Public Administration ETDs

Publication Date



This study examines the Intra-Urban Mass Transportation System. The current, single-mode oriented, national policy of urban transportation is studied and its physical deficiencies and social ramifications are explored. This study relates to public administration in that urbanism is one of the seven “new directions” that Dwight Waldo outlines in his emphasis of professionalism in public administration.

The study was started with the hypothesis statements that there was a need for a national balanced urban transportation policy, and that the acceptance of this policy at a national level is hampered by political problems. These hypothesis statements were shown to be valid, and other aspects of the urban transportation system were revealed.

The approach used in the study was an examination of the existing literature in the field of the policy of urban transportation and correspondence with transportation officials. In the second part of the study a model of the policy-setting process is used. This is to determine the roles of the different levels of governments in setting policy and the effectiveness of the different elements of the governmental levels in setting policy. The Fitch model is used because it deals specifically with urban transportation. The study was designed to provide an account of what is occurring in the policy formation of urban transportation and is done in a manner which will enable others to evaluate the evidence and conclusions.

The single-mode oriented transportation policy was found to be detrimental in terms of social and physical conditions. The local and state levels of governments were found to be dependent on the Federal Government for the development of urban transportation policy.

The Federal Government was found to be ineffective in attaining a balanced transportation policy in terms of the Fitch model. The reason for this is that there has developed a large “highway lobby” that helps to perpetuate the Highway Trust Fund. In the urban transportation area the imbalance of funding of one particular mode of transportation means the imbalance of policy in favor of that mode of transportation.

It was demonstrated that the federal level of government, by means of its systematic means of taxation, can urge policies on the state and local levels. Even though, these are not the policies that the state and local governments desire. Nevertheless, there is an emerging trend in the urban transportation system for officials and citizens of the cities to reject federally imposed policy. Not only are they rejecting the highway funding but they are demanding funding for the implementation of a multi-modal transportation policy.

Degree Name

Public Administration

Level of Degree


Department Name

School of Public Administration

First Committee Member (Chair)

Nicholas L. Henry

Second Committee Member

Frank X. Steggert

Third Committee Member

David Richard Jones

Document Type