- Briefing Room
U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590
During PY 2012, the Division utilized program and project related activities to identify and determine the state of Indiana’s compliance with Federal requirements. As part of our stewardship and oversight, staff completed various data submissions concerning the NBIS, Highway Performance Monitoring Systems (HPMS) and HSIP. Outlined below is a synopsis of activities in each category.
The Division conducted the following Financial Integrity and Review Evaluation (FIRE) activities:
In addition, staff worked with FHWA Headquarters to assist INDOT on the development of an agreement with American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) on reasonable executive compensation when developing an Architectural and Engineering (A&E) firm’s overhead rate. Staff reviewed and approved INDOT’s submittal for toll credits for FY 2010. In partnership with INDOT, the number of inactive projects was reduced from a total of 583 (as of September 30, 2011) to 168 (as of March 31, 2012), a 71.2% reduction. Also, Indiana’s inactive obligation rate was consistently near or below 1%. Below are charts depicting the number of inactive projects by Tiers, dollar amount, and % of inactive projects monthly during PY 2012:
Chart 1: Monthly Inactives by Dollar Amount
Chart 2: Monthly Inactives by Tier
|Tier 1||Tier 2||Tier 3|
|> $500,000||$50,000-$500,000||< $50,000|
Chart 3: Monthly Inactives by Percentage
The State of Indiana had 66 active ARRA projects and 2 TIGER I (Milton-Madison Bridge and Indianapolis Cultural Trail) projects as of October 2011. As of May 14, 2012, over 96% of Indiana’s ARRA funds and 80% of Indiana’s TIGER I funds had been expended. Staff continued to work with INDOT to expedite the expenditure of the remaining ARRA fund balances and the closing of projects by fall 2013.
The Division conducted and completed all National Review Team (NRT) follow-up activities by December 2011.
LPA Program Oversight
The Division worked extensively with INDOT to improve its LPA project development process. This process was designed to reduce project development time, trim unnecessary steps, complete activities concurrently, and provide procedural training for LPAs and their consultants. This included working in partnership with INDOT on the revision of its LPA Guidance Document and the development of its internal LPA Standard Operating Procedures (SOP). Staff conducted a base line review of the LPA Project Development Process. The findings of this review identified issues with the availability of source documentation, records retention, and INDOT’s ability to produce the necessary project documentation. The findings were presented to INDOT; and it is anticipated that appropriate changes will be incorporated into the revised LPA Guidance Document and SOP to address the findings.
Quarterly Tracking "of Projects"
The Division, in coordination with the Indiana MPOs, included "Quarterly Tracking of Projects" as a planning emphasis area for the state of Indiana. This means each MPO was to develop a procedure for monitoring the local projects in their region on a quarterly basis. To date, the most successful endeavors have brought State, local, metropolitan and consultant staff together to discuss the current costs and schedule estimates for each project; and the results have been outstanding. Project information is more reliably shared between all of the partners and adjustments to the program are better coordinated thru this more frequent and in-person discussion. The Division recommended that INDOT expand this process throughout the entire state. The Quarterly Tracking "of Projects" provides all partners with better information and more opportunities to work together.
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
The Division and INDOT spent most of the year conducting ADA workshops across the State of Indiana, reminding state and local officials of the requirements to have current ADA Transition Plans to remove barriers to accessibility. The Division staff worked extensively with the Indiana MPOs to clarify the Federal requirements and then establish reasonable expectations for demonstrating compliance. In coordination with INDOT and Indiana MPOs, the Division advised that beginning in December 2012, project sponsors that cannot demonstrate they have or are working to complete an update to their ADA Transition Plans may be delayed in advancing projects to construction. This initiative has raised considerable attention and awareness of many officials throughout the state. The Division worked with the MPOs and INDOT to address their questions and concerns. This initiative identified other areas where additional work is needed, such as, how INDOT and the local partners incorporate ADA into State projects that are in local communities. The next step is to more formally require the consideration of ADA Transition Plans as NEPA documents are being developed and completed. The Division recommended staff for a national award for its efforts.
Program Oversight Initiatives (POI)
The Division completed 94% of its PY 2012 POI activities which included recurring and risk-based program reviews, project reviews/inspections, self-assessments, and financial oversight activities. The project review and inspection numbers are outlined below:
Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)
The Division completed the development of the required SOPs by the September 2011 deadline. All the SOPs met the requirements established in the SOP Development Tool for each SOP. Additional SOPs for Manual Travel Authorizations (MTAs), Concurrence in Award, Proprietary Materials Approval, Plans, Specifications, and Estimates (PS&E) Approval, and Design Exceptions Approval were developed. All SOPs had consistent format, consistent and hyperlinked Table of Contents (TOCs), electronic signature, and searchable electronic format (not scanned.)
