maintenance

Smartphone app promises crowdsourced road roughness index and fuel efficient routing

By Michael Brenneis The ability of smartphones to collect reams of data is significantly expanding crowdsourcing opportunities. An accelerometer is used by smartphones to change screen orientation or count footfalls, among other uses. But it is also capable of recording the force of

Better timing for seasonal load restrictions with connected sensors

By Bill Holloway Researchers at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, have developed a new way to monitor the underground sensors that help states determine when seasonal load restrictions (SLRs) should begin and end. States impose SLRs during times when roads are particularly vulnerable to

New Jersey DOT: no more roadway expansions

By Dan Handel Richard Hammer, New Jersey’s newly appointed Department of Transportation Commissioner, announced the agency will pursue a ‘fix-it-first’ mindset toward transportation spending. “The days of system expansion in New Jersey are long over, we don’t have the funds,”

Frankenbike assessing the state of Seattle’s bike trails

By Bill Holloway While vans equipped with specialized measurement devices are used extensively by transportation agencies to assess roadway pavement conditions, the condition of bike trails has not generally received the same level of attention. However, Alta Planning + Design is now using a

Transportation impacts of energy boom not limited to road maintenance

By Bill Holloway The booming oil and natural gas industry is bringing jobs and economic development to states across the U.S. But along with the money and jobs come lots and lots of trucks. Particularly in rural areas with historically low traffic volumes, the huge numbers of trucks—often more

PennDOT begins posting bridge weight limits in light of failure of transportation funding

By Robbie Webber In late June, as the Pennsylvania legislature debated whether or not to raise the wholesale gas tax, PennDOT Secretary Barry Schoch warned that he would likely have to place weight restrictions on bridges across the state in order to extend their useful life if additional funding

Colorado fires will result in highway repairs and closures for years

By Robbie Webber The 2012 Waldo Canyon and High Park wildfires—two of the most destructive fires in Colorado history—are costing CDOT millions of dollars as fire-scarred hillsides slide down onto major highways and floods cause washouts. Although the problems began last year, dramatic footage

Legislative inaction prompts possible bridge weight limits, cancels signature megaproject

By Eric Sundquist While several states successfully passed transportation revenue packages this year, in two states the failure of such bills will have immediate effects on infrastructure. In Pennsylvania, the Legislature’s inability to agree on a transportation revenue package has triggered a

Trucking’s shift towards LNG picking up steam

By Bill Holloway With high diesel prices consuming profits and growing concern surrounding the impacts of diesel emissions, more trucking companies are experimenting with liquefied natural gas as a fuel. LNG has come to the party relatively late. Compressed natural gas powers most natural gas

Public supports system preservation, why not politicians?

By Eric Sundquist More evidence that the public strongly supports system preservation comes from a survey performed for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation. When asked to rank the importance of a variety of potential priorities for WisDOT, preservation came out on top by a wide margin with