National Operations Center of Excellence Partnership Renewed

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE), and the Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America) recently renewed their support for the National Operations Center of Excellence or NOCoE during a ceremony at AASHTO’s 2022 spring meeting in New Orleans.

[Above photo by NOCoE]

The three organizations originally established NOCoE with the support of the Federal Highway Administration to further the practice of TSMO – short for Transportation Systems Management and Operations.

TSMO refers to a set of strategies that focus on operational improvements that can maintain and even restore the performance of the existing transportation system without adding extra capacity, with a goal of getting the most performance out of existing transportation facilities.

Photo by AASHTO

The three organizations signed a new memorandum of understanding or MOU on May 9 this year recommitting themselves to work together and with FHWA to provide technical leadership and share best practices, research, and professional education and training to TSMO practitioners, policymakers, and researchers.

“It is very encouraging to see how far we have come along together in advancing the National Operations Center of Excellence and its services to the TSMO community,” noted Jim Tymon, executive director of AASHTO, at the signing ceremony.

“This was only possible through our mutual collaboration and partnerships,” he said. “By signing the new MOU we will not only be renewing our commitment to NOCoE but will be setting a path for a strengthening of our partnership.”

Faisal Saleem

[Editor’s note: In November 2021, NOCoE selected Faisal Saleem to be its new director. Saleem – who began his tenure as NOCoE’s director in mid-January 2022 – previously served in several intelligent transportation system capacities for the Maricopa County Department of Transportation for nearly 20 years.]

Supported by voluntary financial contributions from AASHTO member states matched by financial support provided by FHWA through a cooperative agreement with AASHTO, NOCoE has “successfully established itself and gained national recognition” as a valuable resource to the TSMO community, Tymon added.

AASHTO pointed out that the new MOU builds upon the past success of NOCoE while recognizing the need for continued association leadership and support to ensure its long-term success.

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