GDOT, FHWA, USACE Forge New Environmental Agreementeditor@aashto.org September 6, 2019 0 COMMENTS
The Georgia Department of Transportation, the Federal Highway Administration, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers jointly agreed to update environmental Local Coordination Procedures on September 3 – a framework to improve consistency and streamline the permit process for Georgia DOT projects under Guidelines of the Clean Water Act.
“LCP went into effect in 2002 and, while they have been successful, it was time to review and revise the procedures and update them to today’s expectations and standards,” noted Georgia DOT Commissioner Russell McMurry in a statement.
“The new LPC better support a project’s full compliance with all environmental standards, and ultimately a better quality project is delivered,” he said.
Under the revised LPC, interagency consultation now begins during early project planning and is completed prior to concept approval, Georgia DOT noted – resulting in greater efficiency throughout the environmental process and project development.
Other benefits of the new framework include:
- Recognizing that a “one size fits all” approach doesn’t acknowledge the unique circumstances of individual projects.
- Promotes earlier and more meaningful discussion with better outcomes.
- Brings all environmental disciplines to the table to reduce design re-work.
- Applicable for federal and state funded projects.
- Easily integrates into the scoping phase of the Georgia DOT Environmental Impact Statements.
- Compatible with both design-bid-build and design-build project delivery models.
“This is a positive step forward in improving Georgia DOT’s ability to efficiently deliver quality projects that are fully compliant with environmental standards,” McMurry pointed out.