Multi Institution Projects Year 1 (2012-2013)

Developing a Performance Measurement Approach to Benefit/Cost Freight Project Prioritization

PI: Kenneth Casavant (WSU)
Co-Investigators: Starr McMullen (OSU), Anne Goodchild (UW), Edward McCormack (UW), Eric Jessup (WSU)
Dates: 06/01/2012 – 10/31/2014
Final Project Report: PacTrans-4-WSU-Casavant

Current project prioritization methodologies used by DOTs often do not specifically include freight benefits of projects and they have not taken advantage of new data made available by GPS technology (instead they depend on modeled data). This project will investigate the use of performance data for the emerging freight project prioritization methodology, primarily through the investigation of minimum performance standards and ongoing performance evaluation to develop a prioritization methodology that recognizes the impact of investments on overall freight system performance. The Washington State Department of Transportation has a well-developed benefit/cost methodology for long-standing programs supporting the Legislature’s policy goals for safety, preservation, environmental issues, and mobility. This project will finalize and test important methodological elements to improve freight project prioritization. It will also exploit new data sources for performance measurement, therefore addressing key weaknesses of the current approaches.

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New Strategies for Maintaining Post-Seismic Operations of Lifeline Corridors

PI: David Trejo (OSU)
Co-Investigators: Marc Eberhard (lead at UW), Dawn Lehman (UW), Charles Roeder (UW), John Stanton (UW), Leroy Hulsey (UAF), Chris Bell (OSU)
Dates: 06/01/2012 – 10/31/2014
Final Project Report: PacTrans-1-OSU-Trejo

The Pacific Northwest (PNW) faces unique combinations of environmental hazards, including the strong potential for seismic events from the Cascadia Subduction Zone (CSZ). The last known significant earthquake on the CSZ is believed to be in 1700. Evidence indicates that major earthquakes on the CSZ likely occur at a return period of approximately 300 years, and the next subduction event is anticipated to cause widespread damage throughout the PNW (The Cascadia Region Earthquake Workgroup 2005). In addition to being susceptible to earthquake damage, many infrastructure systems in the region are exposed to coastal zones or de-icing and/or anti-icing chemicals. Exposure to these conditions result in premature deterioration (corrosion, alkali silica reactions (ASR), cracking, etc.) and often results in reduced structure capacity. Keeping critical corridors operational during and after a seismic event on the CSZ is essential to minimizing loss of life and minimizing economic impact after the quake in the State. Critical to keeping these corridors open is the continued operation of the bridges on these corridors.

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Performance Monitoring for Safe and Livable Communities: Fusing Data, to Improve Arterial Operations for All Users

PI: Michael Dixon (UI)
Co-Investigators: Ahmed Abdel-Rahim (UI), Mike Lowry (UI), D. Kim (OSU), J.D. Porter (OSU); Yinhai Wang (UW)
Dates: 05/01/2012 – 9/30/2014
Final Project Report: PacTrans-5-UI-Abdel-Rahim

Safe travel and livable communities require data that can characterize all modes, not just motorized vehicles. The problem many transportation professionals face is measuring performance and correcting poor performance to meet community goals. This project will integrate data from multiple sources for a more complete understanding of how to improve arterial traffic safety and how arterial systems serve each mode and steps that professionals should take to improve service.

PacTrans-UI-Abdel-Rahim-Ahmed-Project Update-2012-M-0005

A Platform for Proactive Risk-Based Slope Asset Management

PI: Andrew T. Metzger (UAF)
Co-Investigators: Pedro Arduino (UW), Michael Olsen (OSU), Armin Stuedlein (OSU), Joseph Wartman (UW)
Dates: 05/16/2012 – 10/13/2014
Final Project Report: PacTrans-2-UAF-Metzger

Unstable slopes, including landslides, rock falls, and debris flows, present significant risk to safety and regional commerce and represent a chronic concern for highway mangers. Due to the widespread spatial and temporal distribution of these problems, most states have, or are taking, measures to manage slopes along their highway alignments. However, given the physical nature of slopes along highway corridors, they pose a number of challenges when deciding where to allocate funds as well as from an overall asset management perspective. This is compounded by the level of effort currently required to survey, inspect and characterize slopes for the purpose of condition assessment. Slope assessment has traditionally been laborious and costly, but altogether necessary due to the potential consequences of a failure. Current best-practices for management do not necessarily facilitate proactive slope management — identifying and remediating hazardous conditions before a failure occurs.

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An Innovative Survey Design to Understand Sustainable Travel Behaviors

PI: Cynthia Chen (UW)
Co-Investigators: Anne Vernez Moudon (UW), Qing Shen (UW), Hejun Kang (UI)
Dates: 06/16/2012 – 10/6/2014
Final Project Report: PacTrans-3-UW-Chen

An innovative survey is being undertaken with rolling samples to address a major fiscal challenge faced by many MPOs. Faced with a small, but continuous budget, MPOs are increasingly unable to continue the current survey practice: conducting a large survey every 10 years. A rolling sample design also has other benefits over the current practice. Yet, for its implementation in household travel surveys, many questions exist. Some are technical issues, while others are cost and procedural-related. The primary purpose of this project is to understand these issues and provide recommendations for a future household travel survey with rolling samples.

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