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Federal Highway Administration > Publications > Focus > January 2001 > A New Generation of Concrete Pavement Technology
January 2001Publication Number: FHWA-RD-01-060

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A New Generation of Concrete Pavement Technology

America's first concrete pavement, a 2.4-m (8-ft) wide strip in Bellefontaine, Ohio, made its debut in 1891. Since then, significant technical and design developments have made concrete paving faster, less expensive, and more durable. Today, however, increased traffic and heavier loads are placing ever greater demands on the Nation's roads. To keep up with these demands, the 1998 Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century provided $30 million to "carry out research on improved methods of using concrete pavement in the construction, reconstruction, and repair of federal-aid highways." The Concrete Pavement Technology Program (CPTP) is the result of this funding.

A new brochure available from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and Innovative Pavement Research Foundation (IPRF), Developing a New Generation of Concrete Pavements, provides readers with an introduction to CPTP. The program is dedicated to research, development, and technology delivery activities aimed at improving the performance and cost-effectiveness of concrete pavements. CPTP's primary goals are:

  • Reducing user delays

  • Reducing user costs

  • Improving performance

  • Fostering innovation

The program is addressing these goals through the development of tools, guidelines, procedures, and software that can be used in the material selection, mix design, pavement design, construction, and operation of concrete pavements.

In the area of reducing user delays, the anticipated products include developing a method for using precast concrete panels to facilitate rapid pavement construction and establishing traffic management guidelines for reconstructing high-volume roadways. Planned products that will help reduce costs include establishing guidelines for applying life-cycle cost analysis to concrete pavements and developing a comparison of the costs and benefits of various design features.

Products that will help improve performance include establishing guidelines for the optimum timing of concrete pavement preventive maintenance, recycling of concrete pavements, and pavement repair and rehabilitation. And in the area of fostering innovation, the program will be developing workshops on pavement smoothness, concrete durability, and pavement design details.

CPTP is being jointly administered by FHWA and IPRF, a concrete paving industry consortium. The program's partners also include State highway agencies and the Transportation Research Board.

To obtain a copy of the brochure, contact Bob Bestold at IPRF, 703-288-8564 (fax: 703-288-8566; email: rbetsold@erols.com), or Steve Forster at FHWA, 202-493-3070 (fax: 202-493-3161; email: steve.forster@fhwa.dot.gov). The brochure is also available on the Web at www.iprf.org/cptp.pdf. For more information on CPTP, contact Suneel Vanikar at FHWA, 202-366-0120 (fax: 202-493-2070; email: suneel.vanikar@fhwa.dot.gov).

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Updated: 04/07/2011

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