Standards Development and Process 

ITE is the lead Standards Development Organization (SDO) for Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Standards with American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials (AASHTO) and National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) as partners and with support from the ITS Joint Program Office (ITS JPO) in the US Department of Transportation’s (U.S. DOT). ITS standards can be broadly categorized as belonging to one of the three groups: Advanced Transportation Controller (ATC), National Transportation Communications and Interface Protocol (NTCIP) or the Traffic Management Data Dictionary (TMDD). 


ITE's Role in the Standards Process

ITE is one of five standards development organizations (SDO) designated by the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) to develop ITS standards under a cooperative agreement with the U.S. DOT.

ITE's activities in the ITS standards process has been geared to address the core questions and issues facing ITE members, including:

  • The effective designing and integrating of ITS standards.
  • Selecting and installing equipment to deliver service efficiently.
  • Compliance by government owners and vendors with environmental and quality standards for temperature, power, humidity, and vibration related to ITS network components so performance will be at par.
  • Setting national standards and guidelines in the following areas to simplify operations and maintenance of ITS networks: field equipment, environmental parameters, quality control, ATMS design criteria, software applications, documentation, and training and education.


ITE Recommended Practices

ITE standards and recommended practices are used by consumers, manufacturers, and suppliers to define their mutual obligations. They are essential for the orderly and efficient conduct of domestic and international commerce and for the protection of the economic, social, environmental, and safety interests of all parties. Standards and recommended practices can favorably or unfavorably affect costs, availability and performance of products and systems. This document is intended to provide procedures whereby the Institute of Transportation Engineers can address this broad purpose of recommended practices while providing a rational and fair basis for the recommended practices so developed.

An important aspect of the development work of the Institute is that all of its standards and recommended practices are advisory only. The Institute has no regulatory authority and no enforcement arm concerning their use. All standards and recommended practices are used and/or applied on substantially public facilities and only have status when officially sanctioned by the governing agency. Their use by public agencies is usually in the interest of safeguarding the welfare and safety of the private users of the product or facilities themselves.

  • ITE Recommended Practices Listing
  • Recommended Practice Development/Update Status
    • Multimodal Transportation Impact Assessment
      Technical Committee is developing content for the new publication.
      Chair: Dan Hardy
      ITE Contact: Douglas E. Noble
    • Preemption of Traffic Signals Near Railroad Crossings
      Review Panel has completed their comments and document returned to Technical Committee for revisions.
      Chair: Tom Lancaster
      ITE Contact: Douglas E. Noble
    • Guidelines for Determining Traffic Signal Change and Clearance Intervals
      Review Panel is assessing responses to comments and revisions to the proposed recommended
      ITE Contact: Douglas E. Noble

ITE Specifications

ITS Professional Capacity Building

ITE in cooperation with USDOT Professional Capacity Building has developed ITS standards training modules and ITS Transit training modules. The 56-module ITS standards training series is for practitioners in state and local highway agencies and transit agencies who seek the skills needed to procure, test, implement, and operate standards-based ITS systems and devices. Consultants, system designers, integrators, and testers will also find the training informative.

The 21-module ITS Transit training series focuses exclusively on standards used in transit applications. Similar to the 56-modules series, the transit modules give practitioners the skills to help them effectively procure and utilize standards used in transit systems and devices. Additionally, they give transportation professionals the skills to help them effectively utilize transit-applicable ITS standards to procure, install, test, and operate ITS technologies.

The training modules mentioned above are available for free at


Professional Development Courses

As a transportation professional, you know that maintaining your knowledge of standards and recommended practices is critical to your professional development and career success. ITE’s Learning Hub is your gateway to training resources to build and develop your skills or refresh existing ones.


Development Process

The Institute of Transportation Engineers has an organizational and participatory structures and processes to promote interaction among interested parties for Institute standards and recommended practices. The procedures linked here are designed to ensure compliance with required standards-making processes and provide the necessary documentation to address any inquiries or noted problems.