NITC Announces Funding for Six New "Small Starts" Projects


Our National Institute for Transportation & Communities (NITC) research program has awarded grant funding for a new series of Small Starts projects.

Small Starts grants assist researchers who are interested in transportation but have not yet had an opportunity to undertake a small project—$15,000 in funding or less—that supports NITC's theme of safe, healthy and sustainable transportation choices to foster livable communities.

The latest projects selected by NITC's executive committee support that theme in exploring livable streets, multimodal safety and transportation efficiency.

The six newly funded projects are:

  • Is There a "Buy Local" Case for Lower Travel Speeds? Testing Differences in Driver Recognition of Local Versus National Retail at Different Travel Speeds—Jonathan Bean and Arlie Adkins, University of Arizona (Full Proposal)
  • How Will Autonomous Vehicles Change Local Government Budgeting and Finance? A Case Study of Solid Waste, Drop-off/Pick-up Zones, and Parking—Benjamin Clark, University of Oregon (Full Proposal)
  • How Can Interdisciplinary Teams Leverage Emerging Technologies to Respond to Transportation Infrastructure Needs? A Mixed-Methods Evaluation of Civil Engineers, Urban Planning, and Social Workers’ Perspectives—Noelle Fields and Courtney Cronley, University of Texas at Arlington (Full Proposal)
  • Vehicle Sensor Data (VSD) Based Traffic Control in Connected Automated Vehicle (CAV) Environment—Xianfeng Yang, University of Utah (Full Proposal)
  • A Comprehensive Examination of Electronic Wayfinding Technology for Visually Impaired Travelers in an Urban Environment—Martin Swobodzinski and Amy Parker, Portland State University (Full Proposal)
  • A Decentralized Network Consensus Control Approach for Urban Traffic Signal Optimization—Gerardo Lafferriere, Portland State University (Full Proposal)

They represent a strong mix of topics and disciplines across our partner campuses that support and further advance livability. These projects total $120,000 in funding for this round for Small Starts Grants.

We will issue our next General RFP (projects requesting $100,000 or less) in the Spring of 2018, and anticipate our next round of the Small Starts RFP (projects requesting $15,000 or less) again in the Fall of 2018.

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The National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC), is a program of the Transportation Research and Education Center (TREC) at Portland State University. NITC is one of five U.S. Department of Transportation national university transportation centers. The NITC program is a Portland State-led partnership with the University of Oregon, Oregon Institute of Technology, University of Utah and new partners University of Arizona and University of Texas at Arlington. We pursue our theme — improving mobility of people and goods to build strong communities — through research, education and technology transfer.

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