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Summer 2021 Newsletter
Student Spotlight: Sonia Anthoine 
Image of Sonia Anthoine
Meet Sonia Anthoine, a recent UC Davis graduate in Civil Engineering with a minor in Sustainability in the Built Environment! She is passionate about the intersection of transportation and environmental engineering, especially concerning the implementation of equitable and sustainable transportation. She has contributed to several research projects, including travel behavior of Jump bike-share users, the State Zero TrafficFatalities Task Force, and building a benefit-cost tool for the Caltrans Active Transportation Program.
Congratulations on all of your achievements, Sonia!
Congratulations to NCST Dissertation & Fellowship Awardees!
Congratulations to our UC Riverside, University of Vermont, Georgia Tech, and UC Davis dissertation grant and graduate fellowship recipients for the 2021-2022 cycle! Our recent awardees are contributing to research on electric vehicle charging infrastructure, minimizing emissions of electric vehicle charging, e-commerce, dock-less e-bike share, public transportation, and developing emission models for marine vessels.
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Image of Jacqueline Garrido
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 Yusuf Jubair                          Jacqueline Garrido                     Chas Frederickson
         UC Riverside                             UC Riverside                              UC Riverside  
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 Luis Enriquez-Contreras                      Parker King                                 Ryan Drover
         UC Riverside                        University of Vermont                         UC Riverside  
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          Anmol Pahwa                         Parsa Pezeshknej                    Tatsuya Fukushige
             UC Davis                          University of Vermont                          UC Davis  
            Huiying Fan                                 Ziyi Dai                                    Caleb Weed
           Georgia Tech                           Georgia Tech                               Georgia Tech         
Meet the NCST 2021 Undergrad Summer Research Fellows!

Congratulations to our 16 UC Davis Summer 2021 Undergraduate Research Fellowship recipients! This NCST fellowship program supports undergraduate students for a twelve-week period during the summer to participate in transportation research projects. Research mentors include UC Davis faculty, professional researchers, and graduate students. The fellows are working on a variety of sustainable transportation research projects including the COVID-19 pandemic’s effects on travel behavior, density and transit oriented housing legislation, animal infrastructure for mitigating wildlife-vehicle conflicts, consequences of freeway construction on minority neighborhoods, and many more.


We look forward to seeing their results at the end of the summer!

Photo collage of the NCST 2021 Undergrad Summer Research Fellows
Upcoming Events
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August 18th, 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. PDT
Dr. Randall Guensler | NCST Associate Director, Professor at School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology
Anne Blair (Guest Respondent) | Senior EV Policy Manager, Electrification Coalition
This webinar will present findings from a study of the effectiveness of Georgia’s electric vehicle tax credit. Researchers used novel methods to estimate what electric vehicle sales in Georgia would likely have been without the tax credit, and thus assess the degree to which the tax credit may have spurred the market. The results can inform the design of future incentives at the state and federal level to promote electric vehicle adoption.
International Conference on Ecology & Transportation banner
International Conference on Ecology and Transportation 2021
September 21-30, 2021 — Virtual

