September 13, 2013
Innovation Implementation: Locally Administered Federal-Aid Projects
Through Every Day Counts, the Federal Highway Administration is advancing a three-part strategy to help local public agencies navigate the complexities of the Federal-Aid Highway Program: stakeholder committees, certification programs and consultant services flexibilities.
Establishing stakeholder committees with federal, state and local representatives can aid the partnering effort among agencies in a state. In addition to improving communication and cooperation, committees can coordinate on such tasks as reviewing project development policies and processes. Florida's Local Agency Program Community of Practice, for example, identifies project development processes that can be streamlined to ensure consistency across the state.
One way FHWA is spreading the word on the EDC approach on local public agencies is by participating in conferences that draw local agency representatives, such as the recent Maryland Association of Counties Summer Conference. About 900 local, state, federal and private sector participants turned out to learn about economic development and tourism in Maryland.
FHWA's exhibit at the conference featured the EDC strategy on locall administered Federal-Aid projects and the Federal-Aid Essentials online video library. FHWA and the Maryland State Highway Administration also promoted on-site training opportunities for local agencies and consultants on Federal-Aid topics, garnering several follow-up requests for presentations.
Mexican Agencies Learn About Traffic Incident Management
The FHWA-sponsored Border Technology Exchange Program conducted a four-hour version of the national traffic incident management responder training course in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, on September 10. FHWA teamed up with the Texas Department of Transportation to offer the course to fire, law enforcement, emergency management and transportation officials from local Mexican entities. Trainers focused on incident scene activities designed to improve responder and motorist safety while effectively clearing crashes.
Connecticut Offers Local Agency Training
The Connecticut Department of Transportation hosted FHWA's two-day Right-of-Way Introductory Course for Local Public Agencies. The August event provided local agency participants with a working knowledge of federal requirements and procedures for acquiring property for federally assisted local transportation projects. Designed as a hands-on experience, the course was customized to incorporate local Connecticut issues and included right-of-way problem-solving exercises and group discussions.
Delaware Implements High-Friction Surface Treatment Specifications
The Delaware Department of Transportation has embraced the use of high-friction surface treatments to improve safety. The agency's first treatment, applied September 5, was on a horizontal curve with a history of wet weather roadway departure crashes. The Delaware DOT plans to use high-friction surface treatments to systematically address roadway departure crashes in horizontal curves and has established a program to advertise for a statewide contract for applying them. FHWA helped the agency develop technical specifications for the contract.
Transportation Secretary Foxx Visits Oklahoma
U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx visited the I-235/I-44 reconstruction project in Oklahoma City, Okla., on August 30. In his remarks to media, he mentioned several technologies from the Every Day Counts toolkit, including the Safety Edge™ and warm-mix asphalt. His primary goal as transportation secretary, Foxx said, is to ensure that America maintains the safest, most efficient transportation system in the world. "Better roads, sooner—that's the kind of success we'll see from coast to coast as more states across the nation adopt more Every Day Counts innovations," he said.
Washington State Showcases Bridge Project
The Washington State Department of Transportation and FHWA held a September 6 showcase on the I-5 Skagit River Bridge replacement project in Bellevue. About 100 transportation professionals heard about plans to slide the new permanent span into place the week of September 9. The new span has been under construction next to the temporary bridge. The bridge collapsed in May when it was struck by an oversized load.
Wisconsin Analyzes Adaptive Signal Control
The Wisconsin Department of Transportation and FHWA conducted an analysis of adaptive signal control technology installed on six intersections in Wauwatosa, Wis. The ASCT systems were the first installed in the Zoo Interchange Integrated Corridor Management effort. The six intersections served as a learning segment for installing, implementing and operating ASCT. The Wisconsin DOT chose the InSync system because it best met the operational requirements of the corridor and was compatible with existing signal equipment.