Comparative Analysis of Transportation Plans and Hazards in the Yosemite Region

Authors: Madeline Brown*, University of California - Merced
Topics: Transportation Geography, Regional Geography
Keywords: Interagency Collaboration, Policy Analysis, Yosemite National Park, Transportation, Qualitative
Session Type: Virtual Paper
Day: 4/7/2021
Start / End Time: 1:30 PM / 2:45 PM
Room: Virtual 7
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

Yosemite National Park has long been a bellwether for National Parks across the United States in conservation, community partnerships, and interagency collaboration. As anthropogenic climate change exacerbates extreme weather events, especially fire in the West, Yosemite National Park and its surrounding communities are in the position to positively influence practices and policies relating to relationships between Parks and gateway communities through understanding existing literal and figurative connectivity, specifically in the transportation realm. The region containing Yosemite National Park spreads across four counties, multiple scales of jurisdiction, and adjacent county, state, and federal lands managers. This presentation, as part of ongoing dissertation research, addresses two questions, “Do agency transportation plans reflect hazards in a dynamic, climate change-driven environment, with plans relating to their respective agency’s guiding policies?” and “What are the limitations to regional collaboration- where are there alignments or misalignments in policies across agencies from county through federal levels?” This qualitative analysis and related research will explain how fundamental differences in agency policy lead to transportation and hazard-based constraints reflected in the built environment. The project utilizes policy analysis and several specific events, such as the Ferguson Rockslide, to identify areas of divergence and convergence in plan content and structure, which may be used to inform agencies at future iterations of plan updates. Identified points of divergence may be utilized by agencies seeking to improve their collaborative efforts. Agencies may utilize findings to center future transportation plans on ongoing climate change in an adaptive and collaborative capacity.

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