NCST and ITS-Davis are proud to announce their collaboration with UC Davis’ Road Ecology Center in organizing the 11th Biennial ICOET conference! The conference is entirely virtual, allowing for hosts from a wide variety of disciplines such as: agency, academic, consultant, NGO scientists, practitioners, and policy-maker personnel from North America and around the world. This conference’s theme is “Transforming Transportation Ecology in the Global Village”.
Webinars On-Demand
Dr. Lewis Fulton | Director, STEPS/ Energy Futures Program, UC Davis
Junia Compostella | Ph.D. candidate, STEPS/ 3RFM, UC Davis
Tim Wallington (Guest Respondent) | Researcher, Ford Motor Company Labs
Image of two phones depicting ride-sharing services, Lyft and Uber.
This webinar explored the three major revolutions occurring within the transportation sector: vehicle automation, electrification, and shared mobility. It delved into findings discussing the implications and costs of such transformations which have the potential to influence future transportation policies. 
Dr. Michael McNally | Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, UC Irvine
Dr. Giovanni Circella | Director of the 3 Revolutions Future Mobility Program, UC Davis
Dr. Rezwana Rafiq | Assistant Project Scientist, UC Irvine
Ellen Greenberg (Guest Respondent) | Deputy Director of Sustainability, Caltrans
UC Davis image of people on a bus during COVID-19 pandemic
This webinar highlighted recent UC ITS and NCST research surrounding the impacts of COVID-19 on both short and long-term travel patterns of United States citizens. The speakers discussed how individuals tend to return to previous behaviors after large disruptions, but the larger the disruption the more likely that modifications in lifestyles might persist. Furthermore, the webinar shared insights on how such travel patterns can be shaped to meet both state and national long-term transportation goals.  
Dr. Alan Jenn | Assistant Director, Energy Futures Research Center, ITS, UC Davis
Image from presentation, "Federal Fuel Tax and Implementing Alternative Vehicle Pricing Mechanisms"
This webinar investigated the institutional structure of the current gasoline tax at the federal level including historical changes, how the tax is collected, and how it is allocated and disbursed to fund infrastructure projects. It also examined design choices for road pricing programs. The analysis found opportunities for integrating technology across multiple pricing programs.
New Research Underway! 
At the NCST, we’ve launched a new round of research projects this past spring, with many more projects set to kick-off in the Fall. Here are a few highlights of what our researchers are getting started on:
• A UC Riverside team is evaluating shared delivery services such as peer-to-peer food take-out or package delivery to understand their environmental impacts and model how these services could improve freight sustainability. Read more
Photo of electric vehicles being charged in a parking lot
• Georgia Tech researchers are exploring vehicle-grid interactions as electric vehicles achieve greater market share to inform recommendations for regionally tailored electric vehicle deployment scenarios that will maximize environmental benefits while minimizing unintended consequences. Read more.
• A UC Davis team is studying changes in land use patterns and transportation infrastructure, such as infill development and active transportation investments, to understand the degree to which these changes result in reduced vehicle travel. The team will also assess whether public policies brought about these changes. Read more
Over what vehicle speed range can a hybrid vehicle operate solely from its hybrid-electric system?
a. below 25 miles per hour
b. below 42 miles per hour
c. between 33 and 57 miles per hour
d. above 57 miles per hour
Which demographic group saw virtually no change in ridehailing usage during the pandemic?
a. blue-collar workers
b. white-collar workers
c. service industry workers
d. non-essential workers
Recently Completed Research
Building a GIS Workshop for High School Students
Meghan Orr, Ben Olson, Angelina Carballo, Alondra Garcia, and Thomas O'Brien | California State University, Long Beach
Geographic information systems (GIS) are an increasingly relevant tool being used in a variety of workforces. While education on GIS is well developed at the collegiate level
Image from the white paper showing a screenshot of Google Maps with US ports flagged
and in workforce training programs, it is underutilized in K-12 settings. This white paper researched ways to successfully build a GIS workshop to introduce students and instructors to GIS education and presents a set of best practices and recommendations for successfully implementing GIS education.
Cost of Plug-in Electric Vehicle Ownership: The Cost of Transitioning to Five Million Plug-In Vehicles in California
Debapriya Chakraborty, Koral Buch, and Gil Tal | University of California, Davis
Image from research report containing a graph showing vehicle ownership by home type from 2020 to 2045
Total cost of ownership (TCO) studies are generally used as a tool to understand how and when plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) technology will reach cost parity with conventional fuel vehicles. The researchers present here a detailed analysis of vehicle manufacturing costs and market-level TCO accounting for technology uncertainties, behavioral heterogeneity, and key decision parameters of automakers. Using the estimates of the vehicle manufacturing costs, they estimate the cost of electrification of California’s LDV fleet to achieve the state’s net-zero emission goal by 2045. 
Fighting for Curb Space: Parking, Ride-Hailing, Urban Freight Deliveries, and Other Users
Miguel Jaller, Caroline Rodier, Michael Zhang, Huachao Lin, and Kathryn Lewis | University of California, Davis
There is a need to optimally allocate curb space to the different and growing needs of passenger and freight transport. This study conducted a comprehensive literature review
Image from research report containing a graph showing the total VKT(KM) for the parking capacity in percent
on several topics related to curb space management. Considering a case study in San Francisco, the authors evaluated the performance of the system with respect to a number of parking behavior scenarios. In doing so, the authors developed a parking simulation following a set of parking behaviors.
Failing Malls: Optimizing Opportunities for Housing
Hilda Blanco | University of Southern California
California, like most of the country, was facing a transformation in retail before the COVID-19 epidemic. Increasing Internet shopping has ushered the closing of anchor stores, as well
Image from the research report showing a plan for a mall redevelopment, including the project boundary, parcel line, commercial core, and urban village
as the closure of many regional shopping malls, which have sizable footprints, ranging from 40–100+ acres. This offers opportunities for the redevelopment of failing malls to address pressing needs in California—the need for housing and for efficient transit provisions for such redevelopments. This research is focused on how mall conversions can be planned and implemented in a sustainable way.
Emissions Impact of Connected and Automated Vehicle Deployment in California
Giovanni Circella, Miguel Jaller, Ran Sun, Xiaodong Qian, Farzad Alemi | University of California, Davis
Image from the research report containing a bar graph showing the range of vehicle miles traveled for different connected and automated vehicle scenarios
This study helps understand how the anticipated emergence of autonomous vehicles will affect various aspects of society and transportation, including travel demand, vehicle miles traveled, energy consumption, and emissions of greenhouse gases and other pollutants. The study results also show that total vehicle miles traveled and vehicle hours traveled could be substantially impacted by a modification in future auto travel costs. 
Workforce Development Needs of Transportation Sector Climate Adaptation Professionals
Jonathan Dowds and Glenn McRae | University of Vermont
Image from the white paper containing a bar graph showing the types of climate adaptation training opportunities present in various agency types
Climate adaptation is now a well-documented need in the transportation sector, and there are strong conceptual frameworks for the adaptation process. Since climate adaptation is an emerging field, the pathways for developing the skills and competencies for adaptation careers are not well established. This white paper assesses the workforce development needs and current training opportunities related to transportation-sector climate adaptation.
Consideration of Automated Vehicle Benefits and Research Needs for Rural America
Jonathon Dowds, James Sullivan, and Gregory Rowangould | University of Vermont
Lisa Aultman-Hall | University of Waterloo

