City of New Orleans Changes Parking Fees and Hours

Finding a parking spot in a dense downtown area is a challenge. In a rainstorm, in a hurry, already late… Often it seems to come down to luck. But maybe the chance of finding a spot can be improved.

Urban planners have studied how parking impacts neighborhoods and communities. And cities have worked to implement solutions. The City of New Orleans recently announced it will be increasing rates for surface parking and expanding times when parkers need to pay for parking in high demand areas.

parking studyWhile a primary goal is to increase city revenue, research in parking behavior indicates that another benefit of increasing parking fees is to increase the parking turnover. Essentially, as parking on the street becomes more expensive, drivers limit their time in any space, and increase parking availability for a finite number of on-street spaces. Additionally, long term parkers adjust their behavior and park further away making closer parking spaces available more frequently for the short-term parker.

Recently, in 2012, TMG prepared a study of best practices for the Urban Land Institute and hosted a forum featuring Professor Donald Schoup of UCLA on how dynamic pricing for on-street parking can increase turnover and improve space availability. In Shoup’s model, parking spaces in high demand have a higher price than parking spaces in low demand and prices adjust throughout the day to reflect the demand. The goal of the Shoup model is to increase turnover in high demand areas/time to ensure that there are always 1-2 parking spaces open at any given time. While higher prices for parking may sound like a bummer for drivers and businesses, Shoup argues it can improve the experience for everyone and help reduce carbon emissions at the same time.
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Current and Future Economic Impacts of Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport

TMG Consulting has been commissioned to update the economic impact analysis for the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport. Our team will work in partnership with Timothy Ryan, Ph.D., distinguished local economist and former Chancellor of the University of New Orleans who conducted the previous economic impact analysis that was completed in 2004.

TMG will utilize the latest available data on expenditures, payroll, and recurring capital investments related to the Airport to determine the Airport’s annual impact on jobs, spending, and tax generation in the region. For this analysis, we will utilize the Regional Input Output Multiplier System (RIMS II) published by the Bureau of Economic Analysis in order to estimate the impact for the New Orleans Metropolitan Statistical Area.

In addition, TMG and Dr. Ryan will also develop a projection of the future economic impact of the new terminal on the North side of the current MSY site announced by Mayor Mitch Landrieu in January 2014 that is scheduled to open in 2018, in time for New Orleans’ tri-centennial celebration.

Portions of the current airport terminal have far exceeded their useful life and have been adapted and repurposed over the years in order to accommodate changes in the aviation industry and TSA security requirements.

Aging Infrastructure of the Current MSY Terminal

Half of the current terminal is over 40 years old (and in some cases, 50 years old.) Source: Crescent City Aviation Team – Long Term Infrastructure Development Plan (April 2013)

Half of the current terminal is over 40 years old (and in some cases, 50 years old.)
Source: Crescent City Aviation Team – Long Term Infrastructure Development Plan (April 2013)

The new terminal will feature a modernized design and increased functionality over the current MSY terminal, with consolidated security checkpoints that will allow passengers to access all concourses after security screenings. Combined access to all concourses is expected to increase the number of concessionaires that are willing to operate at MSY and generate additional revenue for concessionaires due to increased exposure to passenger demand.

Moving the terminal to the North will also allow for repurposing of existing Airport properties on the South side of the MSY site. Reuse of the existing south side properties will also result in additional jobs, earnings, and output for the regional economy.

Proposed Repurposing of South Side MSY Properties

Redevelopment plans have yet to be finalize, but the most recent concepts include additional General Aviation (GA) and Fixed Based Operator (FBO) hangars and facilities, long term parking, mixed use and office buildings, as well as space for air cargo expansion. Source: Jones Lang LaSalle, Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport Land use and Development Services for Long Term Airport Development (January 2014)

Redevelopment plans have yet to be finalize, but the most recent concepts include additional General Aviation (GA) and Fixed Based Operator (FBO) hangars and facilities, long term parking, mixed use and office buildings, as well as space for air cargo expansion.
Source: Jones Lang LaSalle, Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport Land use and Development Services for Long Term Airport Development (January 2014)

In a previous study for the Airport in March 2013, TMG projected that the one-time impact of building the proposed new terminal on the North side along with redevelopment on the South side would result in over 13,000 new construction related jobs for the region.

