Best Practices for Maintaining an HOV Emphasis for Managed Lane Projects

Five notable practices for maintaining an emphasis on HOV facilities include (1) market research, (2) clear signage and messaging, (3) carpool priority, (4) transit priority, and (5) carpool incentives.

The objective of this task order is to develop a synopsis of best practice and lessons learned information of HOT facilities that have incorporated effective strategies to maintain an emphasis on promoting and supporting car pool users. Maintaining a higher vehicle occupancy level is a key component of HOV lanes to reduce congestion and improve air quality. It is important to retain these qualities on facilities than have converted to HOT lanes as well.

While carpooling rates nationwide have declined in the past decade, carpool volumes in some regions and corridors have grown. Managed lane policies and, specifically, the introduction of congestion pricing for HOT lanes may play a role in carpool activity. For this project, TTI developed a review of current policies and practices of managed lanes nationwide in the context of HOV priority and other goals for managed lanes. Findings from this report summarize a literature review of 30 HOT facilities and 10 express toll lanes (ETL) facilities (priced lanes which do not have exemptions for HOV) across the country, a targeted questionnaire distributed to 15 transportation agencies, and five semi-structured interviews with managed lane operators, selected for notable practices related to HOV encouragement.