Electronic Theses and Dissertations



Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Civil Engineering

Committee Chair

Michail Gkolias

Committee Member

Sabyasachee Mishra

Committee Member

Charles Camp

Committee Member

Paul J Palazolo


This research underscores the critical role of Tennessee's transportation network, particularly its heavy reliance on trucking along rural roads, in facilitating the movement of goods and significantly impacting the state's economy. It emphasizes the need to comprehend the implications of freight transportation on both urban and rural areas, shedding light on the latter's frequent neglect despite substantial impacts. To bridge this disparity, the research focuses on evaluating and mitigating freight-related impacts in suburban and rural communities. The objective is to identify freight movement hotspots, analyze related externalities, and propose mitigation strategies while considering cost-effectiveness and stakeholder welfare. The study highlights the crucial integration of an equity perspective in transportation planning to understand how freight movement intersects with diverse socio-economic, racial, and demographic factors. The research findings expose notable discrepancies in the impact of freight movement, notably affecting demographic groups like African Americans and Asians. These insights underscore the necessity of embedding equity considerations into transportation policies, aiming for fairness and inclusivity in distributing transportation benefits. Practically, the research serves as a valuable resource for transportation professionals, offering guidance and tools for effective freight movement management and improving community well-being. The comprehensive approach of this research, encompassing an extensive literature review and thorough data analysis at various levels, establishes a robust foundation for future studies and evidence-based decision-making in the domain of freight transportation. Ultimately, the study advocates for an equitable and sustainable freight transportation landscape that maximizes benefits while minimizing adverse impacts.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to ProQuest.


Embargoed until 11/21/2025

Available for download on Friday, November 21, 2025