Conceptual Design for the New MSY Terminal

Source: City of New Orleans (January 2014)

Source: City of New Orleans (January 2014)

We anticipate that the combined impact of all these changes and redevelopment efforts will bring more jobs, more spending, and more tax revenues for the Greater New Orleans Area. Greater economic impact will lead to greater opportunities for local businesses and additional resources for local governments in the region.

Contributed by:

Eric Melancon
Associate
ericmelancon@tmg-consulting.net or 504.569.9239 x 32

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 Disclaimer
The views, interpretations, or strategies expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of TMG Consulting. This site is meant for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. TMG Consulting makes no representation as to accuracy, completeness, or suitability of any information on this site and will not be liable for damages arising from its display or use.

Issues in Airport Perimeter Security

Twelve years after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, airports in the United States and across the world have steadily increased their security measures. Today, most major airports are equipped with hi-tech luggage scanners and full body x-ray machines. Tens of thousands of trained security personnel occupy airport terminals to ensure the safety of passengers. Terminals and passenger concourses are now designed and built or retrofitted to accommodate the extra floor space, loading space, scanning equipment and other requirements necessary for this effort. Consequently, securing commercial air travel throughout the United States has been an expensive endeavor, with the Transportation Security Association (TSA) requesting an $8 billion (or greater) annual budget since 2001.

With the commitment evidenced by these investments over the last decade, airport terminals are safer than ever by every considered metric established to measure the threat. However, airport perimeter security remains the weakest link in the security chain. Federal agencies, such as the TSA and the FAA, need to become more aware of this pressing issue.

Recent perimeter breaches

  • In August 2012, a man unintentionally breached the $100 million sensor-equipped security perimeter at JFK International Airport in New York City after his jet-ski broke down in Jamaica Bay and he swam to land.[1]
  • In February 2013 in Brussels, $50 million worth of diamonds were stolen from an aircraft about to depart by eight men disguised as police who forcefully breached the airport’s security perimeter and performed the heist.[2][r1]
  • In August 2013, a Nigerian boy was found in the wheel well of a commercial aircraft headed to Lagos, Nigeria’s economic capital.[3]

Since 2001, there have been over 1,300 breaches to airport security perimeters in the U.S. alone.[4]

Challenges in Airport Perimeter Security

  1. Geography: Airports are generally on very large, expansive plots of land. It is a daunting and expensive task to successfully maintain fenced perimeters for such large properties.
  2. Expense: Devices such as dedicated sensors along perimeter fencing allow authorities to be alerted of perimeter breaches.  However, these systems must be operable at all times and in all weather conditions to be effective.
  3. Insufficient Regulation: Without specific guidance from the FAA and TSA, airports must work to assess and counter perimeter threats independently. So far, there has been no unifying perimeter security regulation established for the over 450 commercial airports in the United States.

Best Practices for Designing Efficient Airport Perimeters

  • Taller fences, especially ones equipped with barbed wire, provide not only a greater physical barrier but also a greater psychological disincentive.
  • Fencing should protrude well into the ground to prevent trespassers and wildlife from entering the property from the bottom of the fence. This also reinforces the strength of the fence.
  • Limit the number of points of entry into an airport’s property. The fewer gates or guarded entry points, the fewer opportunities a trespasser has to breach the restricted area.
  • Ground-sensor systems are popular solutions to airport perimeter security issues but may not be feasible for smaller commercial airports (due to cost).

