GAO Report Outlines ITS Benefits
October 16, 2023

Pete Goldin

A September 2023 report from the US Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that ITS results in safety- and congestion-related benefits, as well as some potential environmental benefits.

ITS has also made transportation operations more efficient, enabling state and local officials to manage their roadways with limited staff, according to the report.

The report also found that the benefits were hard to quantify, but even with these limitations, state and local DOT officials were able to describe benefits they had observed from their ITS deployments.

Specific ITS benefits cited in the report include:

■ Improved incident response

■ Reduced crashes

■ Reduced speeds under hazardous conditions

■ Monitoring traffic conditions and clearing lanes more quickly after a crash

■ Improved pedestrian safety

■ Congestion-related benefits such as less time stopped at red lights, less time spent traveling, and improved mobility through a region

■ Reduced transportation-related environmental impacts, including greenhouse gas and other pollutant emissions

Funding is critical to achieving these benefits. The report states, "Most state and local transportation officials cited funding and state and local leadership as factors that influenced — either positively or negatively — the extent to which they were able to realize benefits from ITS deployments."