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Request for Proposals for Long Range Transportation Plan

Request for Proposals
Pala Band of Mission Indians
Long-Range Transportation Plan


The Pala Band of Mission Indians (PBMI), in accordance with tribal procedures, is seeking proposals from qualified contractors and/or individuals to draft and complete the Pala Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP). 

The PBMI is seeking qualified transportation professionals, with both federal and tribal experience to identify and evaluate a complex set of present conditions and future needs commensurate with the Pala Band’s social, economic, cultural and development goals and objectives. 

Proposals submitted in response to this RFP must be received by email no later than March 15, 2022. 

The objectives of this project are to: 

  1. Evaluate existing conditions 
  2. Synthesize all existing relevant planning efforts 
  3. Complete the Pala Long Range Transportation Plan (with associated elements) 
  4. Secure official Bureau of Indian Affairs approval of the LRTP 

The Pala Band of Mission Indians is a federally-recognized Native American tribal government located in California. This project will be funded by the PBMI Tribal government, and Pala has the final say on materials therein. 

Project Scope of Work 

The PBMI’s current LRTP was completed in 1997 – it is 25 years old. 

This project will do the following: 

  1. Synthesize all existing PBMI planning efforts (and plans) related to transportation into the LRTP. 
  2. Conduct novel research which will inform (and possibly be included in) the LRTP.
    1. a. Socioeconomic
    2. b. Growth and Development
    3. c. Land use
    4. d. Multimodal evaluation
    5. e. Pedestrian routes
    6. f. Traffic and Safety evaluations 
  3. Contractor may be requested to attend and participate in meetings with the Tribal Executive Committee, PBMI staff, and community. 
  4. The proposal must show the total cost for labor, travel, supplies, and other necessary costs to complete the project. 
  5. It is anticipated to have the project be completed within 24 months. 

Complete Introduction

Project Information 

Grant Category 

CALTRANS Sustainable Transportation Planning 

Grant Fiscal Year 


Project Title 

Pala Long Range Transportation Plan and Roads Updating 

Organization (legal name) 

Pala Band of Mission Indians 


The 12,772-acre Pala Indian Reservation is a rural community located in northern San Diego County. The county is often misunderstood as completely urban; being California’s 2nd most populous county with 3 million people, it’s an understandable error. Many find it shocking that San Diego County ranks 12th out of California’s 58 counties in agriculture production with a full 76% of the county being rural – this means single lane roads, mountains and brush. 

The Pala Reservation is in just such an area. Imagine a sleepy small California village, no sidewalks, old asphalt and dirt roads, and a tight community – now imagine thousands of vehicles racing home on their commute, large utility trucks crisscrossing streets, and weekend travelers backed up for miles at stop signs. This is the transportation challenge that the Pala Band is facing, and planning is the first hurdle. 

Pala and surrounding areas have major economic enterprises that always have a high concentration of visitors and employees that mostly come from outside of the local area. There are three roads leading in and out of the reservation that are congested with 3 

heavy automobile traffic on a daily basis. There are minimal public transit options, no sidewalks or bike paths, and limited EV infrastructure. The reservation is surrounded by mountains and much of it is within a floodplain. Many roads, bridges and crossings need repair or replacement. 

The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) requires each tribe maintain a “Long Range Transportation Plan” (LRTP) which facilitates the application of money to transportation related projects. The Pala plan was last updated in 1997. This plan was outdated when it was written, and it is now irrelevant. 

Additionally, the tribe lacks the capacity to utilize its recent related plans to prioritize needed projects and get those projects though the initial design phase. Many times, funding opportunities become available to address known needs within the Tribal community, but a long range, comprehensive plan (an initial designs for priority projects) backing up the need, becomes the limiting factor. This LRTP plan will help the Pala Band be more competitive with regards to funding opportunities. 

Due to poor road surface, signage and natural events, the Pala area has sustained over 500 collisions in the last 10 years; some of these collisions have included pedestrians with about 3% being fatalities. The vast majority of these collisions have occurred during times when commuters are using the Pala Village as a “short cut” or in weekend traffic. 

Natural events add to transportation issues; San Diego’s long history of wildfire, for example, is well known. Evacuations of the Pala Reservation are common during these events as are public safety power shutoffs (PSPS) events mandated by SDG&E due to high winds and increased fire danger. 

In 10 of the last 20 years, storm events have contributed to erosion, road surface destruction and flooding of the three main access roads. These roads include low water crossings (or “Arizona crossings”) that flood, preventing evacuations and emergency services and effectively locking residents in. “Arizona crossings” consist of installing pipes or culverts and pouring a descending concrete swale over them to drive over. 