TMG experience in airport fencing solutions

In August, 2013, TMG Consulting completed a perimeter security project that was commissioned by Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (LANOIA). TMG provided professional services to replace the Airport’s perimeter fencing and, with its designs, gave recommendations as to how the perimeter fencing could be made more secure and effective. Among TMG’s recommendations were the following:

  • Make the entire fence eight feet tall and extend two feet into the ground where possible.
    • The upgrades to the perimeter fencing should better deter wildlife (LANOIA is in a naturally swampy environment) from breaching the perimeter.
  • Make the fence able to withstand 130 mile per hour winds in the event of a Category 3 hurricane.
  • Redefine the secure perimeter to remove areas that do not need to be included.
    • Over time, some buildings located within the Airport’s perimeter became vacant or demolished.
  • Replace underutilized gates with fencing.
    • Eliminates excessive access points and increases security.
  • Implement better signage to the perimeter fencing.
    • Should discourage accidental perimeter breaches.

While these recommendations are specific to the LANOIA, the methods and analysis that created them can be applied to any facility that requires perimeter security.  TMG excels at creating focused solutions to perimeter security as well as a host of other airport capital planning needs.

Contributed by:  

Jan Garbers

Director of Geomatics

jangarbers@tmg-consulting.net or (504) 569-9239 x25

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 Disclaimer
The views, interpretations, or strategies expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of TMG Consulting. This site is meant for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. TMG Consulting makes no representation as to accuracy, completeness, or suitability of any information on this site and will not be liable for damages arising from its display or use.

[1] Avila, Jim. “Jet Skier Who Exposed JFK Airport’s Security Tried to Get Caught.” ABC News Network, 24 Oct. 2012. Web. 10 Sept. 2013.

[2] Ca Sert, Raf. “Multimillion Dollar Diamond Heist in Brussels.” Associated Press, 19 Feb. 2013. Web. 10 Sept. 2013.

[3] Si, Eno-Aba. “State of Security at Nigerian Airports.” The Guardian, Nigeria, 2 Sept. 2013. Web. 10 Sept. 2013.

[4] US House of Representatives. Office of Congressman William Keating. Perimeter Security: Weakest Link in Airport Safety. N.p., 1 Mar. 2012. Web.


TMG Hosts Career Day with Middle-School Scholars

TMG Consulting recently hosted a team of 8th-grade students from our Mid-City neighbor John Dibert Community School.  Like many of us at their age, the students did not have a clear idea of what they wanted to do when they grow up. Some expressed interest in becoming athletes, musicians, or theatrical performers, seemingly influenced by what they see in the media.

We spent the morning exploring how the fields of engineering and urban planning were woven into the fabric of their daily life activities – from electrical engineers designing cellular phone communication towers to urban planners creating new streetcar routes.

Students learning about the fields of engineering, urban planning, architecture and construction.

Students learning about the fields of engineering, urban planning, architecture and construction.

Students learning about the fields of engineering, urban planning, architecture and construction.

Students learning about the fields of engineering, urban planning, architecture and construction.

With basic tools like a map of New Orleans, colored pencils, and markers, the students programmed their own streetcar routes based on their own points of interests.

One student living on the West Bank proposed creating a streetcar route from his house to school in Mid-City.  The proposed concept required a new trans-Mississippi bridge and significant track infrastructure.  This allowed for a discussion of planning priorities and the challenge of deploying needed services when faced with limited resources, like funding. The team considered how this new route would significantly benefit the larger community.

The students then collectively created a streetcar route to service 30 miles – approximately $600 million of investment in the New Orleans built environment. This then pushed our young urban planners to leverage existing routes to make the most of their allocated miles. They presented their proposed routes to their “client,” our own Mr. Chapman, with flying colors!

The next generation of urban planners designs new streetcar routes.

The next generation of urban planners designs new streetcar routes.

The next generation of urban planners designs new streetcar routes.

The next generation of urban planners designs new streetcar routes.

TMG enjoyed sharing our passion for engineering and urban planning with these students to create a more vibrant city. We had great fun working with these young scholars and shaping the career aspirations of the next generation.

Contributed by:

Mimi Tsai

Feasibility Analyst

mimitsai@tmg-consulting.net  

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Disclaimer
The views, interpretations, or strategies expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of TMG Consulting. This site is meant for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. TMG Consulting makes no representation as to accuracy, completeness, or suitability of any information on this site and will not be liable for damages arising from its display or use.

