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Concrete Pavement Technology Update

July 2005

Long-Lasting Pavements: Best Practices Workshops and Presentations for Highway Agencies

Highway agencies and Local/Tribal Technical Assistance Programs can call on CPTP staff to provide state-of-the-practice presentations and workshops on advanced concrete pavement technologies. These sessions can be arranged for State, regional, and industry-sponsored workshops, onsite training, and conferences. Delivered by CPTP staff, the content integrates the latest information gathered from CPTP projects and other advanced programs in design, construction, and repair of concrete pavements.

Presentations are available on 11 topics, and four 2-day, in-depth workshops are available (see sidebar). The specific topics to be included, as well as the format and length of each presentation, are tailored based on advance communication and coordination to meet the needs identified in each State. Typically the workshops attract 40-45 participants from highway agencies and industry. Since mid 2004, CPTP staff have made more than 20 presentations and have conducted 10 best practices workshops across the country.

In April 2005, the FHWA CPTP Task 65 Team presented the Concrete Pavement Best Practices workshop for the Georgia DOT in Forest Park. The new mechanistic-empirical design guide, HIPERPAV, and performance-related specifications are areas somewhat new to the Georgia DOT, according to Allan Childers, ACPA-SE, and the workshop provided a good introduction to each topic. Myron Banks, State concrete engineer in the Construction Division, found the discussion of automatic dowel bar inserters (DBIs) of special interest, since Georgia is considering using DBIs in some upcoming jobs. "Georgia DOT evaluated DBIs in a few installations in the 1970s, but the results were not positive," Banks said. "Now the MIT Scan 2 offers a nondestructive way to evaluate dowel bar placement as the work progresses."

An advantage of the breadth of the Best Practices overview, which runs the gamut from design through rehabilitation, is that agency engineers learn about new developments outside their own specialties. This cross-fertilization increases understanding and coordination throughout a pavement program.

David Painter, of FHWA's Georgia Division Office, said the workshop was excellent. While a good refresher, it also presented information that was new to him. Adding to his understanding in particular, he said, was the in-depth treatment of the micro-behavior of concrete as it cures, where and why stresses develop, how traffic adds additional stresses, and how, from a micro or mechanistic perspective, these stresses result in cracks. Painter also thought the discussion of various cementitious materials and their effect on the curing of concrete was especially valuable. "Many pavement engineers work primarily with asphalt. There is a need for training," he said, "to increase their familiarity and comfort level with concrete. More training and certification are needed in this area."

A new best practices workshop on whitetopping was recently launched in Pomona, California. The workshop incorporates the latest findings, as presented at the April 2005 UTW/TW conference in Denver (see "International Conference on Best Practices for Ultrathin and Thin Whitetoppings").

New Pavement Resource

The Materials and Construction Practices Manual, presenting established field practices and testing methods, is due out in fall 2005. This document draws on a 17-State, pooled-fund study supported by FHWA. For more information, contact Jim Grove (

For More Information

For more details or to schedule a presentation or workshop, contact Sam Tyson, FHWA Office of Pavement Technology:; or Shiraz Tayabji: Requests should be made at least 1 month in advance of the proposed event.

CPTP Presentation Topics
  • Long-Life PCC Pavement Design Features
  • Rapid Repair and Rehabilitation
  • Best Practices for Concrete Pavement Construction
  • Design, Construction, and Repair of Whitetopping
  • High-Performance Concrete Mixtures for Pavements
  • Pavement Texturing Recommendations for PCC Pavements
  • Measuring Pavement Smoothness for Acceptance on Concrete Pavements
  • Construction Management Tools
  • Concrete Durability Issues
  • Optimizing Pavement Joint Details
  • The CPTP Program
CPTP Workshops
  • Concrete Pavement Best Practices—a broad overview for agencies and other groups not having day-to-day involvement with concrete pavement practices.
  • Optimizing Paving Materials and Mix Design—for concrete engineers: major changes in concrete technology, mix optimization to meet local needs, and new testing procedures.
  • Best Practices for Concrete Pavement Construction—new management and inspection strategies for longer lasting pavements.
  • NEWBest Practices for Thin and Ultrathin Whitetopping.

Concrete Pavement R&D Road Map Moves Toward Implementation

In February 2005, a team led by Iowa State University submitted a final draft of the Concrete Pavement (CP) Road Map, including an innovative research management plan, to FHWA. The Long-Term Plan for Concrete Pavement Research and Technology is posted at, and a print version will soon be available.

The CP Road Map was developed through an inclusive process that involved more than 400 stakeholders from across the country at several focused brainstorming events and more than 20 professional conferences and workshops. Although developed for FHWA (under CPTP Task 15), the Road Map is not just a Federal initiative; representatives of all stakeholder groups provided input to the plan, and all stakeholder groups will have roles in implementing it.

Contents of the CP Road Map

The CP Road Map is a long-term (7- to 10-year) plan for research and technology development for portland cement concrete pavements. The plan combines more than 250 research problem statements into 12 fully integrated, sequential, and cohesive tracks of research (see sidebar) that together would cost approximately $250 million in public and private funds.

The 250 research problem statements are included in a database that can be sorted in a variety of ways. Each of the tracks is a complete research program in itself, with its own budget, 2 to 7 subtracks, and as many as 20 problem statements. One subtrack in every phased track is devoted to training tools and methods of technology transfer to ensure that innovative research products move into practice quickly and efficiently.

The first nine tracks consist of timed sequences of research leading to particular products that are essential to reaching overall research goals. Tracks 10, 11, and 12 are not phased because their timing is not as critical.

The Research Management Plan

The research management plan outlines a four-tiered system of participation and responsibility through which public and private organizations can volunteer to identify common interests, partner with one another to leverage funds and human resources, and execute specific contracts.

  1. A three-party executive advisory committee, representing FHWA, State DOTs, and industry, would provide broad oversight and serve as a decision- and policy-making entity.
  2. An administrative support group would provide professional management services for the executive advisory committee. The group would coordinate and support activities such as maintaining the research database.
  3. Team leaders for the research tracks would coordinate and oversee all activities within specific research tracks, such as validating and updating the track, developing broad problem statements into specific research projects, identifying organizations to conduct or partner in the research, and ensuring proper integration of work within the track and across track lines.
  4. Finally, sustaining organizations, including highway agencies, consultants, universities, professional associations, and other organizations that have specialized interests and skills and are interested in pooling dedicated funds, would assume responsibility for conducting research through cooperation, partnerships, and funding agreements. Sustaining organizations would always retain full fiscal and technical control of the work under their jurisdictions.

An in-depth article on the CP Road Map will appear in a 2005 issue of Public Roads (

For More Information

Contact Cheryl Richter, FHWA (, for details on the Road Map. To receive a printed copy of the draft Road Map, contact Peter Kopac, FHWA (

The 12 Research Tracks
  1. Performance-Based Mix Design System
  2. Performance-Based Design Guide for New and Rehabilitated Concrete Pavements
  3. High-Speed Nondestructive Testing and Intelligent Construction Systems
  4. Optimized Surface Characteristics for Safe, Quiet, and Smooth Concrete Pavements
  5. Equipment Automation and Advancements
  6. Innovative Joint Design, Materials, and Construction
  7. High-Speed Rehabilitation and Construction
  8. Long-Life Concrete Pavements
  9. Accelerated and Long-Term Data Collection
  10. Performance of Concrete Pavements
  11. Business Systems and Economics
  12. Advanced Concrete Pavement Materials
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Updated: 02/20/2015

United States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway Administration