The National Academies

NCHRP 03-130 [RFP]

Guide for Roundabouts

Posted Date: 11/17/2017

  Project Data
Funds: $750,000
(Phase I shall be limited to $100,000)
Contract Time: 30 months
(Phase I—9 months, includes 2 months for NCHRP review and approval of the interim report; Phase II—21 months, includes 3 months for NCHRP review and for contractor's revision of the final report)
Authorization to Begin Work: 6/1/2018 -- estimated
Staff Responsibility: Amir N. Hanna
   Phone: 202/334-1432
   Email: ahanna@nas.edu
RFP Close Date: 1/4/2018
Fiscal Year: 2018



Since its publication in 2010, NCHRP Report 672: Roundabouts: An Informational Guide, Second Edition, has served as a national guide on the different aspects of roundabouts, including planning, analysis, design, and construction.  Also during this period, technology changes have taken place, substantial research on the different aspects of roundabouts has been performed, and many roundabouts have been constructed.  This research and experience gained from these projects has produced many relevant findings and lessons learned.  However, additional research is needed to address the gaps in available roundabout guidance and incorporate the relevant technology, the findings of the new and earlier research, and the lessons learned from the constructed projects into a guide for roundabouts.  This guide will provide updated information and guidance on all aspects of roundabouts and help highway agencies and other organizations address relevant issues when considering the planning and implementation of roundabouts.




The objective of this research is to develop a guide that will serve as the primary source for guidance on all aspects of roundabouts.  The guide will supersede NCHRP Report 672: Roundabouts: An Informational Guide, and other available guidance on roundabouts.


Accomplishment of the project objective will require at least the following tasks.




The NCHRP is seeking the insights of proposers on how best to achieve the research objective. Proposers are expected to describe research plans that can realistically be accomplished within the constraints of available funds and contract time. Proposals must present the proposers' current thinking in sufficient detail to demonstrate their understanding of the issues and the soundness of their approach to meeting the research objective. Task descriptions are intended to provide a framework for conducting the research. 




Task 1. Identify and critically review information relevant to the different aspects of roundabouts (e.g., planning, geometric design, construction, and maintenance).  This information may be obtained from published and unpublished sources and contacts with practitioners.


Task 2. Identify and prioritize the weaknesses and gaps in available roundabout guidance based on input from practitioners and other sources.


Task 3. Based on the information gathered in Tasks 1 and 2, propose an updated research plan to be executed in Phase II to develop a guide that addresses all aspects of roundabouts and serves as the primary source for guidance on roundabouts.  The plan shall also describe the research proposed to address the gaps identified in Task 2 and include a tentative outline of the proposed guide.  Consideration should be given to including case studies demonstrating the performance of roundabouts for different contexts and conditions.


Note: A research plan that provides details on the proposer's current thinking regarding the work anticipated in Phase II must be included in the proposal. The work proposed for Task 5 must be divided into subtasks, and proposers must describe in detail the work proposed for each subtask.  


Task 4.  Prepare an interim report that documents the research performed in Phase I and includes the updated research plan for Phase II.  Following review of the interim report by the panel, the research team will meet with the project panel.  Work on Phase II of the project will not begin until the interim report and the Phase II research plan are approved by the NCHRP.




Task 5. Perform the research approved in Task 4.  Prepare a technical memorandum that describes this research and documents the findings that will be incorporated into the guide.  Also, update the plan for developing the guide based on these findings.  Review comments from NCHRP on this plan shall be incorporated into Task 6.


Note: A review meeting that includes a presentation by the research team to the project panel should be scheduled one month after submitting the technical memorandum.


Task 6. Execute the plan for developing the guide, as modified in Task 5.  Based on the results of this work, develop the guide.  Also, identify inconsistencies with relevant documents (e.g., A Policy on Geometric Design of Highways and Streets published by AASHTO and Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices published by FHWA).


Note: The proposal must include a proposed schedule for submitting these chapters.  A draft version of each guide chapter should be submitted, as soon as completed, to the NCHRP for review. 


Task 7.  Submit a final deliverable that documents the entire research effort and includes (1) a research report documenting the work performed in the project and used to develop the guide and (2) a stand-alone guide for roundabouts.


Note: Following receipt of the draft final deliverable, the remaining 3 months shall be for NCHRP review and comment and for research agency preparation of the final deliverables.




A.  Resumes of research team members must present relevant qualifications and be limited to no more than 2 pages for each member. The section on equipment and facilities (Item 8 in the proposal) shall describe relevant information and be limited to no more than 2 pages.


B.  Proposals should include a task-by-task breakdown of labor hours for each staff member as shown in Figure 4 in the brochure, "Information and Instructions for Preparing Proposals" (http://onlinepubs.trb.org/onlinepubs/crp/docs/ProposalPrep.pdf). Proposals also should include a breakdown of all costs (e.g., wages, indirect costs, travel, materials, and total) for each task using Figures 5 and 6 in the brochure. Please note that TRB Cooperative Research Program subawards (selected proposers are considered subawards to the National Academy of Sciences, the parent organization of TRB) must comply with 2 CFR 200 – Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards. These requirements include a provision that proposers without a "federally" Negotiated Indirect Costs Rate Agreement (NICRA) shall be subject to a maximum allowable indirect rate of 10% of Modified Total Direct Costs. Modified Total Direct Costs include all salaries and wages, applicable fringe benefits, materials and supplies, services, travel, and up to the first $25,000 of each lower-tier subaward and subcontract. Modified Total Direct Costs exclude equipment, capital expenditures, charges for patient care, rental costs, tuition remission, scholarships and fellowships, participant support costs and the portion of each lower-tier subaward and subcontract in excess of $25,000.


