Mission, Goals & History
ITI Mission:to promote a global, ethical, seamless intermodal transportation system through educational programs, research projects, and outreach activities; to serve as a "think and do tank" in collaboration with other units at the University of Denver and in partnership with industry, government, academia, and the public; and to support the Mission and Goals of the University of Denver.
The Intermodal Transportation Institute (ITI) was established in 1991 as the University of Denver's Center for Transportation Studies to promote the vision of sustainable transportation systems worldwide. In 1996 the name was changed to reflect more specifically its concern with the development of an intermodal system that was consonant with the goals of sustainability. With major intermodal system expansions underway around the world, with renewable fossil fuels being rapidly consumed, and with environmental and security issues dominant global concerns, transportation needs a new vision, one of an integrated, ethical network that uses the strengths of all modes and minimizes their weaknesses.
Students at the University of Denver, - ITI Board Member Clifford Hardt operates the Mi-Jack Transit while ITI Board Member Tom Finkbiner offers advice. The transit is a gift to ITI from ITI Board Member Jack Lanigan, Sr. (behind Hartdt), inventor of the transit and chairman of Mi-Jack Products, - DIA at dusk. (University of Denver Photography)
ITI is headquartered on the campus of the University of Denver at 2199 South University Boulevard. Denver, the capital city of Colorado and home to the University of Denver, has a long, illustrious history as a transportation crossroads--for road, rail, and air. Since its founding in 1859, Denver has flourished in large part because of its transportation connections and the visionary, pioneering spirit of men like John Evans, who not only founded the University of Denver in 1864 but also built the first rail line to Denver in 1869. This historical trend continued in 1929 with the opening of Stapleton Airport and in 1995 with the completion of Denver International Airport (DIA), the first new airport constructed in the United States in over two decades. DIA, and other transportation infrastructure recently completed, will continue to establish Denver as a strategic, central location for business and trade within the United States and with the countries of the Western Hemisphere, Europe, and the Pacific Rim.
ITI is truly interdisciplinary in terms of faculty expertise and backgrounds. The faculty involved in ITI cut across virtually all academic units of the University of Denver, including business, chemistry, economics, education, engineering, geography, international studies, law, political science, and psychology. ITI offers an interdisciplinary Master of Science degree in Intermodal Transportation Systems that began in Fall 1999. ITI will also be implementing innovative, interdisciplinary executive development and certificate programs in intermodal transportation systems.
ITI is strongly linked to other academic units at the University of Denver. The College of Law provides the only multimodal, and perhaps the most comprehensive, program in transportation law in the United States and, thus, it brings to ITI specialized, committed expertise. Faculty in the College of Law coordinate the well-established Transportation Law Institute and publish the Transportation Law Journal, the only comprehensive law school publication in the field of transportation law. Faculty members in the Department of Geography are actively engaged in research and teaching in air, rail, and urban transportation issues, particularly the geographical significance of regulatory policies. The department also possesses a Geographical Information Systems (GIS) Laboratory where GIS technology is applied to transportation issues.
Faculty in the Daniels College of Business focus attention on transportation logistics, customer service, air quality and transportation policy, alternative fuel production and distribution, and transportation economics and systems analysis. The Graduate School of International Studies (GSIS) offers a well-established International Technology and Management Program in which some students focus on transportation issues. Other programs at the University also allow students the option of specializing in transportation, in conjunction with faculty members at ITI.
ITI combines the substantial faculty expertise and administrative support of the University of Denver with a strong and effective Board of Directors that consists of international leaders and pioneers in the intermodal transportation industry, passenger and freight. The ITI Board is chaired by Gilbert E. Carmichael, formerly the Federal Railroad Administrator in the Bush Administration and currently on the Amtrak Reform Council. ITI is also developing a Colorado Advisory Council, composed of local transportation leaders, to help ITI achieve its mission in the local community.
ITI hosted the three secretaries of transportation from the US, Canada, and Mexico at the North American Intermodal Transportation Summit in October 1997 to find ways to accelerate the development of an intermodal system for North America. ITI also invited senior North American executives from aviation, bus, maritime, rail, and trucking industries as well as third party, customer-shipper, labor, and environmental experts to participate in panel presentations at the Summit. During the Summit, the University of Denver also provided facilities for the private, bilateral, intergovernmental discussions among the three countries.
ITI, in partnership with Mississippi State University, has formed the National Center for Intermodal Transportation under the University Transportation Centers (UTC) Program of the US Department of Transportation. The University of Denver and Mississippi State University were named as a center of excellence for Intermodal Transportation Systems Planning and Assessment in the 1998 Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21).
ITI acquired the 60,000-volume, unique, historical collection of the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) Library in August 1996. The nation's oldest regulatory agency, the ICC regulated the railroad, motor, bus, pipeline, and domestic water carrier industries from 1887-1995. The majority of the volumes in the collection pertain to the railroad industry, but the collection also contains important information on the history of the other modes as well.
ITI received the 3,500-volume US Railway Association Collection from Northwestern University in October 1997. The US Railway Association was created by an act of Congress in 1973 to oversee the development of Conrail and to "solve" the railroad crisis in the Northeast. The association was abolished on 1 January 1987 after the privatization of Conrail. The collection consists of background information on microfilm and court testimony and exhibits in bound volumes.
ITI has an alliance with the National Freight Transportation Library, Inc. (NFTL), whose mission is to preserve the archival, personal, and corporate collections of the freight and passenger transportation industries. With the assistance of NFTL, the ICC and US Railway collections were relocated to Denver with donated transportation and storage facilities. ITI will continue to seek the enhancement of its holdings and the preservation of other specialized transportation collections in collaboration with NFTL.