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National Center for Transit Research » NCTR History

NCTR History

In September 1999, NCTR was approved for funding by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Research and Special Programs Administration. The NCTR program builds on the goals and philosophies of the National Urban Transit Institute, which was established at the Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR) at the University of South Florida in Tampa by the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA) of 1991.

Overview of CUTR

  • Emphasis on innovation applied to public policy
  •  Nationally recognized
  • $80+ million in externally funded research
  • 45+ full-time research faculty
  • Multidisciplinary, multimodal focus
  • National Center for Transit Research designation

The Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR), established in 1988, has become recognized nationally and serves as an important resource for policymakers, transportation professionals, the education system, and the public. With emphasis on developing innovative, implementable solutions to transportation problems, CUTR provides high quality, objective transportation expertise in the form of technical support, policy analysis, and research support that translates directly into benefits for its project sponsors.

A significant factor in CUTR’s success and a unique aspect of the Center is the responsiveness resulting from its faculty of full-time employees dedicated to conducting research. The multidisciplinary research staff includes experts in economics, planning, engineering, public policy, and geography who develop comprehensive solutions for all modes of transportation while combining academic and “real world” experience. CUTR conducts nearly $8 million in research annually for a variety of public and private sector sponsors in Florida and the United States, including the Florida Legislature, the Florida Transportation Commission, and state and local governments, agencies, and organizations. Areas of research include public transportation, transportation planning, intelligent transportation systems (ITS), transportation demand management (TDM), transportation economics and finance, geographic information systems, access management, alternative fuels, and transportation safety, among others.

CUTR houses the National Center for Transit Research, designated by the U.S. Congress in 1991 and reaffirmed in 1998 and in 2002, and the National Bus Rapid Transit Institute, sponsored by the Federal Transit Administration. Through NCTR and NBRTI, CUTR conducts research projects in rapidly growing urban areas to develop innovative, pragmatic approaches that will enable public transportation to better meet the evolving needs of U.S. citizens.

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