Clarifying the quadrennial needs study process.
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Clarifying the quadrennial needs study process.

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    Final report.
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  • Abstract:
    The Quadrennial Needs Study was developed to assist in the

    identification of highway needs and the distribution of road funds

    in Iowa among the various highway entities. During the period 1978

    to 1990, the process has seen large shifts in needs and associated

    funding distribution in individual counties with no apparent

    reasons. This study investigated the reasons forsuchshifts.

    The study identified program inputs that can result in major

    shifts in needs either up or down from minor changes in the input

    values. The areas of concern were identified as the condition

    ratings for roads and structures, traffic volume and mix counts,

    and the assignment of construction cost areas. Eight counties

    exhibiting the large shifts (greater than 30%) in needs over time

    were used to test the sensitivity of the variables. A ninth

    county was used as the base line for the study.

    Recommendations are identified for improvements in the process

    of data collection in the areas of road and structure condition


    rating, traffic, and in the assignment of construction cost areas.

    Advice is also offered in how to account for changes in

    jurisdiction between successive studies. Maintenance cost area

    assignment and levels of maintenance service are identified as

    requiring additional detailed research.

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