An illustration showing a connected and autonomous vehicle in traffic; the car has a yellow circle around it and is scanning the car ahead of it; the other cars have green boxes around them
Safety, mobility, accessibility challenges, and dependence on personal vehicles have long plagued rural transportation systems. Benefits in these areas are widely touted by autonomous vehicle (AV) advocates. This paper investigates five methods that have been used to study VMT changes in a rural context.
Modal Shifts in California from 2012-2017: Investigating Changes in Biking, Walking, and Transit from the 2012 CHTS and 2017 NHTS
Susan Pike and Susan Handy | University of California, Davis
An image from the reseach report containing a bar graph showing the percent change of various transportation modes from 2012 to 2017
This study evaluates changes in travel mode shares in California over the period from 2012, when the California Household Travel Survey (CHTS) was most recently completed, to 2017, the most recent implementation of National Household Travel Survey (NHTS). The research team explores the factors contributing to this change, as well as external factors or changes over time that may contribute to mode share changes. 
2020 Critical Update to Caltrans Wildfire Vulnerability Analysis
James Thorne, Ryan Boynton, Allan Hollander, Jason Whitney, and Kristen Shapiro | University of California, Davis
Catastrophic wildfires from 2015 to 2020 caused a large amount of damage to the Caltrans road network. To reduce the risk of further wildfire damage and to improve public safety, particularly for disadvantaged communities, Caltrans has engaged in assessing the
An image from the research report containing maps showing the 2020 priority route highways and fuel reduction priority routes from 2019 to 2020
priority locations for vegetation treatment within the lands it owns called the Right of Way (ROW). This UC Davis research project was designed to support efforts within Caltrans in conducting a wildfire vulnerability risk assessment for fuels reduction in the ROW to protect Caltrans’ infrastructure and travelers.
Technology Review and Roadmap for Inventorying Complete Streets for Integration into Pavement Asset Management Systems
April Gadsby and Yichang (James) Tsai | Georgia Institute of Technology
John Harvey | University of California, Davis
Complete Streets provide mobility for all modes of transportation including active transportation. Transportation agencies must maintain these assets, which requires bringing
An illustration of a complete street; four scenarios are shown that have different combinations of cars, public transit, transit stops, bike lanes, and pedestrians
them into asset management systems. Many gaps exist to include Complete Streets in asset management, so this project developed a road map to fill those gaps. To create this roadmap, the study developed, refined, and performed surveys, synthesized the survey outcomes, and identified current statuses, challenges, and needs. 
New Policy Briefs
Ridehailing Demand Is Resilient Among Low-Income Travelers During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Grant Matson, Sean McElroy, and Giovanni Circella | University of California, Davis
Yongsung Lee
| University of Hong Kong
Millennial Travelers Are More Multimodal than Older Travelers, But This Trend Might Change as They Age
Yongsung Lee | University of Hong Kong
Patricia L. Mokhtarian and Subhrajit Guhathakurta | Georgia Institute of Technology
Giovanni Circella and Xiatian Iogansen | University of California, Davis
Telecommuting Rates During the Pandemic Differ by Job Type, Income, and Gender
Grant Matson, Sean McElroy, and Giovanni Circella | University of California, Davis
Yongsung Lee | University of Hong Kong

