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Institute for Transportation Systems


Professor Neville Parker, Director • Institute Office: Marshak 910 • Tel: 212-650-8050

General Information

The CUNY Institute for Transportation Systems is a multi-disciplinary inter-college effort which addresses transportation issues affecting the economic and social life of the city, state, and region. Institute activities include pure and applied research, policy analysis, analysis of urban transportation systems, pavement and bridge asset management systems, intelligent transportation systems, transportation economics, modeling, forecasting, professional training and development, outreach to inform and attract students to careers in engineering and transportation, and outreach to inform and empower the public concerning transportation issues.

Founded in 1985, the Institute conducts research on all forms of surface transportation including the movement of people and goods, and the provision of services. Among the objectives of the Institute are to disseminate research findings and to serve as a resource to New York City and New York State agencies involved with transportation issues. Some of the current research topics are recycled and composite materials for pavements, life cycle cost analysis of new and rehabilitated pavements, non-destructive testing of urban street pavements, utility cut restoration techniques, urban pavement management systems, transit management, incident management and urban goods movement. Several laboratories are affiliated with the Institute, including Transportation Engineering (Civil Engineering), Powder Technology (Chemical Engineering), and Materials Characterization (Mechanical Engineering).

The Institute’s current outreach efforts include the Transportation Careers (TRAC) program and the Federal Highway Administration-sponsored Summer Transportation Institute (STI) targeting high school students; and the development of a plain English transportation empowerment guide for grass roots community dissemination. Past outreach efforts included the U. S. Department of Transportation Office of Small Business Development Utilization-sponsored Electronic Training and Technical Assistance Program (ETTAP) targeting S/DBE’s, and the Metranet Project (1986 to 1990), a program which fostered communication between public officials and private providers of transportation. The Metranet project sponsored forums, conferences and workshops, and published a newsletter. Over 5,000 people were involved in the Metranet programs, which were sponsored by the Urban Mass Transportation Administration of the U. S. Department of Transportation.

The Institute offers an ongoing professional training program for foreign transportation professionals in cooperation with the International Road Federation, with funding from such multinational agencies as the World Bank and the African Development Bank. These programs are normally intensive menus of coursework, individualized instruction and on-site exposure and training, specifically tailored to the needs of one or more individuals from a designated highway or road authority, and extend from 12 weeks to 18 months. To date these professionals have included officials from Korea, Japan, West Bank, Ethiopia, China, Taiwan, Eritrea, Ghana, Zambia, Tanzania, Lesotho and Syria. Professional training is also offered to city, state and regional agency/industry professionals in the form of both short and "long" courses, some of which are tailored to the specific needs of a requesting agency.

The CUNY Institute for Transportation Systems is the lead institution for a consortium of twelve universities that have been designated as a federally sponsored University Transportation Research Center (Region II). The Center serves New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. Consortium members include: Princeton, Cornell, New York University, Polytechnic University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, New Jersey Institute of Technology, Rutgers University, University of Puerto Rico, and University of the Virgin Islands. Participating CUNY colleges in the Institute are City, Baruch, Bronx Community, the Graduate School, Hunter, John Jay, LaGuardia Community and New York City Technical. The Institute also includes Hostos and Lehman colleges in its outreach programs. The Institute is located at The City College.

The Institute is an active member in a number of professional associations such as the American Road and Transportation Builders Association, the International Road Federation, New York Public Transit Association, the American Public Transit Association, and the Women’s Transportation Seminar.