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Explore all criteria within the four modules of INVEST.

INVEST includes a collection of sustainability best practices, called criteria, intended to help transportation practitioners evaluate programs and projects in the area of sustainability. The goals of INVEST include identifying these criteria, assisting agencies in researching and applying the criteria, and establishing an evaluation method to measure the progress toward more sustainable highway projects.

There are 81 criteria within INVEST organized by module.

  • System Planning for States (SPS) includes sixteen (16) criteria plus one bonus criteria that agencies are eligible for based on their scores on the first three criteria.
  • System Planning for Regions (SPR) includes sixteen (16) criteria plus one bonus criterion that agencies are eligible for based on their scores on the first three criteria.
  • The Project Development (PD) module includes thirty-three (33) criteria that are generally organized from planning to design to construction.
  • The Operations & Maintenance (OM) module includes fourteen (14) criteria including four (4) aimed at internal operations and ten (10) focused on maintenance and operations of the highway system.

Select, from the sidebar on the right, "System Planning for States", "System Planning for Regions", "Project Development", or "Operations and Maintenance" to browse the complete set of criteria that can be used to evaluate a project or program.

What Type of Criteria Does Each Module Contain?

The System Planning for States (SPS) module provides criteria to self-evaluate system-level planning and programming policies, processes, procedures and practices. The SPS module is geared towards States, Tollways and local agencies that perform landscape-scale and corridor-wide planning and that typically own infrastructure.

The System Planning for Regions (SPR) module provides criteria to self-evaluate system-level planning and programming policies, processes, procedures and practices. The SPR module is geared towards Metropolitan Planning Organizations, Council of Governments, or other planning organizations that perform landscape-scale planning for a metropolitan area (and that typically do not own the infrastructure).

The Project Development (PD) module provides criteria to self-evaluate the development of a specific project. It covers activities throughout project-specific planning, design, and construction.

The Operations and Maintenance (OM) module provides criteria to self-evaluate an agency's internal administration and operations and maintenance policies, processes, procedures and practices.

How are Criteria Written?

Each criterion has a write-up that contains the following information:

Title - Corresponding with the title of each criterion is the criterion number, for easy reference, made up of the module designation (SP for System Planning, PD for Project Development, and OM for Operations and Maintenance) followed by a unique number.

Goal - This describes the overall intent of each criterion in a concise statement that reflects the larger concept.

Scorecard Graphic - PD only The scorecard graphic lets the reader know on which of the static scorecards (Paving, Basic Rural, Basic Urban, Extended Rural, or Extended Urban) that the criteria appears. The five scorecard options are shown, with a checkmark in the box to the left if the criterion is part of the scorecard.

Sustainability Linkage - This section describes why each criterion is considered a sustainable best practice by describing how it impacts the triple bottom line principles. Only benefits considered primary and secondary are described, tertiary and other ancillary benefits may be evident but are not included in this linkage.

Affected Triple Bottom Line Graphic - Through the use of colored rings, this graphic indicates how each criterion contributes to sustainability by indicating the primary and secondary impacts to the triple bottom line principles (Social, Environmental, and Economic). A grey ring indicates a non-affected triple bottom line principle.

Scoring Requirements - This section details the requirements of the criterion and the point breakdown structure.

Resources - References in the document are now numbered with superscripts and the reference information is consolidated under the Resources section. In addition, references which are not referenced but may be useful are also included in Resources for many criteria.

Case Studies & Criterion Examples - (Online Criteria Only!) Links to relevant Case Studies and Criterion Examples have been added to the criteria write-ups where their content will help demonstrate achievement of the criterion. This is dynamically updated as case studies are added and is only active for the online criteria write-ups (not the printable versions).

Scoring Sources - This section lists the supporting documentation, such as calculations and reports, needed to validate the score selected for each criterion. These sources may be recorded by using the "Scoring Notes" function or the "Upload Supporting Documents" function in the scoring web-tool.

Follow this link for a graphic that shows basic outline of the criteria write-ups and shows where to find key information.

How many Scorecards are Available?

There is one scorecard each for the SP and OM modules that includes all of the criteria in the respective module. The PD module includes seven options for scorecards, depending on the project type and location.

The seven options for scorecards within the PD module allow INVEST to be relevant to a broad spectrum of project types and project locations. INVEST is designed to enable selection of the project type and location which pre-identifies applicable criteria for consideration. There is also a custom scorecard option, which is a dynamic scorecard. To learn more about the Project Development scorecards, click here.