U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590
ACTT Workshop: Oklahoma
May 25-27, 2004, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Appendix B: Skill Set Descriptions
- Railroad/Utilities Coordination
Utility and railroad delays seriously affect accelerated operations. More innovative solutions are required for both short- and long-term time-sensitive construction projects. Other items to consider are industry responsiveness, incentive-based utility agreements, corridor approaches to utility agreements, contracting for utility work, and non-destructive methods of utility relocation. Close railroad coordination is essential for a project, whether because of the need for construction access or because work being done affects the railroad lines.
Accelerating the construction of structures will require deviation from standard practices for design and construction and include early coordination between designers and contractors. A systems approach from the "ground up" will be necessary instead of emphasis on individual components. Prefabrication, preassembly, incremental launching, lift-in, roll-in, etc., are systems or concepts that have a proven contribution to accelerating construction and should be understood and receive priority consideration. Designers have several options in structure types and materials to meet design requirements, but identifying the most accommodating system while minimizing adverse project impacts should be the objective. Subsurface conditions and issues should be explored to assess their impacts on the project. Based on the geography of the project, subsurface investigation may be complicated by traffic volume, environmental hazards, utilities, railroad property, and right-of-way.
- Innovative Contracting/Financing
Innovative contracting and financing align the financing options with the goals of the project by matching anticipated cash flow with project management, while recognizing competing priorities for existing resources. Financing tools could include cost sharing strategies, tolling mechanisms, contractor financing, leveraging techniques, credit assistance, cost management, and containment concepts. Explore the state-of-the-art in contracting practices and obtain a better knowledge of how these techniques could be selected, organized, and assembled to match the specific situations needed on this project. Techniques to be considered include performance-related specifications, warranties, design/build, maintain, operate, cost + time, partnering escalation agreements, lane rental, incentive/disincentives, value engineering, and any other innovative contracting techniques that would apply to the project.
- Long Life Pavement/Maintenance
It is feasible to acquire pavement designs approaching a 50 to 60 year design life by telling the contractor what is wanted, rather than how to build the pavement. By identifying and communicating the pavement performance goals and objectives for the pavement, the designer and contractor have the maximum freedom to determine the appropriate methodology. Explore the future maintenance issues on the project also, including winter services, traffic operations, preventative maintenance, and any other concerns that may affect the operations of the project features.
- Traffic/ITS/Safety/Public Relations
Enhanced safety and improved traffic management by corridor contracting should be considered. Developing and evaluating contract models may illustrate the best use of incentives to enhance safety and improve traffic flow during and after construction. Evaluating both the construction and maintenance work may help access traffic and safety issues more fully than the conventional project-by-project approach. Better information should be provided to the traveling public and politicians on the relationships among crashes, delays, mobility, total traffic volume, truck traffic volumes, and the need for lane closures during construction. Implement integrated ITS systems to communicate construction information to motorists via radio, the Internet, and wireless alerts, along with incident management systems/services. Use of public relations techniques for informing the traveling public should be implemented, including public Web sites, media campaigns, and periodic press releases.
Scope-of-work and construction activities need to reflect environmental concerns to ensure the most accommodating and cost-effective product, while minimizing any socioeconomic impacts. Context-sensitive design explores opportunities to blend the existing environment with the proposed roadway. Recognizing community, environmental, and aesthetic requirements is essential in urban settings.
Accelerated construction may press the contractor to deliver a quality product in confined time frames and areas, while maintaining traffic. Completion milestones and maintenance and protection of traffic are key elements visible to the traveling public. Allowing contractors to have input on design elements that would affect time or quality during construction can improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the overall project completion. The use of automation to enhance construction equipment performance; construction engineering and surveying; data collection and documentation; and contract administration should be explored and implemented. Pursue options to expedite and facilitate turnaround times in material testing for material acceptance and contractor payment. The use of innovative materials should be explored and encouraged on projects to maximize the creative characteristics of the designer and contractor. By identifying project performance goals and objectives, the designer and contractor have the maximum freedom to determine the appropriate methodology for constructing the project.
- Roadway Design/Geometrics
Highway geometrics can greatly affect project funds and integrity. Although designers may have several options in meeting design standard requirements, identifying the most accommodating product while minimizing adverse impacts should be the objective. Utilizing minimum design standards should be left for extreme cases. Local drainage as well as major crossings can be the driving force behind many design decisions. Significant portions of both construction and maintenance funds are expended for drainage-related items.