Pala has many effective planning efforts including a FEMA-approved Hazard Mitigation Plan (2021), the 2019 Pala Transportation Safety Plan and the 2020 Active Transportation Needs Assessment. At a regional level, Pala is an active member of the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) Intraregional Tribal Transportation Strategy and Working Group. The Pala Band understands the need for transportation planning and needs a detailed long-range plan to complete the planning process and improve community transportation infrastructure for those who live, work, visit, or pass through the reservation. 4 

In all of its efforts, Pala’s community members and stakeholders helped identify, evaluate, and prioritize their transportation concerns at community meetings. In addition, through work with SANDAG and the Inter-Tribal Transportation Working Group, the Pala Band has called on experts at both Caltrans and the County of San Diego to provide input into transportation risk assessments. 

SANDAG, the County of San Diego and the State of California all agree that the Pala Village is a top tier transportation priority on a regional level. When we overcome these challenges, we will provide greater regional safety and efficiency through safe and sustainable evacuation routes, increased traffic flow, decreased collisions, and long-range planning. 

Consequences of not completing a LRTP include, but are not limited to, stagnated transportation planning; BIA plan expiration; loss of future federally allocated roads maintenance funds; loss of future project funding; continued road closures; increased collisions; increased erosion and road surface decay; and increased safety issues. The result will be a perpetuation of the status quo: outdated plans, unmaintained roads, increased collisions, missed project funding, increased perpetual road closures that result in lack of emergency services and degenerating roadways as traffic increases though the Pala Village. The Pala Band simply does not have the internal capacity to compete this project – which is why the current plan is over 20 years out of date. 

The Pala Band of Mission Indians’ Long-Range Transportation Planning Project will create this new plan, and the main deliverable will be a brand new Long-Range Transportation Plan – which also includes a priority list of transportation projects and preliminary design on the top three projects. 

This plan, its development, completion, and adoption by the BIA is the responsibility of the consultant who is contracted for this work. 

The Pala Long Range Transportation Plan will include: 

  • Prioritized list of transportation improvements (including preliminary designs of the top three improvements) 
  • Socioeconomic evaluation 
  • Growth and development 
  • Land use 
  • Multimodal evaluation 
  • Pedestrian routes 
  • Full integration with all existing Pala transportation efforts and plans 
  • Development of traffic evaluations 

The project will include public involvement activities regarding specific components of the plan including: 

  • Public meetings 
  • Community surveys 
  • Workshops 

The project will include local stakeholders, including Pala, Caltrans and County of San Diego, Southern California Association of Governments (SANDAG), and tribal and non-tribal residents of the Pala Reservation. 


The Pala Band of Mission Indians is committed to improving transportation in and around the reservation. The Tribe has actively engaged with multiple decision and policy-making bodies as well as various studies and safety initiatives. The Pala Band of Mission Indians has been involved with and undertaken the following efforts to promote transportation planning near the reservation: 

  • SANDAG Tribal Transportation Working Group – Pala is a member of the Working Group. 
  • Southern California Tribal Chairmen’s Association (SCTCA) – Regularly attend meetings with regional tribal leadership to promote tribal interests including transportation issues. 
  • SANDAG Borders Committee – Attend meetings to promote tribal interests including transportation issues. 
  • 1997 Pala Reservation Transportation Plan (Transportation Plan) – Pala has completed a Transportation Plan with the BIA. The Transportation Plan identifies existing and future deficiencies in the transportation system for the reservation and outlines specific improvement projects and their priority for implementation.
  • Other safety efforts
    • Tribal Law Enforcement 
    • Providing traffic control at Pala Mission Road and Pala-Temecula Road on Fridays in partnership with CHP 
    • Buckle Up Sign (Caltrans Safety Corridor) ▪ SR 76 as a safety corridor/signage 
    • Preventing Intoxicated Driving along Pala Road 
    • Special Events Safety Message Board 
    • Partnering with the County of San Diego to upgrade crosswalk markings to high-visibility continental striping 
    • Contract with the Sheriff’s Department 

Project Stakeholders 

Pala Environmental Director 

Responsible for overseeing the project and the contracted transportation consultant; the Pala Environmental Director will report back to Executive Committee and Tribal General Council meetings. 

Transportation Consultant 

Responsible for the Long-Range Transportation Plan (LRTP); community survey; community public meetings; GIS components; preliminary designs; topic-based workshops; history gathering; data gathering; accumulation of data into a LRTP; draft LRTP and Final LRTP. 

Natural Resource Planner and Tribal Transportation Manager and Pala GIS Dept. 

Responsible for information gathering for Transportation Consultant; be present at meetings and workshops; GIS components; provide day-to-day assistance as needed from Transportation Consultant 

Finance Department 

Responsible for invoicing; all financial transactions; assist with quarterly reporting. 

