For transportation folks, one of the biggest developments of 2012 was the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act --or MAP-21-- that President Obama signed into law last July. This two-year surface transportation law changed and streamlined many DOT programs as well as introducing a few new ones.
Putting those changes into action was a stiff challenge for DOT professionals, and I'm happy to say they have been up to that challenge.
MAP-21 meant crafting dozens of fact sheets and other documents to provide guidance to transportation planners who will help carry out the new programs across the United States. It meant creating a multi-modal Freight Policy Council to develop a National Strategic Freight Plan. It meant beginning to forge a transit safety program from whole cloth. And it meant an extensive effort to communicate the law's many changes to America's transportation community.
In just three months, and in time for the October 1 MAP-21 start date, we published fact sheets on all Federal Highway Administration and Federal Transit Administration programs and prepared interim guidance for DOT's largest programs.
Also, on its MAP-21 website, FHWA made available 39 different question and answer documents covering a wide range of topics from Innovative Project Delivery to Highway Safety to Environmental Review. Many of those documents were prepared in partnership with FTA, and I'm really pleased to see that cross-agency collaboration at DOT. FTA's MAP-21 website features its own FAQs and 17 different fact sheets on topics like Capital Investment Projects (which many of us know as "New Starts"), Metropolitan Planning, and State of Good Repair.
One of the biggest goals of this group is developing the National Freight Strategic Plan that MAP-21 requires. We also released Interim Guidance to states on the development of state freight plans and the creation of state freight advisory committees. This guidance includes specific details on what DOT recommends states include in their plans and how these plans should be developed.
One area where we've been very aggressive is outreach. MAP-21 has important changes that must be communicated to America's transportation community, and we have been working very hard to do just that. So far, we've held a major Freight Policy stakeholder event in September, more than 25 FHWA and FTA MAP-21 webinars, a roundtable discussion on congestion, national online dialogues on Freight Policy and on Performance Measures, and numerous listening sessions.
These efforts combined have reached more than 15,000 stakeholders.
The DOT professionals who have put in hours and hours of work helping the transportation community make the transition to MAP-21 deserve our congratulations. But we will remain just as busy in 2013 as we build on the progress we've made and continue putting MAP-21's changes to work.
We have big goals for this year, and we're moving ahead at full-steam.