Under the guidance of the NJTPA Board, the staffs of NJIT, CUPR, and NJTPA agreed on the objectives for the new system, and, in 1996, the consortium unveiled TELUS: Transportation, Economic & Land Use System.
The version of the TELUS software developed for the NJTPA included five components: (1) an automated TIP component containing basic information about each project; (2) an input-output model estimating project impacts on the number of jobs, per capita income, gross regional product, and tax revenues at the local, State, and Federal levels; (3) a property-value model estimating the impact of projects on the value of adjacent properties; (4) a project-interrelationships component identifying potential conflicts among projects; and (5) a geographic information system (GIS) reader.
In 1998, with the passage of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21), the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), knowing that many MPOs had a need similar to that of the NJTPA, provided support to modify TELUS for nationwide distribution.
As the federally-sanctioned metropolitan planning organization for the northern New Jersey region, the NJTPA evaluates and approves proposed transportation projects for the region and serves as a forum for interagency cooperation and public participation in transportation funding decisions.
The NJTPA board has already heard public presentations from Conrail and from Norfolk Southern.