Invitation to Focus Group, June 14, 2004

Dear Member of the Transportation Community:

I am writing to invite you to attend a “Weather Issues in Transportation” meeting on Monday, June 14 in Ames, Iowa. The meeting, to be hosted by the Iowa Department of Transportation and held on the campus of Iowa State University, will include transportation agency professionals, transportation users, and members of the meteorology community from around the Midwest.

In recent years, weather-related transportation issues have become a priority for the national transportation research agenda. The objective of this meeting is to provide a regional, multi-disciplined perspective on weather-related transportation research needs and to establish priorities for research and technology transfer in this area. The meeting will be conducted in a focus group format, with facilitators and recorders. The issues covered will be generated by the attendees, and as a result of the multi-disciplined nature of the participants, may range from planning and design to safety, operations, maintenance, traveler information, and emergency management.

By holding this meeting while the national research agenda is still in its formative stages, as discussed in attachment c, this group will be able to provide guidance for future research and technology transfer activities. This meeting will also provide direction for a research program in its infancy on weather-related transportation research with a Midwest focus. This program will attract a variety of resources to provide practical solutions to weather-related transportation issues.

Sincerely,

Kevin Mahoney
Highway Division Director
Iowa Department of Transportation