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Coordinating, Developing, and Delivering Highway Transportation Innovations

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Publication Number:      Date:  Autumn 1995
Issue No: Vol. 59 No. 2
Date: Autumn 1995


Editor's Notes

Just a few notes to keep you posted on what's inside this issue and what's happening with Public Roads.

What a broad spectrum of subjects!

This issue of Public Roads is a microcosm of the broad spectrum of interests, concerns, and projects that make up the work of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). "California's Temporary Freeway Bridge" is one example of how highway engineers are using innovative, low-tech ideas to solve immediate problems. On the other hand, "Navigating the Future" and "Advantage 1-75" explain how electronic and other high-tech "gadgets" are being used to enhance efficient transportation, and "Navigating the Future" and "Vehicle Compatibility With Roadside Safety Hardware" focus on the transportation uses of technologies originally developed for national defense. "Lessons From the Kobe Quake," "Roundabouts: A Direct Way to Safer Highways," and "Pacific Rim TransTech Conference" are examples of our effective, international partnerships; the application of international research in the United States; and the value of international cooperation. "TQM: It Really Works!" discusses how an office in FHWA is increasing its productivity and saving money exemplary goals as we face a future of constrained resources. Encouraging, recognizing, and "Rewarding Environmental Excellence" is a primary goal of FHWA and is part of the agency's National Strategic Plan 1995. Public Roads addresses the broad range of subjects that are important to the highway community.

We finally did it!

After months of planning and coordinating, Public Roads and the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) initiated our readership survey in July. Many of you have already received, completed, and returned our questionnaire. Thanks! We're anxious to analyze the results and to use your comments to produce a more interesting, useful, and relevant magazine. When the analysis is completed, we will report the results to you in Public Roads.

Now, however, we are still collecting data. The responses to the first mailing of questionnaires are in, and while the response rate was good, the rate was nowhere close to the 80 percent specified by the Office of Management and Budget. So, after Labor Day, GPO sent another copy of the questionnaire to the subscribers who did not respond the first time. With each mailing of the questionnaire, GPO included a card on which every respondent was asked to provide his/her name and address; these cards were to be mailed back to GPO at the same time as, but apart from, the questionnaire. This way even though the individual, completed questionnaires are absolutely confidential we can tell who has and has not responded.

If you received a questionnaire and have not yet completed and returned it, please do it today! Every response is very important to us. We're shooting for a full census of our readers. We seek hard, precise data to guide the development of your magazine. We need to ensure that each subgroup of readers such as the subgroup you represent plays a meaningful part in this process.

Every respondent to either the first or second mailing will be sent a copy of the Federal Highway Administration Research and Technology Program Highlights 1995 report. The "Highlights Report" provides a synopsis of the most significant achievements and activities of the FHWA Research and Technology (R&T) Program in fiscal year 1995. The report also includes an overview of FHWA's approach to R&T and to solving the surface transportation problems of today and tomorrow. Survey respondents will be among a select group of senior officials, including members of Congress on transportation-related committees, to receive this report as soon as it is available (by early January).

Share your ideas!

Public Roads is continuously soliciting direct input and feedback from our readers. Please send your comments about the articles and information presented in the magazine as well as your suggestions for new or follow -on articles. You are our partner in an information exchange. You can share your ideas and opinions by contacting the editor at Public Roads, Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center, Attention: HRD-10, 6300 Georgetown Pike, McLean, VA 22101-2296, or through the FHWA martha.soneira@fhwa.dot.gov. Please provide your telephone number and Internet address. Letters should be less than 250 words. Public Roads reserves the right to determine which letters to the editor will be published and to edit all published letters.

Bob Bryant




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Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center | 6300 Georgetown Pike | McLean, VA | 22101