Improving the Management Practices for Right-of-Way Acquisition Process


Construction Management

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The objective of this project is to identify current management practices developed by various state departments of transportation (DOTs) for right of way (ROW) acquisition and explore possible ways to expedite the process. ROW acquisition is one of the key parts in the preconstruction phase of transportation projects because the construction schedule highly depends on it. However, due to the complex nature of the acquisition process, transportation agencies often face difficulties in acquiring parcels in a timely manner. Therefore, it is necessary to develop management practices to expedite ROW acquisition. A blended qualitative research method is used to achieve the research objective. A survey of and interviews with professionals working in ROW acquisition throughout the nation were conducted. Different approaches in managing ROW acquisition were identified from 36 states. Four areas of current management practices were identified: (1) units in charge of specific ROW tasks, (2) consultant management, (3) performance measurements, and (4) importance of factors considered in setting the ROW acquisition timeline. Suggestions to improve specific acquisition procedures are provided. One key findings is that overall ROW acquisition duration often depends on the performances of regional offices and consultants. Furthermore, the number of parcels to acquire and the need for relocation assistance are considered to be the most significant factors impacting the acquisition timeline. This research contributes to the body of knowledge in improving management practices for ROW acquisition and identifying opportunities to expedite the acquisition process. It is anticipated that the findings of this research will give ROW acquisition practitioners insights on how to improve their management practices and make acquisition more efficient.

Journal Title

Journal of Legal Affairs and Dispute Resolution in Engineering and Construction

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Digital Object Identifier (DOI)