RSG Senior Director Steve Lawson was asked to present recently at the New Hampshire State Park Managers Meeting in Pembroke, NH. His presentation shared the framework for managing visitor use and capacities at parks and how to apply this information to address issues like overcrowding, resource impacts, and risk management within public lands. The meeting, held annually in New Hampshire, draws in park managers, park directors, and district supervisors from across the state.
Learn more about our work on public lands in our latest summary report for the National Park Service and Department of the Interior.
Last month, RSG Senior Director Bob Chamberlin and Consultant Austin Feula presented at the 2019 Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) Annual Conference. The conference, held over three days in Sandy, UT, was projected to draw in approximately 2,300 attendees.
Bob shared findings on the impact of shared autonomous vehicles on vehicle miles traveled (VMT) in Utah—research RSG completed in collaboration with the University of Utah. The research concluded that this disruptive technology would result in a 1-7% increase in trip making and a 4-9% increase in VMT. Austin’s presentation was on RSG’s work with the UDOT traffic studies process. He shared an update on the Traffic Study Support program—including the streamlined process, updated guidelines, and expanded scope of studies performed since its inception in 2013.
While on a U.S. Department of State-sponsored trip to Nepal, RSG’s parks and protected lands expert Steve Lawson was interviewed by Annapurna FM Radio and Kathmandu Press. He, along with Penn State University’s Peter Newman, explained that while “building infrastructure is important for tourism promotion… Nepal needs to do it responsibly taking into consideration its fragile ecosystem, and possible impacts of overtourism on local communities, culture and the environment.”
RSG Sr. Director Steve Lawson is in Nepal this week, sponsored by the US State Department. In addition to presenting at three Nepali universities, he is meeting with officials from several government agencies and commercial tourism and trekking enterprises – including Nepal’s Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation; Tourism Board; and Ministry of Culture, Tourism, and Civil Aviation – to discuss sustainable tourism and visitor use management, including visitor use, crowding, and safety on Mt. Everest.
Yesterday, RSG Director Erica Wygonik presented at the Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) September ‘Talking Freight’ seminar on drones. She provided an overview of the relative strengths and weaknesses of delivery drones as a freight transportation mode compared to other long-established or emerging freight transport methods.
FHWA hosts the ‘Talking Freight’ seminars as part of a broader program aimed at providing technical assistance, training, tools, and information to help the freight and planning workforce meet the transportation challenges of tomorrow.
RSG Director Steven Gayle attended and presented earlier this week at the ITE New York Upstate Section Annual Meeting in Buffalo, NY.
On Tuesday, he led a roundtable discussion where representatives of other professional associations, including American Planning Association, American Public Works Association, American Society of Civil Engineers, American Society of Highway Engineers, and the Congress for New Urbanism, discussed their organization’s response to 21st century transportation challenges. Yesterday, Steve gave a presentation on planning for future mobility, including sharing RSG’s proposed future mobility planning process for metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) and cities.
Today, the City of Burlington, VT is to release their ‘Net Zero Energy Roadmap,’ with transportation elements led by RSG. In addition to providing new economic and environmental analyses across the electric, thermal, and ground transportation sectors in the city, the roadmap will explain how Burlington can achieve one of the most ambitious local climate goals in the country and share new initiatives for support.
Racial and ethnic minorities have traditionally been underrepresented and underserved in outdoor recreation areas. RSG’s Molly Ryan, Steve Lawson, and Abbie Larkin examined this issue alongside the National Park Service’s Steven Roberts and David Pettebone in the Journal of Park and Recreation Administration.
Their article, with research from the Castillo de San Marcos National Monument (CASA) in Florida, demonstrates how culturally competent focus groups can be used to engage minority communities in local national park units. By incorporating elements of cultural competence through focus group design, recruitment and retention, and conduct, and by making genuine attempts to incorporate community representation into park planning and decision-making, park managers can better engage and build long-term relationships with underrepresented communities.
RSG CEO Stephen Lawe is featured on the cover of Vermont Business Magazine’s August issue. The cover story highlights RSG’s evolution and how we are shaping the future.
As autonomous vehicle (AV) technology advances closer to our everyday reality, transportation planning organizations across the US are collecting data about residents’ attitudes toward these new technologies to inform long-range planning. The North Florida Transportation Planning Organization (Jacksonville, FL region) conducted two surveys in 2017-2018 that collected attitudinal AV data from a combined 10,121 respondents. RSG’s Michelle Lee and Abigail Rosenson will share the results of those findings, particularly as they relate to resident demographics, at the Automated Vehicles Symposium, from July 15-18 in Orlando, Florida.
The event convenes industry, government, and academia from around the world to address complex technology, operations, and policy issues. Sponsored by the Transportation Research Board (TRB) and the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI), the Automated Vehicles Symposium is the largest dedicated automated vehicles meeting in the world.