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California and Oregon Advanced Transportation Systems (COATS)

Project #: 429856
Start Date: 05/01/1998
End Date: 06/30/2001
Status: Completed

Most efforts in Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) have focused on urbanized metropolitan areas. In 1991, the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) inquired into rural concerns dealing with advanced transportation technologies, and in 1995 initiated a Program for Advancing Rural Transportation Technologies (PARTT). This was a rural ITS scoping study that broadly identified the transportation needs and concerns of rural transportation in California. In addition, PARTT broadly reviewed advanced transportation technologies, identified key issues concerning each technology, and developed conceptual ideas for future activities.As a result of PARTT, Caltrans designated a geographic area in Northern California as a study area to further refine the need and application of ITS in a rural environment. To maximize resources and foster cooperation, Caltrans and the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) expanded the Northern California study area into Southern Oregon and partnered to investigate the feasibility of ITS throughout a bi-state study area. Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Regional Pooled-Fund Program funds were secured to fund the project. Caltrans and ODOT selected the Western Transportation Institute (WTI) at Montana State University, Bozeman, to carry out the study.A key element of this effort will be to adopt strategies that will lead to the use of ITS to enhance safety; improve the movement of people, goods, services and information; increase travel information and promote trip enhancement; and subsequently promote the economic development of the bi-state region. Critical to this effort will be the identification of necessary partnerships and funding sources to implement, operate and maintain ITS.


The purpose is to institute a California-Oregon bi-state, multi-jurisdictional planning, research, and development effort. As well as to adopt strategies leading to the use of ITS to enhance safety; improve the movement of people, goods, services, and information; and promote economic vitality.


  • Steve Albert
    Steve Albert