Superbowl 2013: New Orleans Welcomes Visitors with Improved and Modernized Airport

On January 15, 2013 New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu hosted the official opening of Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport’s Terminal Interior and Exterior Improvements Airport Modernization Program.  This capital program, comprising more than $300 million of infrastructure improvements, was begun before the impact of Hurricane Katrina and successfully completed ahead of a make-or-break event for the city and the region: Super Bowl XLVII at the Mercedes-Benz Super Dome on February 2.

“An expected 42,000 visitors to the city will be greeted and hosted in world-class style with Armstrong’s newly renovated terminal and concourse spaces, windows and lighting, fully reconstructed restrooms throughout the terminal, together with new information displays, baggage claim and security checkpoint upgrades, a new walk-to-rent consolidated rental car facility, rental car service centers and six new gates in a renovated and expanded Concourse D. The Jerome S. Glazer Access Road has just been renovated for a smooth ride direct to Interstate 10.  After their visit, on the way home, there are new landmark local gift and dining venues such as the Saints store and Dooky Chase’s – more than $6 million of improved concessions offerings.  What the visitors won’t see is just as important: a new airfield fire station, rehabilitated airfield pavement and lighting controls, a $30 million state-of-the-art security system and emergency operations center and security fencing.

As significant as all of these improvements are for the visitors, they are lasting investments made for the long term benefit of the community here in South East Louisiana.  And they were all done without taxpayer dollars, with user fees and self-generated airport funds.

TMG Consulting has been assisting the New Orleans Aviation Board in realizing their plans for more than twenty years.  We have been able to advise Armstrong on planning, programing and funding their capital investments.  And we’ve been able to help build our hometown while doing it.  We’re proud of our efforts and those of our partners at Armstrong and throughout the local consultant community.  We’re continuing in our service and excited by the future.  As satisfying as the Airport Modernization Program is, we believe the best is yet to come…

Contributed by:

Ross F. Chapman

Principal

rfc@tmg-consulting.net  

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Disclaimer
The views, interpretations, or strategies expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of TMG Consulting. This site is meant for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. TMG Consulting makes no representation as to accuracy, completeness, or suitability of any information on this site and will not be liable for damages arising from its display or use.

New Orleans Needs to Look Beyond Tourism

In preparation for the 2013 Super Bowl which will be hosted by New Orleans, the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center has donated $30 million to make tourist focused improvements to the French Quarter. Simultaneously, in the legislature, Sen. Edwin Murray has introduced legislation to create a “hospitality zone” which would levy taxes in the superdome and French Quarter area to enhance public safety, sanitation, lighting, and marketing in the area. (more…)

Beyond Recovery: New Orleans Boasts as a Top Destination for Tourists

In 2013, New Orleans will host the NFL Super Bowl, which will be played for the tenth time in the city inside the newly-branded Mercedes Benz Superdome.  Though the game will attract thousands of spectators, it will be a chance for the city to showcase itself to over 100 million television viewers, as it has historically been the most watched television show in U.S. history. The last time New Orleans was broadcast nationally to so many televisions was in the wake of the hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The Super Bowl will be an opportunity to show the world a city that is beyond recovery; New Orleans is a thriving and exciting city.

Final Four crowds at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, March 2012. An estimated 71,000 attended the National Championship Game alone.
Source: Yahoo Sports

Though the city has recovered in many industry sectors, much of this activity can be attributed to the bustling tourism industry. Based on data from the New Orleans Convention and Visitor’s Bureau (NOCVB), 8.75 million visitors came to New Orleans and spent $5.47 billion. (more…)

Career Awareness Day at Warren Easton Charter High School

I was fortunate to be a speaker at the Warren Easton Charter High School Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Career Awareness Day this past Tuesday.  We had more than twenty professionals in various technology, medicine and engineering fields and were able to discuss technical careers with 500 students in grades 9 through 12.  Although it’s strange to be back in an intercity high school after 25 years, I was delighted to be able to discuss the planning field, how I came to work in it, and how my efforts and those of TMG help New Orleans.  More information on the school and it’s incubator lab are at

www.warreneastoncharterhigh.org  and www.e-stemlab.org

Contributed by:

Ross Chapman

Principal

rfc@tmg-consulting.net  or (504) 569-9239 x 27

 
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Disclaimer
The views, interpretations, or strategies expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of TMG Consulting. This site is meant for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. TMG Consulting makes no representation as to accuracy, completeness, or suitability of any information on this site and will not be liable for damages arising from its display or use.

