November 5, 2015
Innovation of the Month: Regional Models of Cooperation
The Every Day Counts innovation of the month for November is regional models of cooperation.
These models offer a framework and process for transportation departments, metropolitan planning organizations, transit agencies and other groups to collaborate on multijurisdictional transportation plans.
The Federal Highway Administration is working with the Federal Transit Administration to encourage transportation stakeholders to think beyond traditional borders when planning transportation projects and programs. This EDC-3 effort focuses on bringing entities together to support common goals on topics such as congestion management, safety, freight and commerce.
The EDC Regional Models of Cooperation Innovation Deployment Team offers technical assistance and training, including peer exchanges and workshops. For details, contact Jody McCullough or David Harris at the FHWA Office of Planning or Tonya Holland at the Federal Transit Administration.
View the EDC Regional Models of Cooperation presentation for an overview of the regional models approach.
Arkansas and West Virginia Share e-Construction Knowledge
An e-Construction peer exchange enabled staff of the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department and the West Virginia Department of Transportation to exchange best practices on paperless project management. Discussion topics at the October 21 and 22 exchange in Charleston, West Virginia, included the use of electronic signatures, integration of software tools and data requirement specifications. Both the Arkansas and West Virginia highway industries are well on their way to adopting e-Construction.
Massachusetts Opens Bridge Ahead of Schedule
A November 1 dedication and bridge lighting ceremony marked the completion of the Kenneth F. Burns Memorial Bridge in Worcester, Massachusetts. Finished three-and-a-half months ahead of schedule, the project is one of five major design-build bridge projects in the Massachusetts Department of Transportation’s Accelerated Bridge Program. The project includes a five-span steel deck arch bridge with bicycle and pedestrian accommodations and dedicated turn lanes to improve safety.
Ohio Completes First Lateral Bridge Slide
The Ohio Department of Transportation used slide-in bridge construction for the first time when it replaced a bridge on I-75 over U.S. 6. The operation required closure of U.S. 6 over the October 16 weekend to demolish the existing bridge and slide in the new one while maintaining two lanes of interstate traffic in both directions. The contractor used steel strands and hydraulic jacks to pull the two-span structure into place. Using accelerated bridge construction enabled the Ohio DOT to minimize traffic disruption, improve safety and shorten on-site construction time.
Ohio Highlights Regional Models of Cooperation
A new publication summarizes how agencies in Ohio use regional models of cooperation to coordinate transportation planning. The publication features 11 examples of collaborative, multijurisdictional planning processes and tools used in the state. They include the Connecting Communities initiative to improve coordination between land use and transportation and the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission’s DataSource tool to create maps, charts and other visualizations.
Programmatic Agreements Expedite Reviews in Oklahoma
The Oklahoma Department of Transportation, Oklahoma State Historic Preservation Office and FHWA executed two programmatic agreements to streamline reviews required for construction projects under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act. One agreement streamlines procedures for projects involving structures eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. The other agreement eliminates the need for State Historic Preservation Office review of transportation-related actions during disaster relief efforts.
Utah Uses Story Maps to Make Information Accessible
The Utah Department of Transportation uses story maps as a tool to communicate transportation plans to the public. A story map is a collection of interactive maps, tied to the agency’s UPlan geospatial data collaboration tool, that display information with text descriptions, video clips, photographs, charts and graphs. It’s designed to put technical information in a narrative and visual format to make it meaningful to the public. The Utah DOT is experimenting with story maps to describe the vision and plans for the I-15 and U.S. 40 corridors.
Virginia Conducts Road Diet Workshop
The Virginia Local Technical Assistance Program and FHWA collaborated on a road diet workshop in Roanoke on October 20 for 30 engineers, planners and transportation safety specialists from state and local agencies. Discussion topics included benefits, feasibility and evaluation of road diets. A field exercise enabled participants to use what they learned in the workshop to plan a road diet on Williamson Road. The Virginia LTAP and FHWA plan to offer additional road diet workshops in the state
States Collaborate on e-Construction Research
An e-Construction research project is evaluating the use of mobile technologies for inspecting transportation construction projects. The project includes testing a tablet outfitted with proprietary software and sealed in a weathertight shell so field inspectors can take photos, videos and field observations at the project site and share the information in real time. The Minnesota, Texas and Washington State Departments of Transportation are participating in the project.
See the New Innovator
Read the new issue of Innovator to find out how New Mexico and other states used State Transportation Innovation Council incentive funds on activities to standardize innovations. Also, read about the latest round of Accelerated Innovation Deployment Demonstration awards highway agencies will use to deploy proven technologies and practices to save time, money and lives.