ATTENTION PROPOSERS: A Research Project Statement for NCHRP Project 23-13(03) was released on September 22, 2022; no award was made. The purpose of this Research Project Statement is to re-announce this project. This solicitation is open to all proposers, including any agencies that responded to the earlier Research Project Statement.
Circumstances during the COVID-19 pandemic have indicated a necessity to identify the essential requirements of truck drivers and facilities to ensure health, safety, and security in the movement of goods in normal times and during times of emergency. Research is needed to understand how truck parking facilities function as critical infrastructure and contribute to the resiliency of the freight transportation system with the practical application of ensuring continuance of operations planning for truck parking facilities.
The objective of this research is to develop a guide for effective practices and implementation strategies to integrate resilience and emergency response planning and operations related to truck rest and service areas for supply chain delivery.
The research plan should (1) include a kick-off teleconference with the research team and NCHRP convened within 1 month of the contract’s execution; (2) address how the proposer intends to satisfy the project objective; (3) be divided logically into detailed tasks necessary to fulfill the research objective and include appropriate milestones and interim deliverables; and (4) incorporate opportunities for the project panel to review, comment on, and approve milestone deliverables.
Accomplishment of the project objective will require at least the following tasks.
Task descriptions are intended to provide a framework for conducting the research. 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.
PHASE I — Planning
Task 1. Conduct a literature review of relevant research related to truck rest and service areas for critical supply chain delivery. The review should also include relevant research that highlights the impact of historical and current pandemic events as it relates to the supply chain delivery. The review shall include published and unpublished research conducted through the NCHRP; Federal Highway Administration (FHWA); and other national, international, state, and pooled-fund sponsored research.
Task 2. Conduct a survey and/or interviews to highlight the industry’s diversity, key and current considerations, access to essential amenities and services, strategies for maintaining the availability of truck parking facilities and amenities, and effective practices for the public and private sectors, truck drivers, and other relevant stakeholders as it relates to truck rest and service areas for critical supply chain delivery.
Note: If a survey and/or questionnaire is proposed, NCHRP approval is required prior to deployment.
Task 3. Gather information on available data, effective technologies, and materials used to support solutions to supply chain delivery, truck drivers, truck parking and staging problems, business and community engagement activities, and the basis for truck driver’s decision-making due to the availability/unavailability of truck rest and service areas.
Task 4. Identify and prioritize gaps and opportunities for truck rest and service areas during daily operations and emergency responses as they relate to truck drivers’ operational cost and requirements, security, safety, health, and accessibility to services and amenities. These gaps should be addressed in this research or in the recommended future research as budget permits.
Task 5. Propose a methodology to achieve the research objective, to be fully developed in Phase II. At a minimum, the methodology shall:
Evaluate challenges that public and private sectors encounter regarding truck parking facilities and amenities;
Identify emerging trends and innovative solutions in truck parking operations and essential services that could enhance truck driver health, security, and safety for daily operations and future emergency responses;
Assess the diversity of truck drivers including demographics (gender, marriage status, age, and experience), professional associations/memberships, driving practices, and other operational differences;
Assess the diversity of cargo/commodities transported by truck drivers that may require specialized truck configurations, classes, and permits;
Identify truck rest and service area guidelines for public facilities operations (federally or state-funded facilities) and business practices for private facilities operations as they relate to the trucking industry;
Develop metrics to evaluate the performance of truck rest stops, service areas, distribution centers, freight hubs, intermodal facilities (including ports), and industrial parks; and
Develop a minimum of five representative case studies to showcase effective truck rest and service areas for supply chain delivery based on different geographic regions of the United States, identifying elements to include in model guidelines and regulations, and effective practices implemented by state departments of transportation (DOTs) and relevant stakeholders during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Task 6. Propose a preliminary outline for the guide based on the proposed methodology.
Task 7. Prepare Interim Report No. 1 that documents the work completed in Tasks 1 through 6. The updated plan must describe the work proposed for Phases II and III.
Note: Following a 1-month review of Interim Report No. 1 by the NCHRP, the research team will be required to meet with the NCHRP project panel to discuss the interim report, if necessary. Work on Phases II and III of the project will not begin until authorized by the NCHRP.
PHASE II — Methodology Development
Task 8. Execute the methodology according to the approved Interim Report No.1.
Task 9. Develop examples to demonstrate the developed methodology. The examples should include at a minimum the identified effective practices and implementation strategies for truck rest and services areas in Phase I.
Task 10. Provide a detailed description of each chapter and section of the proposed guide and complete a sample chapter of the proposed guide selected by NCHRP. This chapter should be publication-ready.
