The NJTPA conducts a variety of studies each year focused on transportation issues identified in the Regional Transportation Plan. From the adequacy of freight movement facilities to promising applications of new traffic control technologies to forecasts of future trends and conditions, the studies explore issues that affect the entire northern New Jersey region. The goal is to better understand the issues and explore strategies and projects to improve regional mobility.
Current and Completed Studies are listed below.
In addition to studies of regional issues, the NJTPA sponsors studies of mobility in major travel corridors and subareas that extend beyond the jurisdiction of any one town or county. Local concerns about congestion, air quality, noise, and land use development are assessed and incorporated into any recommended improvements. Corridor studies can involve highway travel, as well as transit and bicycle and pedestrian travel.
The outcomes are well defined solutions and strategies, often addressing needs involving multiple modes of travel, that can be "handed off" to implementing agencies such as the New Jersey Department of Transportation, NJ Transit or county or local engineers.
NJTPA also plays an advisory role in numerous transportation planning studies led by other agencies where recommended corridor scale improvements will have regional implications.
-  Bicycle and Pedestrian Access to Transit Stations
NJ TRANSIT, in partnership with the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA), is proud to announce the completion of the Bicycle and Pedestrian Access to Transit Study. This study is a demonstration of NJ TRANSIT’s commitment to safe and accessible transportation. NJ TRANSIT’s consultant team has produced a full color report that identifies barriers limiting pedestrian and bicycle access to transit stations, at six locations within the NJTPA region. Also included are a series of conceptual designs to improve transit station access and safety for bicyclists, pedestrians, and people with disabilities.
-  Integrated Corridor Management
The NJTPA participated in Integrated Corridor Management (ICM) planning studies with the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) and the New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) among other regional agencies. Grant funding was provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation under a program to help cities or regions combine numerous information technologies and real-time travel information from highway, rail, and transit operations.
-  Morris Canal Greenway Study
This study identifies a continuous route of 111 miles for development of a world-class greenway, including pedestrian and bicycle facilities, along or close to the route of the historic Morris Canal. The greenway route makes connections between all the remaining segments of the original canal towpath. When completed the greenway will provide residents of northern New Jersey a facility for recreation and active transportation. It will also provide a connections between business districts along the route.
-  Alternative Fuel Vehicles Infrastructure
NJTPA partnered with three pilot municipalities—Montclair, Secaucus and Woodbridge—to develop local readiness plans to facilitate the use of electric and natural gas vehicles in those communities. In addition, the pilot municipalities and consultants reviewed analysis of potential high opportunity zones for electric vehicle charging within each town.
-  Project Prioritization Criteria Development and Scoring Update
Federal regulations require that the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) include a list of projects prioritized by the MPO. Projects cannot receive federal funding unless they are included in the TIP, which is updated every two years.
-  City of Newark Pedestrian & Bicycle Safety Action Plan
This plan is a collaborative effort between the City of Newark and the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA) with input from stakeholders and the community. The plan's intent is two-fold: to serve as a guide for city staff to prioritize locations of greatest concern and also to inform the public where the city intends to focus its efforts.
-  Inventory and Assessment of Waterborne Transportation Resources
Through this effort, NJTPA developed an up-to-date and accurate inventory of the available sites to support marine transportation in the region.
-  Regional Freight Commodity Profiles
The project enhanced the NJTPA’s freight modeling tools, addressed gaps in existing freight and industry data, and prepared summary data products, including a set of Regional Commodity Profiles documents.
-  Rail Freight Capacity and Needs Assessment to Year 2040
The primary focus of this study were the NJTPA Region’s major freight Corridor Lines as follows: CSX River Line, Conrail Northern Branch, P&H Branch, Conrail Lehigh Line, Norfolk Southern Lehigh Line, and CSX West Trenton Line.
