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Center for Accelerating Innovation

FHWA Home / OIPD / Accelerating Innovation / State Transportation Innovation Councils (STIC) / STIC Excellence Award

STIC Excellence Award

FHWA's Center of Accelerating Innovation and the AASHTO Innovation Initiative have partnered to promote innovations and to recognize excellence within a STIC. The STIC Excellence Award recognizes a STIC that has made significant impact toward fostering a strong culture for innovation.

2019 STIC Excellence Award Recipients

  • The New Jersey STIC is developing a culture of innovation with broad stakeholder participation, shared metrics, and an engaged leadership. The STIC established processes to identify and move new technologies into practice, including an online portal to solicit potential ideas. The STIC also created three teams—Infrastructure Preservation, Safety, and Mobility and Operations—to champion innovations. A new web page features information on the STIC's innovation initiatives and a searchable innovation database. New Jersey's STIC is advancing unmanned aerial systems for bridge inspection and traffic incident monitoring, including developing guidance and specifications. To improve motorist and responder safety, the STIC is promoting the use of crowdsourcing applications to notify the public where NJDOT Safety Service Patrol vehicles are working on roadsides.
  • The Pennsylvania STIC fosters an innovative culture at all levels of government and throughout the private and nonprofit sectors to ensure smart investments in Pennsylvania's highway infrastructure. The Moving Forward strategic plan, unveiled in 2018, provided the framework to reorganize and rightsize the STIC organization. The STIC consolidated its Technical Advisory Groups (TAGs) from 10 to four—Design, Construction and Materials, Maintenance, and Safety and Traffic Operations—to improve efficiency and enhance collaboration between groups on overlapping innovations. The streamlined structure also provides flexibility to engage a variety of subject matter experts to support a wider range of innovations. The STIC added Innovation Owners and Development Teams to expand participation opportunities, particularly for Pennsylvania Department of Transportation engineering district staff members responsible for deploying innovations. To enhance stakeholder communication, the STIC revamped its website, which features innovation deployment information and an interactive Year-End Report.
  • The Washington STIC is building a culture of innovation through collaboration to update the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) Hydraulics Manual and to develop a programmatic biological assessment with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). These efforts brought local, Federal, and private sector partners to the table to look at how to institutionalize innovations statewide. With STIC Incentive funds, WSDOT revised its Hydraulics Manual to incorporate two-dimensional (2D) hydraulic modeling, fish passage and stream restoration design guidance, and bridge scour methodology to assist State and local hydraulic and design engineers. When erosion occurred around the foundations of the U.S. 101-Elwha River Bridge, for example, WSDOT engineers used 2D modeling to develop scour repair and monitoring strategies until a new bridge is designed and built. WSDOT collaborated with USFWS on a programmatic biological assessment that allows local agencies to streamline Endangered Species Act (ESA) consultations. This approach reduces the ESA consultation timeline on local agency projects from a year to a few months and is expected to be used on at least seven projects in the next year.

2018 STIC Excellence Award Recipients

  • The Colorado STIC conducted activities to enable local agencies to put innovation into practice, including a Local Innovation Implementation Summit organized by the Colorado Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP). After surveying agencies to determine the top five EDC innovations to feature at the summit, the LTAP delivered sessions on safe transportation for every pedestrian, road diets, data-driven safety analysis, pavement preservation, and road weather management. The summit also promoted an equipment loan program for local agencies to support innovation deployment.
  • The Delaware STIC and Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) collaborated on an Innovation Fair to showcase nearly 40 innovations agency staff implemented to improve safety and efficiency, cut costs, and save time. DelDOT, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, and the Government Information Center partnered with Open Data Delaware and TechImpact on the 2018 Open Data Challenge. Through the challenge, teams used transportation, environmental, and recreational datasets to develop apps, including one to make transportation more accessible for persons with disabilities.
  • Since being chartered in 2016, the Texas STIC has engaged a wide range of stakeholders in a large urban and rural State. Using a website, videos, and factsheets to share the STIC’s mission and goals has attracted a diverse network of innovators from local agencies, academia, industry associations, and metropolitan planning organizations. STIC meetings–held in person and by webcast to overcome geographical challenges–typically draw about 70 participants. The STIC chose to implement is a proactive signal control system which has reduced traffic queue lengths by 60 percent and wait times by as much as 50 percent where it was installed. Texas DOT is now implementing this system at 30 intersections in the Houston area.

2017 STIC Excellence Award Recipients

  • The Pennsylvania STIC enhanced dialogue between State and local leaders and promoted state-of-the-art safety practices and resources. The STIC and local governments collaborated on a Salt and Snow Management Course that trained 600 participants on innovative winter maintenance techniques, demonstrated the effectiveness of high-friction surface treatment in high-crash locations, and reached out to 445 local public agencies to understand their top transportation issues.
  • The Wisconsin STIC created a multitiered structure that enabled the State to deploy more than 40 Every Day Counts innovations, seven second Strategic Highway Research Program solutions, and many other innovations. Local Innovation Teams include practitioners who apply innovations on projects and propose ideas. The multidisciplinary Innovation Review Committee collaborates on innovations and identifies paths for rapid deployment.

2016 STIC Excellence Award Recipients

  • The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet created a senior management position to spearhead integration and standardization of innovative processes throughout the state. Use of high-friction surface treatments and the Safety EdgeSM contributed to an 85 percent drop in roadway crashes. An accelerated bridge construction policy encourages continuous innovation on bridge projects.
  • The Massachusetts Department of Transportation formed a READi Committee—for review, evaluate, accelerate and deploy innovation—as a central point for reviewing innovations for deployment. The agency holds an annual Innovation and Tech Transfer Exchange to share the newest ideas in transportation technology. Massachusetts used accelerated bridge construction to replace 14 bridges on I-93 over 10 weekends.
  • The Vermont STIC Executive Council meets monthly to discuss new ideas and technology advances and how they can be used to meet today's challenges. The Vermont STIC holds an annual meeting to brainstorm innovative ideas with participants from industry, municipalities and associations. The Vermont Agency of Transportation established a Performance, Innovation and Excellence Section to lead innovation efforts.
Page last modified on October 10, 2019