Task 11. Prepare Interim Report No. 2 that documents the results of Tasks 8 through 10 and provides an updated work plan for the remainder of the project. The updated plan must describe the work proposed for Phase III.
Note: Following a 1-month review of Interim Report No. 2 by the NCHRP, the research team will be required to meet in-person or online with the NCHRP project panel to discuss the interim report. This meeting is expected to be in-person and be held in Washington, D.C. Whether in-person or online, NCHRP will host the meeting and be responsible for any panel member costs to attend meeting. Work on Phase III of the project will not begin until authorized by the NCHRP.
PHASE III — Guide Development and Final Deliverables
Task 12. Develop the draft guide according to the approved Interim Report No. 2. The draft guide shall be submitted for NCHRP review 6 months before the contract end date.
Task 13. Prepare a final deliverable that documents the entire research effort. Final deliverables should include, at a minimum (1) a final research report documenting the entire research effort and findings, (2) the guide as a stand-alone document, (3) prioritized recommendations for future research, (4) presentation material, and (5) technical memorandum on implementation (see Special Note I).
Note: Following receipt of the draft final deliverables, the remaining 3 months shall be for NCHRP review and comment and for research agency preparation of the final deliverables.
A. The Information and Instructions for Preparing Proposals for the Transportation Research Board’s Cooperative Research Programs were revised in May 2022. Please take note of the new and revised text which is highlighted in yellow.
B. Proposals must be submitted as a single PDF file with a maximum file size of 10 MB. The PDF must be formatted for standard 8 ½” X 11” paper, and the entire proposal must not exceed 60 pages (according to the page count displayed in the PDF). Proposals that do not meet these requirements will be rejected. For other requirements, refer to chapter V of the instructions.
C. The Information and Instructions for Preparing Proposals for the Transportation Research Board’s Cooperative Research Programs have been modified to include a revised policy and instructions for disclosing Investigator Conflict of Interest. For more information, refer to chapter IV of the instructions. A detailed definition and examples can be found in the CRP Conflict of Interest Policy for Contractors. The proposer recommended by the project panel will be required to submit an Investigator Conflict of Interest and Disclosure Form as a prerequisite for contract negotiations.
D. Proposals will be rejected if any of the proposed research team members work for organizations represented on the project panel. The panel roster for this project can be found at https://www.mytrb.org/OnlineDirectory/Committee/Details/6528. Proposers may not contact panel members directly; this roster is provided solely for the purpose of avoiding potential conflicts of interest.
E. Proprietary Products - If any proprietary products are to be used or tested in the project, please refer to Item 6 in the Information and Instructions for Preparing Proposals.
F. Proposals are evaluated by the NCHRP staff and project panels consisting of individuals collectively knowledgeable in the problem area. The project panel will recommend their first choice proposal 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) how the proposer approaches inclusion and diversity in the composition of their team and research approach, including participation by certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprises; and, if relevant, (6) the adequacy of the facilities. A recommendation by the project panel is not a guarantee of a contract. The National Academy of Sciences (NAS - the contracting authority for the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine) will conduct an internal due diligence review and risk assessment of the panel’s recommended proposal before contract negotiations continue.
Note: The proposer's approach to inclusion and diversity as well as participation by Disadvantaged Business Enterprises should be incorporated in Item 11 of the proposal.
G. 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 Academy of Sciences. 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 Academy of Sciences. 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.
H. Proposals should include a task-by-task breakdown of labor hours for each staff member as shown in Figure 4 in the Information and Instructions for Preparing Proposals. 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.
I. The required technical memorandum titled “Implementation of Research Findings and Products” should (a) provide recommendations on how to best put the research findings/products into practice; (b) identify possible institutions that might take leadership in applying the research findings/products; (c) identify issues affecting potential implementation of the findings/products and recommend possible actions to address these issues; and (d) recommend methods of identifying and measuring the impacts associated with implementation of the findings/products. Implementation of these recommendations is not part of the research project and, if warranted, details of these actions will be developed and implemented in future efforts.
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
J. If the team proposes a Principal Investigator who is not an employee of the Prime Contractor, or if the Prime Contractor is proposed to conduct less than 50% of the total effort (by time or budget), then section five should include: (1) a justification of why this approach is appropriate, and (2) a description of how the Prime Contractor will ensure adequate communication and coordination with their Subcontractors throughout the project.
K. All budget information should be suitable for printing on 8½″ x 11″ paper. If a budget page cannot fit on a single 8½″ x 11″ page, it should be split over multiple pages. Proposers must use the Excel templates provided in the Information and Instructions for Preparing Proposals for the Transportation Research Board’s Cooperative Research Programs.