Whirlwind of Development and Opportunities Continue in New Orleans Region

When I moved back to New Orleans from New York City in 2009, I didn’t know what to expect.  Sure, I was excited to be closer to family, have a steady supply of fresh seafood, and be forever rid of my black down jacket. But the anchor of career prospects outside of the tourism and oil & gas industries seemed wishful.  This worry was unfounded because New Orleans and surrounding parishes have been experiencing a whirlwind of development activity, attracting new companies, expanding existing ones, and creating more jobs and wealth in the region. Progress has been especially evident in the past two years and was succinctly summarized at ULI Louisiana’s 4th Annual What’s REALly Going On event.

Representatives from Jefferson, St. Charles, Orleans, and St. Bernard Parishes spoke of their long-term development plans and current projects underway.  One of my favorite projects to hear about was the $60 million NOLA Motorsports Park being built in Avondale in Jefferson Parish.  This sprawling 750-acre facility south of the TPC Louisiana Golf Course is the closest thing to heaven for a speed demon, where adults and kids alike can euphorically zip around the racetrack.  Upon completion, this will be the longest racetrack in North America. Zoom, zoom!

Photo courtesy of http://www.nola.com

In St. Charles, Parish President VJ St. Pierre cited $2.7 billion worth of planned industrial expansion. This includes projects like the Valero Green Diesel Facility and Dow Ethylene Expansion (each estimated to be $400 million), the $238 million Praxair Hydrogen Plant, and the $190 million Air Products Hydrogen Plant.  A good education system and low crime rates which contribute to a high quality of life were a few major reasons convincing companies to expand into the parish.

Hearing the various presenters speak about their strategies and plans to attract new business to their parishes, I couldn’t help but wonder if there might be overlap in efforts and market cannibalization.  After all, we all reside in Louisiana and, while each parish has autonomy over its economic development, our resources would be more effective with greater coordination and organization among all players.  Michael Hecht from GNO, Inc. did note coordination among the parishes and highlighted key industries that the 10-parish Greater New Orleans region is targeting for new investment and development.  Three of the sectors – Advanced Manufacturing, Energy, and International Trade – focus on building on the region’s existing strengths.  The remaining sectors – Software & Digital, BioSciences, and Sustainable Industries – focus on leveraging regional assets to create new, diversified opportunities.

The New Orleans region has attracted a diverse spectrum of companies ranging from Gameloft, the Paris-based video game developer, to Blade Dynamics, the wind turbine manufacturer.

Photo courtesy of http://www.gnoinc.org

I think our country, states, parishes, and individual businesses can learn from GNO, Inc.’s successful use of a strategic analysis to define the region’s strengths which can then be turned into opportunities.  Our firm recently conducted an internal SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis to quantify our collective strengths as a company and to identify opportunities that would complement these strengths.  It was a productive morning where each staff member not only learned an interesting fact or two about another, but gained a clearer idea of areas where we could develop more business.

New Orleans certainly isn’t the place I expected when I arrived in 2009.  It’s better.  The city is humming with activity and being touted as an outstanding place to live and work.  Companies nationally and internationally are noticing our attractiveness and I’m certain we have the tools and leadership to reel them in.  In the midst of all of this positive outreach, though, we need to ensure we are nurturing the companies that already exist in our region.  More on that in my next blog article.

Contributed by:

Mimi Tsai

Feasibility Analyst

mimitsai@tmg-consulting.net  or (504) 569-9239 x 34

 
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Disclaimer
The views, interpretations, or strategies expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of TMG Consulting. This site is meant for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. TMG Consulting makes no representation as to accuracy, completeness, or suitability of any information on this site and will not be liable for damages arising from its display or use.

