August 3, 2017
Innovation of the Month:
Integrating NEPA and Permitting
The Every Day Counts (EDC) innovation of the month for August is integrating National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and permitting processes, a strategy the Federal Highway Administration in promoting to accelerate the delivery of transportation projects.
Many projects require multiple Federal permits and reviews to ensure agencies build them safely and responsibly and minimize impacts on communities and the environment. But securing those permits can add time and costs to the project delivery process. Concurrent, synchronized environmental and permitting reviews are more effective and efficient, leading to projects with reduced environmental impacts and time and money savings.
Fourteen States and Federal Lands Highway plan to demonstrate and assess tools to integrate NEPA and permitting processes in EDC round four (EDC-4). Another 15 States plan to make integrating NEPA and permitting processes on projects a standard practice.
Watch an EDC-4 summit session recording on integrating NEPA and permitting processes.
Contact Mike Ruth of the FHWA Office of Planning, Environment, and Realty for information and technical assistance.
Washington Explores Innovative Contracting
FHWA conducted a workshop on the construction manager/general contractor (CM/GC) project delivery method in Spokane, WA. The workshop provided participants insight on when, where, why, and how to use the CM/GC delivery method to save time and money on projects. State or local governments that would like to schedule a CM/GC workshop can contact Ken Atkins of the FHWA Resource Center or John Haynes of the FHWA Utah Division.
Wisconsin Adds Road Diet Guidance to Design Manual
FHWA collaborated with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) to advance road diets by providing draft guidance for the agency's Facilities Development Manual (FDM), the primary manual for designers. WisDOT's goal is to expand its existing road diets guidance to include a section that covers more details, such as benefits, common applications, design guidance, and links to additional resources. For information, contact Becky Crowe of the FHWA Office of Safety.
EDC Innovations Deployed on Award-Winning Projects
Transportation projects that used EDC innovations such as design-build project delivery, slide-in bridge construction, and roundabouts are winners in the mid-America regional America's Transportation Awards competition. Sponsored by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, AAA, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the annual competition honors the best transportation projects at the regional and national levels.
- The Kansas Department of Transportation's Johnson County Gateway project—the State's first delivered with design-build contracting—was completed months ahead of schedule. The project included reconstruction and capacity improvements in the I-435, I-35, and K-10 interchange area that cut traffic congestion.
- The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) used design-build on the Columbia I-70 Bridges project. Slide-in bridge construction and dual-lane roundabouts were among the components of the project to replace aging bridges, improve interchanges, and enhance safety.
- MoDOT also won for its U.S. 60 Freeway project near Rogersville. The project, which included construction of a roundabout, improved safety and promoted economic development in a fast-growing part of southwest Missouri.