November 6th, 2012No Comments, Optimize Mobility, Preserve Infrastructure, Zero Crashes, Injuries and Fatalities, by Catherine Higgins.
The Federal Highways Association has launched new initiatives aimed at making every construction day count.
Utah’s FHWA Administrator James Christian gave an overview of EDC2, an effort to assist states with adopting proven ways to improve the safety, operation and longevity of transportation systems, at the recent UDOT Conference.
EDC2 will promote 13 innovations to transportation agencies and construction and design industries for the next two years. Specialists from FHWA will be deployed to explain and implement the benefits each of the innovations has to stakeholders across the country. UDOT has already participated in some of the innovations, and is a leader in some as well.
One innovation, Intelligent Compaction, was demonstrated in Utah recently. IC systems are similar to regular asphalt pavement compactors but equipped with GPS. As the compactor makes passes over the newly installed asphalt, stiffness measurements are integrated with the GPS information on a display that gives the operator a comprehensive near real-time picture of the compaction process.
The system creates an animated, color-coded online map so the compaction process can be monitored. Although the process measures pavement stiffness, the intent of the project is to correlate stiffness with pavement density using traditional coring testing methods. Density is critical when it comes to longevity of the pavement.
FHWA is reaching out to UDOT and other states to promote another EDC2 innovation, High Friction Surfaces. HFS, usually consisting of an epoxy binder and a non-polishing aggregate, improves roadway skid-resistance in places where motorists need help to brake more effectively. UDOT has applied HFS in two locations in Utah, one in Payson and one in Logan Canyon.
Several states have used HFS and realized an immediate reduction in crashes. Before and after studies that look at crash data, skid resistance, and other factors, will provide the basis for an objective assessment in Utah. UDOT will also monitor how the HFS tolerates weather extremes, traffic and snow plows.
UDOT is an internationally known leader in Accelerated Bridge Technology, one of the EDC2 innovations. Design Build and Construction Manager/General Contractor, contracting methods included in the EDC2 list have been used by UDOT to build high quality projects more quicly and efficiently.
To see a list of all 13 innovations and read more about each, visit the EDC2 website.