
- January (Year 3) – SJTPO TAC Consideration/Endorsement of Final Recommendations
- January – SJTPO Policy Board Consideration/Approval of Final Recommendations
In an effort to remove a common barrier to submitting safety projects for consideration, SJTPO is offering design assistance, which can include Preliminary Engineering (PE) and Final Design (FD). SJTPO will serve as the Project Manager for consultant-led design services after projects are selected and approved for Local Safety Program funding. Applicants can request assistance by checking a box as part of their Local Safety Program application.
Project locations must generally be selected in one of two ways: using the “hot spot” approach, by selecting a location from one of five network screening, or “hot spot” lists, or using the systemic approach, based on the geometric traits of a series of locations. SJTPO works to incorporate safety improvements based on both the hot spot and systemic approaches.
Hot Spot Approach (Network Screening Lists): To apply for a project at a hot spot location, applicants must generally select locations from one of the Network Screening Lists developed for each county, below. Five different sets of network screening lists were developed for the SJTPO region on behalf of the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT). The five sets of lists represent 1.) all crash types along roadway corridors, 2.) all crash types at intersections, 3.) bicycle and pedestrian crashes at intersections 4.) bicycle and pedestrian crashes along corridors, and 5.) all crash types on high-risk rural roadways.
If a roadway owner believes that a location should qualify to be on one of these lists, either due to possible errors in the crash data or based on more recent crash history, they can reach out to SJTPO, who can assist with data analysis. It is important to note that the presence of a location on one of these lists does not necessarily mean a project will qualify for HSIP funding. Given the need to satisfy Highway Safety Manual and Benefit-Costs analyses for many project types, there must be a sufficient crash trend to justify the expenditure of limited safety dollars. Jurisdictions looking at locations with very few crashes should consider addressing the safety issues during regular repaving or through other funding programs. HSIP funds should generally be considered for locations with the most significant safety issues. For questions about a potential project location, please contact Alan Huff at firstname.lastname@example.org prior to developing application materials.
Roadway Corridor Lists
Pedestrian/Bicycle Intersection Lists
Pedestrian/Bicycle Corridor Lists
High Risk Rural Roads (HRRR) Lists
Systemic Approach: An alternative and complementary approach to the traditional site analysis is the systemic approach to safety, which takes a broader view and looks at risk across an entire roadway system rather than managing risk at certain locations. This approach provides a more comprehensive method for safety planning and implementation. Local safety projects are designed to improve safety by minimizing or eliminating risk to roadway users.
Centerline Rumble Strips: Installation of a centerline rumble strips are one of the proven countermeasures that reduce the risks of cross centerline crashes and is a good example of a systemic approach to safety. To help promote the installation of this safety improvement in the SJTPO region a candidate list of centerline rumble strip locations was compiled with the assistance of the New Jersey Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Safety, Bicycle, and Pedestrian Programs. Minimum lane width, shoulder width, and posted speed limit were used as variables in the screening lists for centerline rumble strips.
Roadways Eligible for Systemic Centerline Rumble Strip Application
Safety Treatments at Horizontal Curves: Horizontal curves often present risks to roadway users and offer opportunities to make systemic safety improvements to the roadway network. SJTPO, in partnership with the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission (DVRPC), recently conducted a Regional Curve Inventory and Safety Assessment that looked at curves in the SJTPO and DVRPC regions to identify crash patterns to assess risk as well as opportunities for systemic safety improvements. These improvements can include a wide range of improvements from enhanced signage and striping to High Friction Surface Treatment (HFST) and a variety of other countermeasures. Safety improvements and locations identified from that effort are highly encouraged.
More information related to the systemic approach can be found on FHWA’s Safety website. This method looks at geometric characteristics of a series of roadways in a larger area that are statistically tied to crashes. A balanced safety program includes projects at both hot spot locations as well as a systemic application of a treatment.
This step provides an understanding of the crash patterns and examines the geometric and physical characteristics of the location, providing a diagnosis of the location. Whereas, the network screening provides a broad look at the number of crashes, the crash analysis in this step should investigate the types of crashes and circumstances around the crash history to identify patterns. These patterns will provide additional details related to the cause of the crashes and help diagnose the safety concern, leading to an improvement that will directly link to the problem at the location. It is not enough to select a location from the Network Screening lists; having a good location does not directly translate into a good project. However, proper diagnosis of the problem can help to identify a good project.
Applicants must include a full three-year crash history of the location in Excel format – five years for bicycle and pedestrian safety projects. Applicants are highly encouraged to contact SJTPO prior to collecting crash history.
Road Safety Audits (RSAs): RSAs are not required for Local Safety Program submission but are an important tool in advancing quality safety projects and can be a valuable component in SJTPO’s data-driven approach. Once a project location has been identified from the Network Screening lists (Step 1), the site analysis in an RSA can be utilized in problem identification (Step 2) and countermeasure selection (Step 3). As a result, locations from the network screening where an RSA has occurred are likely excellent locations to pursue for local safety funding.
RSA Reports, by County
Cape May County
The selection of an appropriate countermeasure is a key step in the process which addresses the problems identified at the location. For locations selected based on Network Screening locations, countermeasure(s) must address the type(s) of crash(es) at the particular location on the Network Screening list. For a systemic approach, countermeasures must address the geometric trait(s) related to a specific crash type. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has studied and identified twenty safety countermeasures that are statistically proven to address specific crash types. These should be considered in all HSIP projects.
FHWA Proven Safety Countermeasures:
- Backplates with Retroreflective Borders
- Corridor Access Management
- Dedicated Left- and Right-Turn Lanes at Intersections
- Reduced Left-Turn Conflict Intersections
- Systemic Application of Multiple Low-Cost Countermeasures at Stop-Controlled Intersections
- Yellow Change Intervals
It is not enough to simply have a location with a crash history and apply the correct countermeasures. Projects must also provide a benefit exceeding their cost of construction. Doing so ensures that the project is a good use of limited tax-payer dollars and enables a fair comparison against other projects to ensure the most beneficial projects are selected. To this end, all projects must include an estimate of cost and additional information (Appendix A) that SJTPO will utilize to perform a Highway Safety Manual (HSM) analysis. This analysis will be utilized to determine the safety benefits of the entire project. This step in the process is not applicable to systemic applications and is optional for bicycle and pedestrian projects.
The final step in SJTPO’s data-driven Local Safety Program project selection process is a review by a Technical Review Committee (TRC), comprised of SJTPO staff and NJDOT staff, including Local Aid, Division of Environmental Resources, and Bureau of Safety, Bicycle, and Pedestrian Programs. Members of the TRC evaluate the projects to determine if the proposed improvements address the identified problems and would be a good use of local safety dollars. In addition, the TRC assesses whether the project is “shovel ready” and can be constructed within the short necessary timeline and determine if there are any “fatal flaws” that may require delaying the project until a later year, such as ROW acquisition or unaddressed environmental concerns.
APPLYING FOR HSIP FUNDS
All applications must be submitted digitally. For large files, please send via FTP site, email email@example.com to gain access to SJTPO’s FTP site, or submit a CD or DVD to the address below. Applications require multiple attachment files. For applicants submitting more than one application, each application with ALL of its required attachments should be contained in its own separate folder, named for that project.
South Jersey Transportation Planning Organization
817 East Landis Avenue, 2nd Floor Vineland, New Jersey 08360
Attn: Alan Huff