In accordance with its founding document, the Hampton Roads Transportation Operations (HRTO) subcommittee—a group of operations professionals who meet to share best practices and to advice the HRTPO board’s Transportation Technical Advisory Committee (TTAC) on operational issues—elected new leadership at the Dec. 14, 2010 HRTO meeting. The committee elected Dan Rydzewski (Norfolk) as Chair and Frank Hickman (Va. Beach) as Vice-Chair, each for two-year terms. Dan is Program Manager of Norfolk’s Smart Traffic Center, and Frank is Traffic Management Operations Division Manager for Virginia Beach.
Robert Lewis, Suffolk’s Acting Assistant Director of Public Works for Operations, led HRTO during 2009 and 2010. During that time:
• “Triumphs and Trials” presentations were made at most meetings, in which one city’s representative shared successes and struggles in their transportation operations efforts.
• Information on best practices were shared, including:
o Red-light photo enforcement
o Real-time diversion of traffic in response to incidents
o Bridge deck temperature probes
• Information on operational tools were shared, including:
o Virginia Interoperability Picture for Emergency Response (VIPER)
o Real-Time Incident Management Information System (RTIMIS)
o Cityworks software
• TTAC designated HRTO as an official subcommittee.
• HRTO opened its meetings to the public and published its proceedings on HRTPO’s website.
• In response to heavy congestion resulting from the simultaneous closure of the Gilmerton Bridge and the Downtown Tunnel on October 3, 2009, VDOT and HRTO established a “Regional System of City-Maintained Highways for which Cities will Routinely Notify VDOT of Planned Closures”.
• HRTO prepared two projects as candidates for HRTPO’s allocation of Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) funds. One of the projects—total stations to be used by Va. State Police for faster documentation of fatal accidents—was funded.
• HRTPO staff tested improvements to VDOT’s Hurricane Lane Reversal Plan, and HRTO recommended changes to that plan based on the analysis.
• HRTO updated Hampton Roads’ ITS Project Inventory.
• HRTO scored VDOT’s candidate Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) projects, and prepared a prioritized list of same for VDOT.
HRTPO staff looks forward to a productive 2011 and 2012 for HRTO under its new leadership.