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Accelerated Construction Technology Transfer Toolkit

What is ACTT?

Logo: AASHTO Logo: FHWA

FHWA Office of Asset Management
August 2008

Pre-Workshop Meeting

Meeting goals include:

  • Gain a basic understanding of the ACTT process
  • Identify project goals/ objectives
  • Identify appropriate skill sets & discuss national participation
  • Discuss workshop logistics, roles/responsibilities
  • Discuss workshop budget & funding
  • Establish workshop dates & agenda

Overview of ACTT Process

ACTT is a strategic tool that identifies innovative technologies and techniques to help reduce construction time.

  • A structured 3-day workshop is the centerpiece of the process
  • Utilizes skill sets from a national resource pool
  • Teams national experts with local counterparts for brainstorming and discussion
  • Recommendations are documented in a report

A typical ACTT workshop begins with an opening session on the afternoon of the first day, continues with an all-day brainstorming session on the second day, and ends with the presentation of ideas and recommendations by the skill sets on the morning of the third day.

It's especially important to understand the goals and objectives of the ACTT Workshop; reduce overall project duration, accelerate construction. These goals are different from the goals and objectives of a traditional VE Study; Cost saving, reduce life cycle costs.

VE: Local team, typically, small (less than 10 members), limited areas of expertise (design, construction, maintenance, traffic, perhaps, environment and RW), focus is on cost savings (function vs. value), later in the process (maybe during design phase because VE is detail oriented and requires some detail project information).

ACTT: National team (20-30 national transportation experts team up with local counterparts), between 60-80 workshop participants, all areas of expertise (11 skill sets including contracting and financing), primary objective is reducing construction time while enhancing safety and quality. In the long run, it saves money as well, Early in the process (best time is during project development), FHWA and AASHTO fund the workshop.

ACTT Skill Sets

  • Construction
  • Environmental
  • Geotechnical & Materials
  • Innovative Contracting/ Financing
  • Pavement/Maintenance
  • Public Relations
  • RW/Utilities/RR Coordination
  • Roadway Design/Geometrics
  • Structures
  • Traffic Safety/ITS
  • Worker Health and Safety

Skill Sets are selected based on the project’s scope of work and the Department’s needs, and are primary areas of focus. Ken McDonald is the MDSHA Project Manager.

The following skill sets were selected by MDSHA in a May 4, 2007 meeting:

  • Geotech - requesting 1 expert
  • Traffic - requesting 2 experts
  • Structures - requesting 2 experts
  • Roadway - requesting 1 expert
  • Construction - requesting 1 expert
  • Public Relations - requesting 2 experts

MDSHA to confirm skill sets.

For national participation, determine breakdown between nationals (consultants, other state DOTs) and FHWA personnel.

Local construction contractor participation?

Skill Set Team Makeup

  • Facilitator
    • Keeps the Team engaged and focused on project goals, encourages flexibility and innovation
  • Note Taker
    • Captures the Team’s ideas and recommendations electronically with a computer
  • Skill Set Members
    • Collectively search (Brainstorm) for innovative techniques and technologies that can help complete the project Faster, Safer, and with Higher Quality

The Facilitator is also responsible for keeping the skill set group moving forward and on schedule. The facilitator may need to play the referee or bad guy, to make a decision on a discussion point where there is some disagreement and get the group off center moving forward….

The Note Taker: Will take notes using a laptop computer that is provided to each skill set. It’s assume that this person is proficient in typing and has basic knowledge of MicroSoft WORD program. In addition, the Group will be required to develop a presentation using MS PowerPoint program for presenting the Team’s final thoughts and recommendations. This may or may not be the Note Taker’s responsibility.

The Workshop

How will it work?

Opening Session

Day 1, early afternoon, workshop participants assemble as a general group

  • Onsite registration
  • Opening remarks by DOT Management and FHWA Leadership
  • Self introductions
  • Project overview by DOT project manager
  • On-site orientation of the project
    • Bus tour of the project
    • Stop and walk areas of special interest

DOT Project Manager to discuss the contents of the workshop notebook during his project overview presentation. Explanation of the project during bus tour.

Skill Set Breakout Sessions

Day 2, early morning, the Skill Sets Groups will:

  • Convene in individual rooms
  • Engage in roundtable discussion, brainstorm and welcome all ideas
  • Develop and record preliminary ideas & thoughts
  • Prepare a 5 to 7 minute presentation for the report out of "What are we finding" to the General group
    • Verbal presentation using skill set notes, or
    • 3 to 5 slide PowerPoint presentation listing bulleted ideas
  • Identify a Skill Set speaker to present initial ideas and thoughts to the General Group

After short presentations to the general group on ACTT, the flow of Day 2 and how it will work, the ACMT moderators will briefly meet with all skill set facilitators and note takers to review and discuss their roles and responsibilities before the breakout sessions convene. During this time, skill set members can find their individual skill set room and ready themselves for a challenging day ahead.