A Tale of Two Super Cities: Indianapolis and New Orleans

February 7th is the two-hundredth anniversary of Charles Dickens’ birth.  An enduring required reading masterpiece of his, a Tale of Two Cities, considered characters’ lives in London and Paris during the bloodiest days of the French Revolution.

Without much of a segue to justify my title, I offer a Tale of Two Super Bowl Cities, Indianapolis and New Orleans, that’s XLVI and XLVII to sports fans and 2012 and 2013 to planners.  Basically, London and Paris in either nineteenth century or the twenty-first are far more similar than Indy and the Big Easy as venues.

Memorial Circle, the center of Downtown Indianapolis, Photo: TMG Consulting (Left) and Lee Circle, in New Orleans, Photo:exploreneworleans.info (Right).

Though both cities are sufficiently equipped to handle an event like the Super Bowl, they are in stark contrast to each other in almost every other aspect.

1.   Accommodations:  Indianapolis has approximately 6,500 hotel rooms including a brand new JW Marriott with 1,000 rooms.  New Orleans has about 35,000 hotel rooms including almost 1,200 in the freshly rebuilt Hyatt over-looking the Superdome.

JW Mariott in Indianapolis during the 2012 Super Bowl, Photo: LastAngryFan.com (Left); The recently re-opened Hyatt in New Orleans, Photo: TMG Consulting (Right).

2.   Airports: Indianapolis has a brand new, $1 billion Airport with about seven million passengers per year.   New Orleans has a forty-year old terminal with over eight million passengers per year.

3.   Host Experience: Indy just completed hosting its first Super Bowl to many positive reviews for good planning and a successful event.   New Orleans has hosted the Super Bowl nine times before, most recently in 2002, very palpably in the shadow of September 11, 2001.

4.   Activity: The Super Bowl in Indianapolis is the crowning jewel of a rebranding of the city to promote its enthusiasm and involvement in sports, an effort involving acquisition of an NFL team and building two bespoke stadiums. Annually, they are host to the Indianapolis 500 which attracts approximately 300,000 spectators. The Super Bowl in New Orleans will pause Mardi Gras festivities next year.  Mardi Gras attracts over one million revelers annually. Other events hosted throughout the year with huge visitor numbers common in New Orleans are the Sugar Bowl (70,000+), the Final Four (75,000+), Jazz Fest (400,000 +), Essence Fest (400,000+), and the French Quarter Festival (500,000+).

2011 Sugar Bowl, Superdome, New Orleans. Photo: TMG Consulting

5.   Key Industry: While Indianapolis is working to improve their tourism industry while fostering strong corporate business activity. New Orleans has many visitors and, while always seeking to attract more, would welcome the kind of corporate business activity Indianapolis boasts.  In essence, both cities are seeking to further diversify.

Although the challenges are different between a mid-western stalwart city and a world-renowned tourist destination, the logistical and planning challenges associated with delivering a 100,000 plus visitor event are real and critical.  Each year, the NFL flies 1,500 Friends and Families of the competing teams on charter aircraft to and from the Big Game.   Dallas/Fort Worth, the host of Super Bowl XLV, had an additional 40,000 travellers and had to contend with a freak ice storm.

New England Patriots, Charter Flight in Indianapolis, 2012. Photo: TMG Consulting

TMG was able to visit Indianapolis and observe preparations to accommodate heavy aviation demand going to and, most especially, departing the game.  We’re working to assist in planning for a smooth experience for all New Orleans’ visitors come 2013.  We’re committed to making our Super Bowl, like Indy’s, the best of times!

 Contributed by:

Ross Chapman

Principal

rfc@tmg-consulting.net  or (504) 569-9239 x 27

 
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Disclaimer
The views, interpretations, or strategies expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of TMG Consulting. This site is meant for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice. TMG Consulting makes no representation as to accuracy, completeness, or suitability of any information on this site and will not be liable for damages arising from its display or use.