Overall Project Goals 

1. The completion of the Pala Long-Range Transportation Plan 

Length of Services 

Contractor is expected to begin work in March 2022. While there is a timeline that retains a February 2024 completion date (full adoption by the PBMI and BIA), it is expected that the work could be completed as much as one year earlier than this date. 

Project Details: 

Summary of Project Tasks 

Project Management activities must be identified within the task they are to occur. 

Task 01: Project Administration 

This is an Administrative Task that shall only be charged against by the Grantee for the Administration of this grant project. Costs for this task cannot exceed 5% of the grant award amount. 

Grantee will manage and administer the grant project according to the Grant Application Guidelines, Regional Planning Handbook, and the executed grant contract between Caltrans and the grantee. 

  • Pala will hold a kick-off meeting with Caltrans staff to discuss grant procedures and project expectations including invoicing, quarterly reporting, and all other relevant project information. Meeting summary will be documented. 

Responsible Party: Pala Environmental Director; Natural Resource Planner; Transportation Manager; Finance Department 

Task Deliverables 

Kick-off meeting with Caltrans – Meeting Notes, quarterly invoices and progress reports, DBE reporting (federal Grants only). 

Task 02: Consultant Procurement 

Grantee will procure a consultant, consistent with: state and federal requirements, Local Assistance Procedures Manual for consultants, the Grant Application Guide, Regional Planning Handbook, and the executed grant contract between Caltrans and the grantee. 

RFP, Interviewing and Hiring of Transportation Consultant 

  • Complete the RFP process (multiple bids) for selection and hiring of a Transportation Consultant; interview and hire consultant. 

Responsible Party: Pala Environmental Director; Executive Committee; Natural Resource Planner; Tribal Transportation Manager. 

Task Deliverables 

Copy of Procurement Policies and Procedures; Copy of RFP; Hiring Documents for Transportation Consultant, Meeting Notes from Project Kick-off with consultant 

Task 1: Existing Conditions 

The consultant will gather and synchronize current related planning and develop an Existing Conditions document which will provide a statement on existing conditions of transportation on which to base the. Additionally, the consultant will produce the below-listed Sections of the LRTP and ancillary documents. (Documents underlined). 8 

Tribal Transportation History 

  • Determine existing state of transportation modes in Pala 
  • Gather Tribal Transportation history; Past Pala Tribal Transportation Plans; Safety Plans, other Land Use Plans. 
  • Begin collecting data and research on components of LRTP: 
  • Introduction and Background 
  • Socioeconomic and Land Use Evaluation 
  • Growth and Development – economic development and land use evaluation to assess economic development sites and opportunities. 

Responsible Party: Transportation Consultant 

Task Deliverables 

Summary of Existing Conditions, Introduction and Background, Socioeconomic and Land Use Evaluation, Growth and Development 

Task 2: Analysis – LRTP 

The consultant will perform all analysis including all transportation related issues and spatial analysis. Consultant will use these results to produce prioritized transportation improvement projects. 

  • Road System Evaluation – Evaluate roadway network for functional operations, maintenance and optimal surface type based on use. Evaluate potential options for surface and maintenance activities. Develop a maintenance schedule and associated budgetary costs for maintaining the roadway network. 
  • Multimodal Evaluation – Evaluate the potential for pedestrian and bicycle accommodation. 
  • Integrate Safety Plan (and all Pala Transportation Efforts) – Evaluate current roadway safety conditions and identify potential safety enhancements for motorist, bicycle and pedestrian accommodation. 
  • Development Traffic Evaluations – Conduct a traffic study to assess needs relating to the existing casino and hotel. 
  • Develop prioritized transportation improvement project list including preliminary designs on the top three projects. 

Responsible Party: Transportation Consultant, Pala GIS 

Task Deliverables 

Summary of Analysis, Road system maintenance estimates, Prioritized list of transportation improvements with weighting. 

Task 3: Public Outreach 

At this stage of the process, the consultant will work together with Pala staff to organize outreach to the public in order to receive feedback and input from those that will use these transportation systems. The consultant will follow best practices in constructing and implementing these workshops and meetings. 

Responsible Party: Transportation Consultant 

Community Public Meetings 

  • Conduct two public meetings (one at project onset; one before completion of Plan (draft of plan completed) to gather information and have active community participation in the process. 

Responsible Party: Transportation Consultant; Pala Environmental Director 

Topic Based Community Workshops 

  • Conduct 3 topic-based community workshops on topics specific to the LRTP content, and growth/development of tribal lands including specific improvements and land use. 

Responsible Party: Transportation Consultant; Pala Environmental Director, Natural Resource Planner 

Executive Committee Updates 

  • Update Executive Committee throughout the project and incorporate EC comments and direction with public comments. 

