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Development of a Sustainable Strategy Supporting Transportation Planning and Conservation Priorities Across the West

Started: September, 2013 Ended: September, 2015 Project ID #4W4669 Status: Completed

Results & Findings

Featured content of the final report includes:  results from a questionnaire on transportation professionals’ use of Crucial Habitat Assessment Tools (CHATs) and other state wildlife data;  best practices for using CHATs and other digital wildlife data to integrate the needs of fish and wildlife into transportation plans, programs and projects;  a matrix of opportunities to expand the use of CHATs and other digital wildlife data by transportation professionals; and  a description of how CHATs intersect with Eco-Logical, FHWA’s ecosystem-based approach to transportation planning.


The purpose of this project is to advance efforts to integrate wildlife information and analyses from 16 western states into federal, state, local and tribal transportation planning and projects.


WTI is helping the Western Governor's Association (WGA) conduct research to identify specific ways in which the WGA’s Crucial Habitat Assessment Tools (CHATs) can support efficient and environmentally sound transportation planning. It seeks to identify and help build a collaborative approach by advancing application of CHATs for transportation planning and project implementation in 16 western states.   In partnership with the Western Governors' Wildlife Council and the Center for Large Landscape Conservation, WTI will conduct analyses, convene workshops, review best practices and make recommendations in support of efforts to better incorporate wildlife values into the surface transportation network of highways and roads. The WGA Project Team will develop recommendations for the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the WGA to prioritize new policies and operational solutions that incorporate state information on wildlife and crucial habitat into transportation plans and projects across the West.  In sum, the project will help to promote FHWA’s Ecological principles for collaborative, integrated, approaches that are tied to watershed or ecosystem scale decision-making during infrastructure planning, environmental review, and permitting.


Files & Documents

Sponsors & Partners

  • Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Sponsor
  • Western Governors' Association Co-Sponsor

Part of: Road Ecology

Project Tagged In: habitat connectivity, wildlife

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