Analysis of Roadway Safety under the Alternative Project Delivery Systems

PI: Ahmed Abdel Aziz (UW),
Dates: 12/16/2015 – 12/15/2016
Status: Completed
Project Information
Final Technical Report

In the United States, most highway projects were developed using the traditional design‐bidbuild delivery system. Following to regular conditions assessment, maintenance of a road is performed based on the availability of funds and the priorities established for road maintenance. With the scarcity of maintenance funds, serviceability of roads is impacted, which affects road safety.

The new alternative project delivery systems such as design‐build‐operatemaintain, design‐build‐finance‐operate‐maintain, and other public‐private partnership (PPP) models provide for more consideration into the life cycle of highways. Particularly, under performance‐based long‐term contracts, which are the norm for PPP systems, road maintenance and performance become controlling parameters in compensating contractors for their work. With serviceable well‐maintained roads, it is expected that road safety records would improve. Through content analysis of PPP procurement documents and agreements as well as surveys, this research will investigate PPP projects for their contractual safety terms such as the design of safety payments, measurements, and safety specifications. Through statistical analysis, the research will survey target PPP states for the roadway safety records and compare them to the safety records of the localities of the respective states. Data analysis should reveal how safety was contractually managed on the PPP projects and what was the safety performance of such projects. The outcome will help local, and state transportation agencies make decisions regarding whether one delivery system would be better than others when it comes to roadway safety, and how best to manage safety through contractual terms.