In the breakout session the group will: Engage in roundtable discussion, Brainstorm and welcome all ideas. Develop and record preliminary ideas & thoughts. Prepare 5 to 7 minute presentation for the report out of "What are we finding" to the General group. And identify a Skill Set speaker to present initial ideas and thoughts to the General Group. This short report out may be Verbal presentation using skill set notes, or 3 to 5 slide PowerPoint presentation listing bulleted ideas.

Skill Set Notes

Accelerated Construction Technology Transfer Workshop
Location: Crowne Plaza New York - LaGuardia
Date: March 22, 2006
Construction Skill Set Notes
Idea
(Short Name)
Idea
(Detailed Description
Implementation Details
(Barriers, Skill Set Coordination, etc.)
1. Optimize construction sequencing and M&PT
  • Weekend closure of ramps at interchanges
  • Keep lanes open at peak times
  • Notify public
  • Temporary directional closures
  • Longer duration temp. lane closures to shorten contract duration
  • Temporary bridges to maintain traffic
  • Examine detours: advertise well, use ITS
  • Incident management system (investigate pull-off areas, have tow truck 24/7)
  • Identify impacts
  • Analyze traffic data on mainline, ramps, and Furman Street (including trucks and at different times of year)
  • Cost/Benefit Analysis
  • Coordinate with Traffic Skill Set
  • Maintain ALL lanes
  • Work with public to accept longer lane closures
2. Innovative materials, equipment, and procedures to speed up construction
  • Fast track concrete (quick cure)
  • Precast deck and pavement panels (maintenance may be problem but speedy)
  • Prefab bridge elements
  • Roll in structures
  • Spec innovative equipment and materials (speedy)
  • Micro piles, light-weight fill (foundation re-use)
  • Composite fiber wrap
  • Mixed results (with quick-set concrete)
  • Problems with precast deck (with superelevations)
  • Precast deck has been used before with success in our area
  • Contractor experience with prefab elements
  • Micro piles are speedy and work within small space
  • Limited experience with composite fiber wrap
3. Advanced Coordination Over Park Property
  • Coordinate with park construction - work with other agencies EARLY to make it work for everyone
  • Maintain lines of communication (with Parks people)
  • Determine timeline relating our project with

On each skill set laptop computer, a recording form template is provided for recording the group’s ideas, thoughts, and recommendations. This screen shot serves as an example of a filled-in recording form, which becomes what I call the skill set notes. It’s important that the notes are concise and well written because these notes will be used in the development of the draft report that will be put together by a consultant contracted by FHWA HQ.

Skill Set Notes

Idea
(Short Name)
Idea
(Detailed Description
Implementation Details
(Barriers, Skill Set Coordination, etc.)
2. Innovative materials, equipment, and procedures to speed up construction
  • Fast track concrete (quick cure)
  • Precast deck and pavement panels (maintenance may be problem but speedy)
  • Prefab bridge elements
  • Roll in structures
  • Spec innovative equipment and materials (speedy)
  • Micro piles, light-weight fill (foundation re-use)
  • Composite fiber wrap
  • Mixed results (with quick-set concrete)
  • Problems with precast deck (with superelevations)
  • Precast deck has been used before with success in our area
  • Contractor experience with prefab elements
  • Micro piles are speedy and work within small space
  • Limited experience with composite fiber wrap

This excerpt is a close up of one construction idea (recommendation) that came out of a past workshop in New York. The Idea Short Name (General Heading) reads Innovative materials, equipment, and procedures to speed up (accelerate) construction equipment. The Idea Detailed Description lists the different construction methods and materials that were recommended. The 3rd column lists the advantages/ disadvantages of using a method or material (and serves as the speakers talking points/ notes in the final recommendation).

Skill Set Report Outs - What are we finding?

Day 2, late morning, all Skill Sets will convene as a General Group:

  • Skill Set speakers from each group will present initial ideas and thoughts to the General Group
  • Presentations are 5 to 7 minutes
  • Take notes on what other Skill Sets are presenting
  • Identify other Skill Sets that you may need to intermingling (consult) with to:
    • discuss ideas and design strategies
    • discuss possible conflicts
    • receive input from specific skill set disciplines

The presentations will be 5 to 7 minutes. This is the opportunity to take some notes on what other skill sets are presenting and to identify the skill sets that you may want to consult with to discuss ideas and design strategies, possible conflicts, and receive input.

