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Pavement Preservation Compendium II
Partnering for Pavement Preservation in California
Pavement preservation is receiving a new level of emphasis in California with the formation of the Pavement Preservation Task Group (PPTG). Comprised of representatives from the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), local government, industry, and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the group's goal is to be proactive about promoting pavement preservation initiatives. "Pavement preservation is the most cost-effective approach," says Shakir Shatnawi of Caltrans and co-chair of the task group. "Prevention is like found money."
The PPTG has numerous subtask groups that each focus on a different facet of pavement preservation, including education, innovation, recycling, strategy selection, binders, microsurfacing and slurry seals, chip seals, thin overlays, crack and joint seals, and the integration of pavement preservation with pavement management systems. Each of the subtask groups is co-chaired by Caltrans and industry representatives. "This is truly a partnership where people share expertise and resources and everyone is committed to its success," says Shatnawi.
The PPTG's initiatives to date range from creating technical guides and Web-based training to planning for a State pavement preservation center. The new Caltrans Maintenance Technical Advisory Guide (MTAG), for example, is a comprehensive reference guide on pavement preservation strategies, including materials and application requirements, field guidance and troubleshooting, and strategy selection. The final draft of the guide is available online at http://www.dot.ca.gov/hq/maint/roadway.htm. In addition, the PPTG is working with FHWA to develop a Web-based training and certification course based on the MTAG. This course will be made available to transportation agencies and contractors nationwide. Users will be able to tailor the training to their specific needs. The interactive training is expected to debut late this spring.
Caltrans, FHWA, and industry are also developing training courses on various pavement preservation concepts, strategies, and techniques for State, county, and city workers. "These courses are aimed at pavement workers at all levels, from highly trained engineers to maintenance workers without a technical background," says Shatnawi. Some classes have already been held, with more scheduled in conjunction with the Southern California Pavement Preservation Conference, which will be held April 25-26, 2006, in Diamond Bar, California.
Another PPTG initiative is the development of warranty specifications for construction projects. "With the use of warranties, the contractor takes on more of the risk and responsibility of the project, guaranteeing its life for a predetermined amount of time," says Shatnawi. Caltrans is currently testing the use of warranties with standard, prescriptive specifications, as well as those that are more performance-based, where Caltrans provides the minimum specifications and the contractor is free to add whatever it feels can improve the project.
In the planning stages is the development of a west coast pavement preservation center. The center would focus on such areas as policy, specifications, field investigations, applied research, materials, and training. "This will create a site on the west coast for Western States to share in pavement preservation advances and research," says Jason Dietz of FHWA. Additional new pavement preservation centers being developed for different regions or States include ones in Colorado, Texas, and Louisiana. Partners in these efforts include Texas A&M University and the Texas Transportation Institute and Louisiana State University and the Louisiana Transportation Research Center. Iowa State University's Center for Portland Cement Concrete Pavement Technology is also working to advance concrete pavement preservation.
For more information on California's pavement preservation initiatives or the PPTG, contact Shakir Shatnawi at Caltrans, 916-227-5706 (email: email@example.com), Jason Dietz at FHWA, 916-498-5886 (email: firstname.lastname@example.org), or PPTG co-chair Gary Hildebrand at SemMaterials, 916-798-0455 (email: email@example.com). For more information on the MTAG Web-based training, contact Christopher Newman in FHWA's Office of Asset Management, 202-366-2023 (email: firstname.lastname@example.org).
Reprinted from Focus, January/February 2006