Louisville Southern Indiana Ohio River Bridges
The Division was lead for Louisville Southern Indiana Ohio River Bridges (LSIORB) Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) providing technical guidance and coordinating FHWA responses to project issues. The Division served as a liaison for FHWA (Indiana and Kentucky Divisions, Headquarters) between INDOT, Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC), and the project consultants. In 2003, the FHWA approved a Record of Decision (ROD) that called for building two new bridges and reconfiguring the Kennedy Interchange. In 2011, cost-saving ideas were found which reduced the overall estimate for the project from $4.1 billion to $2.6 billion, a savings of more than 35%. As required, an SEIS was initiated on Feb. 15, 2011 with the Notice of Intent (NOI); the Draft SEIS was signed on Nov. 10th, 2011; and the Final SEIS was signed on April 20, 2012. The ROD was signed on June 20, 2012. This major project NEPA decision was completed in 16 months.
It is anticipated that the LSIORB portion of the project for which INDOT will procure will be handled as a Public-Private Partnership (P3) with Availability Payments and the Kentucky portion will be procured as a Design-Build project. The Division coordinated with INDOT and FHWA Headquarters on the type of financial agreement that will be needed for this type of procurement as well as the necessary Section 129 Tolling Agreement which will permit the states to collect tolls on the facility.
The Division worked closely with INDOT, the Bloomington/Monroe County MPO, and LPAs to move the I-69 Project forward. The project from Evansville to Indianapolis is part of the congressionally designated I-69 corridor from Port Huron, MI to the Mexican Border in Texas. During PY 2012, the Record of Decision was signed for Section 4 (Crane to IN-37 South of Bloomington) on September 8, 2011. Staff worked with the MPO Policy Board and INDOT to have the construction of Section 4 placed in the Bloomington/Monroe County MPO’s 2012 – 2015 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP), which allowed INDOT to move forward with the advertisement and award of construction within the metropolitan boundary. Currently, Section 4 has an estimated cost of $600.1 million making it a major project under FHWA regulations. As required for major projects, FHWA reviewed and approved the Initial Financial Plan and Project Management Plan on September 26, 2011. To date, construction has begun on five of the nine segments of I-69, Section 4.
We have worked with INDOT and the LPAs on the Tier 2 NEPA document for Section 5, IN-37 to IN-39 near Martinsville. FHWA and INDOT invited the cities and counties along Section 5 to be "participating agencies" for the Tier 2 EIS development.
Division staff continued to conduct oversight and stewardship reviews of design and construction for sections 1, 2, and 3 of I-69.
Sherman Minton Bridge
On September 9, 2011, the Sherman Minton Bridge was closed after a critical crack was found in a main load-bearing structural element. The Sherman Minton Bridge is a double-deck through arch spanning the Ohio River, carrying over 80,000 vehicles per day on I-64 and US-150 between Kentucky and Indiana. The bridge connects the west side of Louisville, Kentucky to downtown New Albany, Indiana. The Indiana Division staff along with experts from FHWA Headquarters, INDOT, KYTC, private engineering firms, and academic institutions participated in determining the severity of the crack and others found on the bridge and determined the best method for moving forward with bridge repair. The Division assisted in developing the comprehensive inspection plan and scenario development for the bridge. The inspection plan was the most comprehensive/aggressive in INDOT’s history. Division staff also assisted in coordinating the expedited review and approval of Federal authorization for the necessary fast track retrofit project(s), which included actions such as limited PS&E review time. Repairs were completed and the Sherman Minton Bridge was reopened at 11:50 pm on February 17, 2012.
US-31 (Hamilton County)
The US-31 (Hamilton County) project has progressed over the last year, with three new contracts let and one construction contract completed. To date, seven of nine planned contracts have been let with awards totaling $65.5 M. The remaining two contracts estimated at $250 million are anticipated to be advertised and awarded in August and October of 2012. During PY 2012, the Indiana Division staff coordinated with INDOT about plans for getting these last two contracts out, which included a Build-Finance option. This coordination also included teleconferences with FHWA headquarters on the requirements for P3 with availability payments and major projects. Further, the Division participated in an INDOT industry forum held on May 16, 2012. INDOT used the forum to gather input on a P3 — Build – Finance option for the larger of the 2 remaining contracts.
As mentioned under the National Leadership section, Indiana is using the Accelerated Bridge Construction to replace the Milton-Madison Bridge, a $103 million Bi-State project between Milton, Kentucky and Madison, Indiana on US-421. The project received $20 million in TIGER I funding to expedite the replacement of this structurally deficient bridge. To date, all of the TIGER I funds have been expended on the project. The Division staff performed site visits to review Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Commercial Useful Function and construction inspections as part of the project oversight.
In April 2012, the KYTC introduced load restrictions on the bridge to three (3) tons due to the deteriorated condition of the existing bridge. Division staff worked with KYTC and INDOT to establish continued monitoring of the existing bridge until the new bridge is in place. As part of this monitoring, the KYTC will be conducting monthly inspections of the bridge’s eight truss members and 34 gusset plates. Division staff participates in bimonthly inspections so that the safety risk for the traveling public can be monitored.
