Tom HaistWe are thrilled to welcome Tom Haist to our Harrisburg, Pennsylvania office as a senior principal after a 30-year career with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT). Tom will apply his institutional knowledge of access permitting to help both developers and DOTs meet access management goals.

“Tom brings a unique perspective,” said Senior Principal Engineer Glenn Rowe. “He’s a liaison between the legal and engineering aspects of obtaining access for any type of development, and the administrative side of highway occupancy permits. For developers, this means the process can move along as quickly as possible.”

After flying helicopters for the U.S. Army and then running a private law practice in the Seattle area, Tom moved to Pennsylvania in the 1980s and began working for PennDOT in right-of-way acquisition for state highway projects. From there, he got involved in a variety of regulatory programs and developed expertise in access management, working with everyone from residential homeowners to large corporations who needed access to state highways.

By the 1990s, it was becoming more common to link highway improvements to major developments, placing more responsibility on developers to help mitigate traffic impacts. Tom used his knowledge of regulatory practice and right of way to help both developers and PennDOT reach desirable outcomes—for developers, obtaining permits efficiently, and for PennDOT, appropriately addressing congestion and safety.

“I learned how to be a facilitator,” says Tom. “I would put all the pieces of the puzzle together so those projects didn’t end up in litigation or big delays.”

Glenn, who also joined Kittelson after a long career with PennDOT, previously oversaw administration of the Department’s highway occupancy permit program and worked closely with Tom during that time.

“I’ve known Tom for probably 20 years,” recalled Glenn. “He always looked for win-win situations to make sure developers and the department got their overall goals met.”

Tom and Glenn’s combined experience offers developers in Pennsylvania unique institutional insight into PennDOT access permits and their requirements. Tom will also work with the team at Kittelson LLC—a subsidiary of Kittelson & Associates that provides forensic transportation engineering expertise for clients nationwide—on legal aspects of access management. In both roles, he looks forward to finding fresh applications for the skillset he’s built over 30+ years.

“It always excites me to help people, especially with a skillset I’ve already got,” said Tom. “I’ve been away from PennDOT work for about five years. I’m looking forward to being back helping out again and providing a meaningful contribution.”

Please help us extend a warm Kittelson welcome to Tom! He can be reached at thaist@kittelson.com.