Know the lingo
Acronyms abound at MR TMA (Missoula-Ravalli Transportation Management Association)
Illustration by KEN BARNEDT/Missoulian

Missoulian Guide to TMA acronyms

ACO: Acronym Control Officer. The person responsible for developing acronyms. The Missoula Urban Transportation District Glossary actually reads: "A substantial reward is offered for the capture and disposal of this person."

AAA: Area Agency on Aging (or American Automobile Association)

AASHTO: American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials

AAWET: Annual Average Weekend Traffic

AFDC: Alternative Fuels Data Center (or Aid to Families with Dependent Children)

APM: Automated People Mover

APTS: Advanced Public Transportation System. Usually comprised of DPMs or APMs.

AWD: Average Weekday Traffic (or All-Wheel Drive)

CONUS: Continental United States

DPM: Downtown People Mover

EIS: Environmental Impact Statement

FARS: Fatal Accident Reporting System

FONSI: Finding Of No Significant Impact

CTEP: Community Transportation Enhancement Program. Missoula receives about $250,000 a year for road enhancements such as trails, bike lanes and traffic lights. Not to be confused with …

… CMAQ: Congestion, Mitigation and Air Quality program. In the past few years, Missoula has received about $30 million for traffic improvements through this program. The money used to come from …

… ISTEA: Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991, which funded transportation projects nationwide before being replaced by …

… TEA-21: Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century. Montana alone is receiving about $260 million a year from this program.

TEA: Transportation Enhancement Activity. What we do with CTEP money from TEA-21.

HM@FM: Historical Museum At Fort Missoula

LOS: Level Of Service. The standard used to measure how well a road or structure does the things its supposed to do under various conditions. LOS-A means things are going well. LOS-F means everything's jammed.

MDBF: Mean Distance Between Failure

MSA: Metropolitan Statistical Area. The city of Missoula became the third MSA in Montana last year when its population passed the 50,000 mark.

PM: Particulate Matter. The measurement of dust pollution. Missoula recently moved from a PM-10 standard (trying to reduce the level of dust about 10 microns) to a PM-2.5 standard, which is more stringent.

THC: Total Hydro Carbons.

TAME: Tertiary Amyl Methyl Ether

TEAM: Techniques for Effective Alcohol Management

SAP: Substance Abuse Professional, e.g., someone who uses a lot of drugs. Not a TEAM player.

DWI: Driving While Intoxicated. A frequent problem for SAPs

BAT: Breath Alcohol Technician. Frequently found in vicinity of SAP.

BAC: Blood Alcohol Concentration. What a BAT checks.

EBT: Evidential Breath Testing device. What a BAT uses to check an SAP for DWI.

BAIID: Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device. A TEAM response to SAPs.

STP: Surface Transportation Program or Statewide Transportation Planing

STPE: Surface Transportation Program (transportation Enhancements)

STPHS: Surface Transportation Program (Hazard Elimination)

STPP: Surface Transportation Program (Primary)

STPRP: Surface Transportation Program (Railway crossing hazard elimination)

STPS: Surface Transportation Program (Secondary)

STPU: Surface Transportation Program (Urban)

SS: Safety Sensitive

SUPDOC: Superintendent of Documents

SWOT: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats

TAG: Transportation Alternatives Group, or Transportation Acronym Guide

ATD: Anthropomorphic Test Devices

TIGER: Topological Integrated Geographic Encoding and Referencing system

TIRES: Transportation Interface and Reporting System

TOD: Transit-Oriented Design

TPCC: Transportation Policy Coordinating Committee. Missoula's city-county agency for determining transportation spending.

TTAC: Transportation Technical Advisory Committee: The committee that advises TPCC

MR TMA: Missoula-Ravalli Transportation Management Association, funded through TPCC

TDM: Transportation Demand Management. What MR TMA does.

VMT: Vehicle Miles Traveled. What MR TMA wants to reduce by TDM

UGB: Urban Growth Boundary

UGA: Urban Growth Area (Missoula vernacular)

DUSA: Designated Urban Service Area. A policy concept now replaced by the UGA.

UZA: UrbaniZed Area. Not to be confused with a UGA or the Uzi, an Israeli-made machine gun.

VASCAR: Visual Average Speed Computer and Recorder. This is not a speedometer. Nor is it related to …

… NASCAR: National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing

KVETCH: Kneeling Vehicle Emergency Transit Commuter Highway. Don't ask. It's really in the acronym guide, but no one claims knowledge of its purpose.

WOMBATS: WOmen's Mountain Bike and Tea Society

ZEV: Zero Emission Vehicle. Handy for reducing PM 2.5.

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