The first step in the Section 4(f) Avoidance & Minimization process is the evaluation of avoidance alternatives. Here are some key considerations:

q   Are the alternatives within a reasonable proximity to the
q   Does the documentation discuss alternatives that have
      been eliminated?
q   Has an avoidance alternative that is considered feasible
      and prudent been selected? (Can the project be under-
      taken in accordance with sound engineering principles
      and practices?)
q   Has the determination of an alternative's feasability and
      prudence been established through coordination
      between the DOT and the state transportation agency?

Once it has been determined that no feasible and prudent avoidance alternative exists, minimization efforts should be pursued. Here are some key considerations:

q   Is the alternative that will cause the least harm the one
      that has been selected?
q   Has all possible planning to minimize harm been
      determined through consultation with the official with

Mitigation is the final step of the Avoidance and Minimization process. It involves neither avoidance nor minimization, per se, so much as an effort to compensate for impacts to a project area. Here is the main question to ask about mitigation:

q   Is the cost of mitigation a reasonable public expenditure
      in light of the severity of the impact on the Section 4(f)