New Harmony Bridge
The New Harmony Bridge carries traffic on Illinois Route 14 and Indiana Route 66 over the Wabash River on the Indiana/Illinois border. The bridge is owned and operated by the White County Bridge Commission (Commission), a congressionally established toll commission created in 1941 “to purchase, maintain, and operate a bridge across the Wabash River.” The 2,700 foot long bridge includes four fracture critical through-truss main spans and various approach spans that also have numerous fracture critical components and unusual fatigue prone details. The bridge carries approximately 900 vehicles per day. In accordance with the National Bridge Inspection Standards, the FHWA required that the bridge be inspected during PY 2012. As the Commission was congressionally established, neither the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) nor INDOT is responsible for ensuring that the Commission complies with the NBIS; but FHWA, IDOT, and INDOT have continuously monitored the structure. On April 25, 2012, as part of the monitoring, the Illinois and Indiana Divisions along with IDOT and INDOT performed a field review of the bridge to observe the special and fracture critical inspections being performed by the consultant inspector hired by the Commission. During that field review, several areas of concern were identified including section loss in critical areas of steel members and concrete spalling of the bearing seat of one of the approach spans. Additional inspections were performed on May 8, 2012 and May 17, 2012. The load rating information from the inspections indicated that the deterioration at several locations on the bridge had resulted in a loss of cross-sectional area and an associated loss of structural capacity. As a result of this information, the Commission chose to close the bridge on May 21, 2012 due to safety concerns after coordination with both FHWA Divisions, IDOT, and INDOT. The Indiana Division is working with the Commission, the Illinois Division, IDOT, and INDOT to determine next steps for the bridge.
The Illiana Expressway is a proposed project that will connect I-55 and I-57 in Illinois, with I-65 in Indiana. The purpose is to improve the flow of freight while also helping to relieve some congestion along local arterials. The Indiana Division has worked in conjunction with the Illinois Division to advance a Tier I Environmental Impact Statement in cooperation with USEPA, the Corps of Engineers, and other federal and State resource agencies. Division staff have participated in several public meetings and have provided project feedback which has helped reduce a wide range of alternative alignments and modes down to three expressway corridors. There are also two MPOs (Chicago and Northwest Indiana) involved in evaluating the proposed project which has required additional coordination on the part of Division staff to address not only impacts of the project within the area of potential effect, but also within the two planning regions.
SR-912/Cline Avenue – Moving towards a P3
SR 912/Cline Avenue, a highway in northwest Indiana near East Chicago, is part of the National Highway System. In the fall of 2011, a major bridge along the highway was closed due to poor condition. The State of Indiana considered a range of alternatives, but local officials’ preference was to replace the existing bridge. Funding was an issue. A private concessionaire approached the communities in northwest Indiana about the potential acquisition of SR 912 and converting it to a tolled facility. The Division met with INDOT to review potential options for allowing for the consideration of a P3. As a result, the Division cleared the way for the SR-912/Cline Avenue Bridge to be advanced as a private P3 Toll Concession. INDOT is now working with the MPO for concurrence on removing the SR 912 from the National Highway System and the National Network for Trucks.
Cultural Trail/Georgia Street/Superbowl XLVI
The Indianapolis Bike/Pedestrian Cultural Trail (Cultural Trail) is a TIGER I funded project to complete a world-class urban bike and pedestrian path that connects neighborhoods, Cultural Districts and entertainment amenities, and serves as the downtown hub for the entire central Indiana greenway system. In addition to the TIGER I funding, the Cultural Trail was made possible by a large public and private collaboration led by Central Indiana Community Foundation, the City of Indianapolis, and several not-for profit organizations. By May 31, 2012, significant portions of the Cultural Trail had been opened to the public and were being used. The Division continued to work with INDOT and the City of Indianapolis to ensure the Cultural Trail is completed in accordance with Federal regulations and provides the city the world-class facility envisioned.
The Georgia Street Improvement Project included the reconstruction of three blocks of Georgia Street from Pennsylvania Street to Capitol Avenue in downtown Indianapolis. Now transformed by a $12.5 million upgrade (80% Federal-aid funds), Georgia Street’s design blends a pedestrian boardwalk, catenary lighting system, landscaping, and more. Georgia Street was converted from a four-lane street with curbs, gutters, and parking along the sidewalk to a two-lane curbless street. Wide pedestrian facilities were constructed in front of buildings with a pedestrian promenade located in the median. Other improvements included bicycle racks, pedestrian way-finding and historical signage, lighting, and alternative drainage systems.
In February 2011, the City of Indianapolis hosted the National Football League (NFL) Superbowl XLVI. Both the Cultural Trail and Georgia Street played a significant role as city visitors maneuvered the City. Debuting as the popular Superbowl Village during the weeklong festivities, Georgia Street's three-block street and walkway connected the Indiana Convention Center, Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Circle Center Mall, a collection of restaurants, residences, hotels, and the historic St. John’s Church. The Cultural Trail and Georgia Street provided access to dining, shopping, and entertainment options.