Missouri Investigates Bat-Sensitive Maintenance Strategies for Bridges and Culverts June 27, 2023 - Many bat species, including those that are threatened or endangered, make their homes in bridges and culverts, which can affect maintenance and repair activities. To learn strategies for detecting, deterring and relocating bats from these structures temporarily, the Missouri Department of Transportation initiated a research study aimed at better understanding sensitive management tactics. The research compiled knowledge about the habits of different kinds of bats, and the tools, technologies and best practices that other states and federal transportation agencies use when performing maintenance on structures with bat populations.
Louisiana Evaluates Materials for Reducing Roadway Edge Drop-Offs June 21, 2023 - Frequent road-edge maintenance is critical for preventing ruts and drop-offs that can be unsafe for the traveling public. To identify materials that are stable, durable and widely available for use along a road’s edge, the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development evaluated a variety of reclaimed asphalt mixtures and additives. The research resulted in cost-effective material recommendations and strategies for improving the performance of road shoulders, as well as a method for identifying problematic areas so they can be proactively addressed to increase safety.
Oregon Investigates Effects of Centerline Rumble Strips on Pavement Durability June 13, 2023 - Rumble strips milled into the centerline of a roadway provide an audible and vibratory alert when a driver crosses into oncoming traffic, reducing crashes and injuries. While rumble strips have an established record of increasing safety, pavements that have them are more likely to develop cracks. To improve the performance of pavements with centerline rumble strips, the Oregon Department of Transportation initiated a research project to develop better installation methods as well as innovative maintenance strategies to reduce cracking and increase the long-term durability of these pavements.
Minnesota Develops Decision Tool for Pavement Markings June 7, 2023 - When applying new or replacement pavement markings, maintenance crews have a variety of issues to consider such as marking materials, surface type and location. To help Minnesota’s state and local transportation agencies understand their options and make informed decisions, the Minnesota Department of Transportation and Local Road Research Board developed an online pavement marking decision tree.
Minnesota Explores Feasibility of Solar Power for Highway Signs and Lights in Remote Areas June 6, 2023 - Illuminating highway signs, lights and traffic signals usually requires power from a commercial electrical grid. Remote areas, however, may not have access to this power source. To better understand the costs and other considerations associated with solar-powered systems, the Minnesota Department of Transportation initiated a synthesis project to evaluate products and their effectiveness and costs, as well as a case study detailing a Minnesota county’s experiences with solar-powered traffic control devices.
Utah Develops Culvert Inspection Manual and Method for Estimating Deterioration May 30, 2023 - Routinely inspecting and maintaining culverts are important for keeping infrastructure performing well. As part of a new statewide culvert management system, the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) developed a culvert inspection and asset management manual, as well as an algorithm for predicting the maintenance and repair needs of the 47,000 culverts across the state.
Minnesota Synthesizes Guidance and Best Practices for Treating Asphalt Cracks May 23, 2023 - Of the many practices available to preserve asphalt pavement service life, crack filling and sealing treatments are among the most commonly used. Understanding which treatments are appropriate for different types of cracks, however, as well as best practices for applying the right treatment, can be challenging. To help inform and simplify the decision-making process for its maintenance crews and other agencies, the Minnesota Department of Transportation and Minnesota Local Road Research Board published a compilation of several technical documents and interviews with industry experts into an easy-to-use resource.
FHWA Recognizes Innovations From No Boundaries Members May 16, 2023 - Several No Boundaries member states are featured in the May/June 2023 issue of Innovator, the bimonthly newsletter of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). Colorado, Missouri and Indiana DOTs are featured for their use of crowdsourced data to improve transportation system operations. In Colorado and Indiana, vehicle probe data can be used to automatically post and update travel times on dynamic message signs to give travelers real-time traffic and safety information. Missouri DOT uses reports from a free public app to identify potholes quickly and efficiently.
Webinar to Discuss New Federal Pavement Marking Rule May 9, 2023 - Highway maintenance practices can vary significantly by location, affecting the retroreflectivity of lane lines and other pavement markings in different ways. A new Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) rule aims to standardize the quality of these markings across the country. To discuss details and methods for complying with the new rule, TRB will host a webinar on May 24 from 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. Eastern.
No Boundaries April 2023 Peer Exchange Highlights May 2, 2023 - No Boundaries members gathered in Missouri on April 25 and 26 for the first peer exchange of the year. Hosted by the Missouri DOT, a visit to the agency’s annual Innovations Showcase allowed No Boundaries members to see demonstrations of innovative tools, materials and processes, and learn best practices for implementing similar programs in their home states.