Responsible Party: Pala Environmental Director; Transportation Consultant 

Task Deliverables 

Community Survey; Survey Data 

PowerPoint Presentations; Meeting summary; photos; invitations 

PowerPoint Presentations; workshop summary; photos 

Memos to Executive Committee; meeting notes 

Task 4: Draft and Final Plan 

This is the final piece to this project. Consultants will produce the penultimate draft for EC and PED approval and edits – consultants will then produce the final draft for EC adoption. 

Draft Long-Range Transportation Plan 

  • Draft Long-Range Transportation Plan based on research; community meetings; community workshops; stakeholder meetings. 
  • Submit entire LRTP to EC for approval. 
  • Revise drafts with direction from EC and PED. 
  • Complete LRTP 
  • Submit complete invoice packages to Caltrans district staff based on milestone completion, quarterly. 

Responsible Party: Transportation Consultant; Pala Environmental Director 

Task Deliverables 

List of comments, Final Plan that includes a summary of next steps towards implementation, credits FHWA, FTA, and/or Caltrans on the cover or title page, submitted to Caltrans in an ADA accessible electronic copy. 

Documentation of Transportation History; notes 

Research documents for LRTP components 

Draft of Final Long-Range Transportation Plan; meeting notes, Roads Inventory Update, 

Examples: Board Agenda, presentation materials, meeting minutes with board acceptance/approval.

Proposal Requirements 

Proposals submitted in response to this RFP must include the following components: 

  1. METHODOLOGY: A clear description of methodology used by the Contractor to complete the Scope of Work and objects describe in this RFP. This must include a breakdown of project tasks with a timeline and budget, both written and within a simple budget table. 
  2. BUDGET: A detailed budget for the length of the project. 
  3. QUALIFICATIONS: A description of the Contractor’s qualifications, which can include a sample of previously completed transportation plans (or similar documents) or a list, with very brief descriptions, of the Contractor’s previously completed comparable documents. The qualifications should also include personnel to be assigned to this project, current partnerships, or other relevant info and resources for transportation assessment and the creation of an associated transportation plan. 
  4. REFERENCES: Appropriate references in the Tribal, public, or private sector who have had similar work completed by the Contractor and might provide input on quality of work, timeliness, etc. 

Proposal submissions that do not include all required components will not be evaluated. All costs for the preparation of the proposal shall be borne by the proposing Contractor. 

Submission Requirements 

Proposals submitted in response to this RFP must be received by PBMI in electronic format no later than March 15, 2022. Proposal submissions must be emailed to Shasta Gaughen, director of the Pala Environmental Department, at 

Ownership of Project Deliverables 

All project work products and deliverables will be owned by the Pala Band of Mission Indians. The Contractor will include Pala’s name and/or logo on work products and deliverables upon request. The Contractor will make all reasonable efforts to communicate to partners, that all of the Contractor’s work under this project is being performed on behalf of the Pala Band. Language to this effect will be included in the contract between the Pala Band and Contractor. 

Project Timeline 

The project must commence no later than May 1, 2022. An earlier start date is preferred. 

The project must be completed and all project expenditures invoiced by February 2024. 

Evaluation Criteria 

The PBMI will consider the following criteria in evaluating the proposals received in response to this RFP. The maximum point value that a proposal can obtain for each criterion is provided in parentheses. 

  • Quality and clarity of the proposed approach including the likelihood of completing the Scope of Work and project objectives in a timely and cost-effective manner (40 points) 
  • Cost and value of the proposed services and work products (20 points) 
  • Qualifications and experience of the Contractor (including the personnel and partners to perform the work) (20 points) 
  • Experience and success (past performance) working on similar projects and with tribal communities, including the Pala Band of Mission Indians (10 points) 
  • Quality of the proposal and proposal communications (e.g. interview) in terms of clarity, organization, conciseness, grammar, spelling, structure, and addressing all the items listed in the RFP (10 points) 

Review and Selection Process 

All submitted proposals will be reviewed and evaluated by PED staff. If additional information or interviews are needed with any proposers during this period, the proposer(s) will be notified in advance. 

The winning proposal will be selected and notified no later than April 15, 2022. Proposals that were not selected will be notified no later than March 30, 2022. 

The PBMI reserves the right to request additional information and/or negotiate any aspect of any submitted proposal during and after the proposal review and selection process. 

The PBMI reserves the right to reject any and all submissions on any basis and without disclosure of reason. The failure to make such a disclosure shall not result in accrual of any right, claim, or cause for action by any unsuccessful proposer against the PBMI. 

Indian Preference 

Indian Preference applies to the award of this contract in accordance with applicable regulations and policies. 

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