Transportation Goal 4
GOAL: Increase the resilience of the transportation system to shocks and stresses of climate changes
T-LU 4.1: Redesign and upgrade critical and vulnerable infrastructure
The Kansas City region, like many other areas, is already experiencing the effects of climate change. Key local threats focus on extreme heat, drought and flooding. Cities, counties and states would benefit from assessing and reducing risks and vulnerabilities when building new or retrofitting existing transportation facilities.
Local assessments would help prioritize infrastructure retrofit or construction in ways that reduce risks and vulnerabilities. Planning and design processes may consider broader transportation system dynamics to facilitate implementation of sustainability upgrades ahead of worsening impacts.
Priority should be given to retrofitting existing and adding new infrastructure that is designed to mitigate the effects of climate
change in vulnerable communities. Benefits include workforce development and jobs access.
T-LU 4.2: Use technology to monitor integrity of transportation infrastructure and relay real-time data to ensure responsiveness and limit disruptions to users
Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) technology helps monitor roadways and transportation equipment at intersections for disruptions.
In Kansas City, this includes alerting KC Scout, Operation Green Light and local agency staff about systems that are malfunctioning so they can be fixed. It also includes alerting appropriate personnel about congestion due to an accident, roadwork, weather or other special event so the appropriate response can be taken, including diverting traffic to other roadways.
This type of technology helps to mitigate the potential
impacts of flooding and other extreme weather on our transportation systems. By managing congestion, it also helps to reduce emissions from backed-up vehicles. Emerging smart city technology may enable new sustainability applications, as well.
Technology can be used to inform and alert communities about hazards and incidents that will affect travel and safety. Consideration should be given to how alerts and other communications can most effectively reach different segments of the community, especially individuals who may be hard to reach through traditional communications methods.
T-LU 4.3: Integrate water resource and transportation system planning, design and management
Transportation and watershed system planning, design and management should be fundamentally integrated. While transportation infrastructure serves as the region’s largest source of impervious area, stormwater management on transportation facilities typically neglects to address watershed dynamics, water quality or impacts on receiving streams or waterways.
Future opportunities include both designing transportation facilities to reduce vulnerability from flash flooding and to reduce transportation-created urban heat islands.
Green infrastructure, employed as part of integrated watershed management efforts, will help capture the assets inherent in water and minimize the amount of disruption to transportation facilities from flooding.
Focus resources on efforts that affect transportation infrastructure and water systems in underserved communities. Underserved communities are more likely to be impacted by extreme weather impacts of climate change, such as flooding. Resilience measures will likely produce a range of community development and public health cobenefits.