Skill Set Intermingling – Breakout Sessions continue

Day 2, early afternoon, after lunch, the Skill Sets will:

  • Reconvene in individual rooms
  • Consolidate, group and prioritize ideas
  • Intermingle with other skill sets as appropriate
  • Finalize descriptions for each idea
  • Identify advantages and barriers towards implementing an idea

The focus now is to prioritize ideas, consult with other skills sets, begin to finalize your descriptions, and identify advantages and barriers towards implementing an idea. The group should be well on its way to pulling its findings and recommendations together. Can have a working lunch?

Prepare Skill Set Presentations

Day 2, late afternoon, the Skill Sets should:

  • Finalize thoughts and skill set notes
  • Wrap up, review findings and recommendations
  • Develop PowerPoint slide show
    • to present findings and recommendations
    • presentation typically 10 to 15 slides
  • Identify a Skill Set speaker to present recommendations to the General Group

By about 4:30 pm, when everyone is becoming tired and worn out, the group should be finalizing its thoughts and skill set notes. In addition, the ppt slide show for presenting the skill set’s findings and recommendations is being developed. A presentation is typically 10 to 15 slides. In developing your ppt, please keep in mind that the speaker will be given 15 minutes to present the skill set findings and recommendations.

Availability of the individual skill set rooms after 5:00 pm for those who would like to continue to work on or refine the presentation. The bottom line is that we must have a final ppt and final skill set notes from each skill set group by 8:15 am tomorrow morning to load on the central computer so that we are ready to begin the report outs at 8:30 am.

Skill Set Recommendations

Day 3, morning activities in brief:

  • Transfer all skill set notes and final presentations to one laptop computer
  • Final skill set recommendations presented to general group
    • 15-minute presentations
    • follow up questions at the end of each presentation
  • DOT feedback on the workshop / closing remarks
  • Workshop closeout - the next steps, development of draft report

As mentioned, final skill set notes and more importantly the ppt, are to be handed over by 8:15 am. You’ll begin to think of me as a pest, or worse, because of my many reminders. It needs to be done to keep things on schedule, and so that we can adjourn by no later than 12:00 pm.

Again, each presentation will be no longer than 15 minutes, and typically we have a little time for a question or two at the end of a presentation. Also, there will be an opportunity to ask questions at the completion of all the presentations.

Workshop Report

  • FHWA HQ consultant develops a draft report from workshop results using skill set notes and final recommendations
  • DOT and FHWA DO to review draft report and provide comments
  • FHWA HQ coordinates final editing and distribution of the report
  • Reports posted on the ACTT website
  • FHWA follow-up survey

Workshop Facility & Supplies

Meeting Rooms:

  • General meeting room large enough for entire group for 3 days
  • Smaller breakout rooms (1 per skill set)
  • Access to breakout rooms after hours

Workshop Facility & Supplies

AV Equipment:

  • Cordless/ remote microphone for intros, general session Q&A
  • One laptop & computer projector for main room
  • One portable printer for main room
  • Business center setup (preferred)
  • One laptop per skill set
  • One computer projector & screen for each skill set (preferred)
  • IT support during workshop

Workshop Facility & Supplies

  • Flip charts, markers, tape for main room and breakout rooms

Catering of food & beverages for:

  • One evening reception
  • 2 continental breakfasts
  • One lunch, one dinner, 3 breaks

Registration booth & package:

  • Name tags
  • Workshop notebook to include workshop agenda, project information, list of attendees, etc.

Workshop Budget & Funding

  • Facility
  • Supplies
  • Meals
  • Travel & per diem
  • Facilitators
  • Documentation/ Reports
  • Local Travel

Next Steps

  • Prepare workshop roster
    • FHWA will generate a skill set matrix for nationals
    • Roster for local attendees
  • Finalize workshop agenda
  • Facility information
  • Invitational traveler package
    • Workshop agenda
    • Facility, lodging and transportation information
    • Summary of project, workshop goals & objectives
  • Identify skill set note keepers
  • Determine need for facilitators
  • Promotional measures?

Identify key contact for workshop coordination

Keys to Success

  • Open Your Mind
  • Respect Your Team Members
  • Respect Other Skill Teams
  • Communicate Freely
  • Ask the Hard Questions
  • Commit to Success
  • Follow Through
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Updated: 10/31/2013
Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000