C.  The NCHRP is a practical, applied research program that produces implementable products addressing problems faced by transportation practitioners and managers. The benefits of NCHRP research are realized only when the results are implemented in state DOTs and other agencies. Implementation of the research product must be considered throughout the process, from problem statement development to research contract and beyond completion of the research. Item 4(c), "Anticipated Research Results," must include the following: (a) the "product" expected from the research, (b) the audience or "market" for this product, (c) a realistic assessment of impediments to successful implementation, and (d) the institutions and individuals who might take leadership in deploying the research product. The project panel will develop and maintain an implementation plan throughout the life of the project. The research team will be expected to provide input to an implementation team consisting of panel members, AASHTO committee members, the NCHRP Implementation Coordinator, and others in order to meet the goals of NCHRP Active Implementation: Moving Research into Practice, available at http://onlinepubs.trb.org/onlinepubs/nchrp/docs/NCHRP_ActiveImplementation.pdf.


D.  Item 5 in the proposal, "Qualifications of the Research Team," must include a section labeled "Disclosure." Information relevant to the NCHRP's need to ensure objectivity and to be aware of possible sources of significant financial or organizational conflict of interest in conducting the research must be presented in this section of the proposal. For example, under certain conditions, ownership of the proposing agency, other organizational relationships, or proprietary rights and interests could be perceived as jeopardizing an objective approach to the research effort, and proposers are asked to disclose any such circumstances and to explain how they will be accounted for in this study. If there are no issues related to objectivity, this should be stated.


E.  Proposals are evaluated by the NCHRP staff and project panels consisting of individuals collectively very knowledgeable in the problem area. Selection of an agency is made by the project panel considering the following factors: (1) the proposer's demonstrated understanding of the problem; (2) the merit of the proposed research approach and experiment design; (3) the experience, qualifications, and objectivity of the research team in the same or closely related problem area; (4) the plan for ensuring application of results; (5) the proposer's plan for participation by Disadvantaged Business Enterprises--small firms owned and controlled by minorities or women; and (6) the adequacy of the facilities.


Note: The proposer's plan for participation by Disadvantaged Business Enterprises should be incorporated in Item 12 of the proposal.


F.  Copyrights - All data, written materials, computer software, graphic and photographic images, and other information prepared under the contract and the copyrights therein shall be owned by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The contractor and subcontractors will be able to publish this material for non-commercial purposes, for internal use, or to further academic research or studies with permission from TRB Cooperative Research Programs. The contractor and subcontractors will not be allowed to sell the project material without prior approval by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. By signing a contract with the National Academy of Sciences, contractors accept legal responsibility for any copyright infringement that may exist in work done for TRB. Contractors are therefore responsible for obtaining all necessary permissions for use of copyrighted material in TRB's Cooperative Research Programs publications. For guidance on TRB's policies on using copyrighted material please consult Section 5.4, "Use of Copyrighted Material," in the Procedural Manual for Contractors.

Proposals (15 single-bound copies) are due not later than 4:30 p.m. on 1/4/2018.

This is a firm deadline, and extensions are not granted. In order to be considered for award, all copies of the agency's proposal accompanied by the executed, unmodified Liability Statement must be in our offices not later than the deadline shown, or the proposal will be rejected. Proposers may choose any carrier or delivery service for their proposals. However, proposers assume the risk of proposal rejection if the carrier or delivery service does not deliver all the required documents by the deadline.

Delivery Address:

ATTN: Christopher J. Hedges
Director, Cooperative Research Programs
Transportation Research Board
500 Fifth Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001

Liability Statement

The signature of an authorized representative of the proposing agency is required on the unaltered liability statement in order for the NCHRP to accept the agency's proposal for consideration. Proposals submitted without this executed and unaltered statement by the proposal deadline will be summarily rejected. An executed, unaltered statement indicates the agency's intent and ability to execute a contract that includes the provisions in the statement.

Here is a printable version of the Liability Statement (pdf). A free copy of the Adobe Acrobat PDF reader is available at http://www.adobe.com.

General Notes

1. According to the provisions of Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 21, which relates to nondiscrimination in federally assisted programs, all parties are hereby notified that the contract entered into pursuant to this announcement will be awarded without discrimination on the grounds of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or disability.

2. The essential features required in a proposal for research are detailed in the current brochure entitled "Information and Instructions for Preparing Proposals" (updated August 2016). Proposals must be prepared according to this document, and attention is directed specifically to Section V for mandatory requirements. Proposals that do not conform with these requirements will be rejected. This brochure is available here.

3. The total funds available are made known in the project statement, and line items of the budget are examined to determine the reasonableness of the allocation of funds to the various tasks. If the proposed total cost exceeds the funds available, the proposal is rejected.

4. All proposals become the property of the Transportation Research Board. Final disposition will be made according to the policies thereof, including the right to reject all proposals.


Potential proposers should understand clearly that the research project described herein is tentative. The final content of the program depends on the level of funding made available through States' agreements for financial support of the NCHRP. Nevertheless, to be prepared to execute research contracts as soon as possible after sponsors' approvals, the NCHRP is assuming that the tentative program will become official in its entirety and is proceeding with requests for proposals and selections of research agencies.

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