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Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-04-027
Date: July 2004
Call it the LRFD revolution. At least 46 States have fully or partially implemented the Load and Resistance Factor Design (LRFD) Specification for bridges, or are working with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to develop LRFD implementation plans. This represents a giant leap from last year, when about half of States had not yet begun LRFD implementation.
The goal of learning more about bridge system preservation and maintenance processes and technologies used abroad brought an international technology scanning tour panel to Europe, Scandinavia, and Africa from March 28 to April 13, 2003. Sponsored by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the tour featured 10 participants representing AASHTO, FHWA, State and local transportation agencies, and academia.
Improving the state-of-the-art for the design and construction of steel bridges brought 30 representatives from States, industry, and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) together in December 2003 for an inaugural partnership meeting at FHWA's Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center in McLean, Virginia. "The main focus of the meeting was to get participants' ideas on how we can improve the design and construction of steel bridges, and the input received was very valuable," says Vasant Mistry of FHWA.
Meet the new star of the summer road. Developed by the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), the Balsi Beam is a mobile work protection system that uses a modified semi-trailer that is transported by a tractor (see January/February 2004 Focus). The system hit the road recently to visit numerous States on its way to and from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Maintenance Conference in Bismarck, North Dakota.
The successful use of an innovative contracting strategy is helping the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) and Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) ensure the timely completion of Virginia's Springfield Interchange project, also known as the "Mixing Bowl."
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