Congestion Reduction via Personalized Incentives
Ali Ghafelebashi, Meisam Razaviyayn, and Maged Dessouky | University of Southern Californai
NCST in the News
Induced Travel Calculator Project
Screenshot of the Induced Travel Calculator; the user can select the facility type (interstate highway or class 2 or 3 facility), the county, and the "Input total lane miles added"
The NCST Induced Travel Calculator developed by Drs. Susan Handy, Jamey Volker, and Amy Lee was cited in articles in the Washington Post and Colorado Public Radio. This tool allows researchers to estimate the induced travel effect and understand the true impacts of widening highways on vehicle miles traveled and pollution. The team applied the calculator to five highway expansion projects approved in California over the last 12 years and found that environmental reviews fail to accurately analyze induced travel from highway expansion projects.
The Impact of Shared Mobility on the Use of Other Transportation Modes and Auto Ownership among Millennials and Middle-Age Adults in California
NCST researcher Dr. Giovanni Circella has been quoted in the New York Times and The Wall Street Journal regarding the future of transportation post-COVID-19. His recent
Line illustration of a person using a laptop in a house
research evaluates the emerging impacts of the pandemic on mobility. The research team found substantial shifts from physical commutes to teleworking, more adoption of e-shopping and home delivery services, more frequent trips by walking and biking for leisure purposes, and changes in ride-hailing use. Also, the research team discusses implications of these findings from the perspectives of environmental sustainability and social equity.

Can Californians Charge Electric Cars During Summer Heat?

Painted line image of a car with an electric plug coming out of the back
Dr. Gil Tal, an NCST researcher and director of the Plug-in Hybrid & Electric Vehicle Research Center at ITS-Davis, was quoted in a Capitol Public Radio article about the energy demands of electric vehicles on California’s power grid. Tal stated: “We can have millions of electric cars on today's grid with no problem. We have less than a million today and we can go to three, four, five million without doing any serious upgrades.” California’s power grid will need updates as electric vehicles become more prevalent, but Tal predicts a smooth transition if carried out properly.
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The National Center for Sustainable Transportation is a consortium of leading universities committed to advancing an environmentally sustainable transportation system through cutting-edge research, direct policy engagement, and education of our future leaders. Consortium members: University of California, Davis; University of California, Riverside; University of Southern California; California State University, Long Beach; Georgia Institute of Technology; and the University of Vermont.
 Lauren Iacobucci
Senior Program Manager
Mike Sintetos
Policy Director
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NCST Consortium
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