Last Modified: September 17, 2012

We have just recently introduced the concept of CSS into our department (in 2003). We do not yet have a "program", although we have approximately 11-12 projects that we are using CSS principles on currently. These projects are at different stages and only one project has incorporated CSS principles from the very beginning of the project. We are working to develop TDOT's training for CSS for the entire department and have sent several of our employees from many areas within the department to other CSS training programs.

CSS Contact:

Toks Omishakin
Environment and Planning Bureau
Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT)
505 Deaderick Street
Nashville, TN 37243-0349
(615) 741-2848

DOT Website:


Policies & Legislation:
TDOT has had a formal policy since 2006 by way of a "Statement of Commitment." On our webpage, the statement is there for download:

TDOT has made a commitment to the public through announcements on projects from TDOTメs Commissioner to use the CSS process in approximately 8 projects - but has integrated CSS into many other projects, especially those with a commitment to a thorough public involvement.
Other Public Involvement Techniques:

Our CSS projects are utilizing Resource Teams of stakeholders for each project. These projects will be a source of information and feedback to the public for involvement in the projects. We are also using newsletters, web sites, questionnaires, and even workshops in our public involvement. We are using non-traditional methods such as traveling kiosks and going to elementary schools in order to get particular populations involved.

TDOT has created a good foundation of public involvement techniques to choose from on projects. In light of flexibility and keeping with the "context" of various projects, the department has had some experiences with unique methods such as, "Community Outreach Centers" like the ones use on SR 840 South and SmartFix 40.

They also utilized time-lapse cameras on the website to keep the public updated on the repair to rock slides on key routes, specifically on US 64 in Polk County, which is also a project under development utilizing many CSS Principles

CSS Projects

Because TDOT has made a commitment to utilize CSS principles in some way on ALL projects, it has been increasingly difficult to label which projects are "CSS" and which are not. However, there are some key project examples on the TDOT website that have made special efforts to utilize CSS principles.

CSS Training:

In 2006, TDOT held 2 hour Context Sensitive Solutions Awareness Sessions to introduce the concept to over 700 employees throughout the state. In 2006-7, TDOT developed a 2-Day CSS Overview Training. This course on Context Sensitive Solutions was developed by an interdisciplinary team of TDOT professionals. Because many comparable CSS courses were consulted in the development of the material, this course offers you the “best of the best” with a Tennessee perspective. It not only offers an understanding of the principles and concepts of CSS, but also how it fits within the project development process at TDOT. Although this training is still being taught, it has been delivered to over 230 people, including TDOT employees, consultants, and other partners.

Staff from our project management office, planning, design, community relations, and Environment and Planning offices have been trained through a one-time training opportunity from FHWA by the University of Kentucky (UK). On a specific project, training was provided by UK for the citizens on the project resource team as well as team-building training.

In the future, we hope to first train designers and planners, then to train a cross-section of everyone within the department that deal with projects in some form or another (maintenance to engineers to community relations).
There have been fewer than 50 trained currently including staff from TDOT, FHWA, and consultants. We hope to train many more in the future. We also hope to train consultants through our program with the University of Kentucky.


Transportation Process Alternatives for Tennessee Removing Barriers to Smarter Transportation Investments

The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) and Smart Growth America partnered to find ways in which TDOT can more effectively use its limited resources to create better outcomes. The working team executed a thorough, but fast-paced process that engaged Department staff and community stakeholders from across the state to help formulate a path to removing barriers to better investment. Within this document are the major findings

Last Modified: September 17, 2012

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