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news release

P.O. Box 600
Trenton, NJ

Contact: Joe Fiordaliso

RELEASE: March 23, 2004

NJDOT forms partnership with Rutgers University and the Federal Highway Administration

(Piscataway)   Traffic Engineering and Safety were the focal points today as NJDOT Commissioner Jack Lettiere was joined by several dignitaries in announcing the formation of the Transportation Safety Resource Center at Rutgers University.   The center, which will be located on the Rutgers Busch Campus, is a University/Agency Partnership between the NJ Department of Transportation, Rutgers University and the Federal Highway Administration.

“ The Transportation Safety Resource Center will support NJDOT's efforts to reduce accidents and improve safety on NJ's roadways,“ said Lettiere. “This is the next step in our continuing effort to insure the safety of New Jersey's roadways.   This center will provide county and local governments with the tools needed to address local transportation issues.”

The goal of the transportation safety resource center (TSRC) is to address traffic safety and resulting security concerns at the local levels in New Jersey by establishing a partnership between federal/state transportation agencies, local stakeholders, academic institutions, and the private sector.

A series of programs and initiatives that will include comprehensive training, are to be implemented at the state and local levels during the course of the program. The training enables local governments to implement a comprehensive safety management-planning model that includes crash data analysis, congestion management and security components.

Initially, the two year, $4 million dollar Federally-funded center will s trive to assist NJDOT in their efforts to improve highway safety by creating a core program that consolidates existing efforts championed by both the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

“Rutgers University has a long history of working with the New Jersey Department of Transportation and the FHWA, and we look forward to implementing the program and seeking additional safety related resources for New Jersey,” said Richard McCormick, President of Rutgers University.

According to Dennis Merida, Division Administrator for the FHWA, “We have been presented with a new approach to addressing New Jersey's highway safety problems.  Utilizing experience gained from FHWA's successful pilot program, the center will have new computer modeling capabilities that will help us address future transportation needs and safety with greater accuracy.”

Over the last year, the New Jersey Department of Transportation has taken the lead on a number of initiatives such as identifying “Safe Corridors” and establishing Safety Impact Teams to investigate necessary safety improvements, allocating $20 million for engineering and technological improvements, adding 500 miles of raised pavement reflectors, recording driver safety public safety announcements, and expanding driver education programs through the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission.

In addition, NJDOT has invested $7 million through the “Safe Streets to Schools” Program, $6 million to improve bike and pedestrian friendly trails, expanded the Emergency Service Patrol, and promoted the #77 Aggressive Driver Hotline.
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  Department of Transportation
  P.O. Box 600
  Trenton, NJ 08625-0600
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  Last Updated:  March 23, 2004