August 8, 2014
Innovation of the Month:
Significant Impacts of Every Day Counts
Through Every Day Counts, the highway community has created a national innovation deployment network and laid the foundation for a culture committed to innovation. Keys to the initiative's success include its state-based approach and State Transportation Innovation Council model.
Under the STIC concept, each state forms a group of highway community stakeholders to comprehensively and strategically consider all sources of innovation. The STIC model puts the state in the driver's seat to choose innovations that best fit its needs and requirements and put them into practice quickly. It affirms a state's commitment to institutionalize innovations and ensures that innovation deployment will become a long-term business practice.
STICs create a network to exchange information on innovations and encourage their widespread use. As a result of this collaborative approach, the highway community is ready to deploy the next wave of innovations from Every Day Counts, Strategic Highway Research Program 2, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials Innovation Initiative and other sources.
The Federal Highway Administration Center for Accelerating Innovation's new State Transportation Innovation Council web page includes links to resources for STICS.
Pennsylvania STIC Wins Innovation Award
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation took home the Governor's Innovation of the Year Award from the 2014 Innovation Expo, a program that supports innovation in state government. The agency was recognized at the July 22 event for engaging stakeholders in deploying innovation through the Pennsylvania State Transportation Innovation Council. Over the past three years, Pennsylvania's STIC has advanced nearly 25 initiatives that save time and money, improve safety and enhance transportation services.
The Pennsylvania DOT won the award after a competition that included a presentation by STIC leaders, who emphasized the group's national recognition, accomplishments and goal to be better stewards of taxpayer dollars.
The success of Pennsylvania's STIC was recognized at the state's 2014 Innovation Expo.
Photo Credit: Pennsylvania Office of Administration
Maine Signs Programmatic Agreement
The Maine Department of Transportation and FHWA signed an Amended Categorical Exclusion Programmatic Agreement on July 30. The agreement improves the process of documenting categorical exclusions and updates processes, policies and terms to streamline project reviews. The agreement includes the two new categorical exclusions in the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act involving projects in existing operational rights-of-way and receiving less than $5 million in federal funds.
Ohio Tops 10,000 Responders Trained
The Ohio Department of Transportation and Ohio State Highway Patrol have trained more than 10,000 first responders in traffic incident management response. Numerous classroom training sessions have been held since the first train-the-trainer workshop was conducted in September 2012. This training initiative has touched the entire responder community, from law enforcement and fire to towing and public works. The SHRP 2 training can be requested through the Ohio DOT's QuickClear website and Local Technical Assistance Circuit Rider Program, which delivers on-site training to Ohio agencies.
Oregon Sponsors Local Public Agency Peer Exchange
Oregon Department of Transportation and FHWA Oregon Division staff hosted a July 23 and 24 peer exchange on local agency programs for their Colorado counterparts. The Colorado DOT was particularly interested in Oregon's Local Public Agency Certification Program. The purpose of the exchange was for the Colorado DOT to learn about Oregon's administration of the local agency Federal-Aid program and the resources required to implement a certification program. A report documenting the exchange will be developed as a resource for other state DOTs.
Virginia Advances Design-Bid Projects
The Virginia Department of Transportation has issued a request for qualifications for companies interested in submitting bids for a design-build contract for three Route 29 improvement projects. The projects are part of a six-year program to improve mobility and reduce congestion along the Route 29 corridor in the Charlottesville region. The July 24 request for qualifications was a major milestone for the Route 29 Solutions program.
Washington Demonstrates High-Friction Surface Treatment
A July 30 peer exchange in Thurston County, Washington, featured a demonstration of the installation of a high-friction surface treatment. Representatives of local agencies, industry, the Washington State Department of Transportation, FHWA and the Western Federal Lands Highway Division attended the event. The demonstration featured a hand application of high-friction surface treatment by Thurston County crews.