-  2040 Freight Industry Level Forecasts
The primary goal of this project was to develop a clear, accurate and comprehensive picture of regional freight activity, both current and future. The end product is an accurate picture of where concentrations of goods movement activity can be expected to occur in the region in the future, the types of commodities that will be moving, and where strategic investments should be made. The project was conducted for NJTPA by a consultant team of Cambridge Systematics, Inc. with Parsons Brinckerhoff (PB), A. Strauss-Wieder Inc., and the Rutgers University Center for Urban Policy Research (CUPR). Complete Dec 2012.
-  Morris/Warren County Rail Corridor Study
This study examined the infrastructure and operational improvements necessary to modernize the primary rail freight corridor serving Morris and Warren counties, helping it accommodate taller and heavier cars and generate future economic development. The corridor consists of Norfolk Southern’s Washington Secondary Line between Phillipsburg and Hackettstown in Warren County and NJ TRANSIT’s Morristown Line from Hackettstown to Morristown in Morris County.
-  Central NJ-Raritan Valley Study
In April 2011, the NJTPA, in partnership with NJ TRANSIT, completed the Central New Jersey / Raritan Valley Transit Study, an analysis of potential transit improvements along the Interstate 78 (I-78) corridor. This study provides additional analysis of several recommendations made in the I-78 Corridor Transit Study, completed by NJTPA in January 2008.
Traffic congestion along the I-78 corridor is forecast to worsen, due to future residential and employment growth in New Jersey and in the Lehigh Valley in Pennsylvania (adjacent to the Study Area). Existing transit services and facilities in the Study Area are limited: the RVL (Raritan Valley Line) rail service extends only to eastern Hunterdon County and rail station and Park-and-Ride facilities convenient to I-78 are at or near capacity. There is demand for additional transit service along the corridor, but the type and scope of investment to improve service will determine how much of that demand can be captured.
-  Elizabeth Midtown Multi-Modal Integration Study
The NJTPA, in partnership with NJ TRANSIT, Union County and the City of Elizabeth, has developed a conceptual station area plan for the "Midtown" Elizabeth station on NJ TRANSIT's Northeast Corridor rail line. The plan is designed to leverage proposed investments in the rail station and transit system, planned redevelopment, and various multi-modal circulation needs to improve a location long-envisioned by the City as a catalyst for downtown revitalization and by NJ TRANSIT as an important regional transit hub. The study was completed in September 2011.
-  Greater Newark Bus System Study
This three-year study aimed to improve bus services in the greater Newark area. The study area focuses on Newark, Elizabeth and urban Essex County, but bus service improvements in this core area will positively impact service in Union, Passaic, Bergen and Hudson counties as well.
-  Pedestrian Safety at and Near Bus Stops Study
The study by the NJTPA—in close collaboration with New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety, and NJ TRANSIT—sought to improve safety at and around bus stops within the NJTPA region. Its centerpiece was an education campaign plan to raise awareness about safety for both pedestrians and motorists. The study also made engineering, education, and enforcement recommendations through its Bus Stop Safety Toolbox and Bus Stop Field Audit Reports. Bus stop safety design suggestions included both long-term and short-term improvements with bus stop location, pedestrian signage/signals, pavement markings and area illumination considered at specific high pedestrian crash bus stop locations.
-  Region-wide Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory Project
The North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority conducted a greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions inventory and forecast (I&F) for the entire NJTPA region. Project goals were to develop a region-side inventory of GHG emissions for a base year; allocate GHG emissions down to the county and municipality level; forecast GHG emissions for calendar years 2020, 2035 and 2050; assist sub-regions in their greenhouse gas mitigation and adaptation efforts.
-  Truck Rest Stop Study
The North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority completed the North Jersey Truck Rest Stop Study in early 2008. The NJTPA North Jersey Truck Stop Study Refinement was completed in early 2010. The NJTPA studies were motivated by the lack of adequate truck rest and service stops—especially near the port—currently available to truck drivers who are subject to new federal rules reducing drivers’ hours of service. As a result, truckers are often forced to pull over on streets or highway shoulders to rest. Few, if any of these locations, offer truck drivers legal parking space and amenities such as food, showers, and repair services. This raises safety and environmental concerns throughout the region and also creates a potentially dangerous situation for the drivers themselves.