Sample Proposals

Sample 1: Review and Update of Human Factors and Operations Issues in the AASHTO Green Book
Sample 2: Development of Testing Protocols for Surface Applied Concrete Sealers
Sample 3: Guidelines for Selection of Bridge Deck Overlays, Sealers and Treatments
Sample 4: Bridge Construction Practices Using Incremental Launching
Sample 5: Update of AASHTO Roadside Design Guide
Sample 6: Development of a Guide to Update ADA Transition Plans


Sample 1

NCHRP 20-7
Proposed Research Needs Statement

AASHTO Technical Committee on Geometric Design
Mr. Robert L. Walters, P.E., Chair
May 2006

TITLE
Review and Update of Human Factors and Operations Issues in the AASHTO Green Book

BACKGROUND / NEEDS STATEMENT
Sections of the AASHTO Green Book that deal with operations and human factors issues are in need of update to ensure that current information in these topic areas is useful to the designer.  For example, the information provided on ramp metering in the current edition of the Green Book is 10 to 15 years old.  While these two issues are only mentioned peripherally within the Green Book, they need to be kept current to ensure that the design engineers are making their decisions based on current information.  With technology changing so quickly in these areas, and since the basic information provided has not changed since the 1990 Green Book, a thorough review and update is past due.

OBJECTIVE
The objective of this research is to update information contained in the AASHTO Green Book (A Policy on Geometric Design of Highways and Streets) related to 1) human factors issues and 2) operations issues, for incorporation into the next edition of the Guide.

WORK TASKS
Tasks anticipated in this project include the following:

  • Review and highlight sections of the AASHTO Green Book that contain information related to operations and human factors issues.
  • Coordinate with the TRB Freeway Operations Committee and other appropriate groups to identify appropriate sections of the Green Book, as well as to obtain up-to-date information in these two subject areas.
  • Review appropriate material from the Freeway Management and Operations Handbook and the Ramp Management and Control Handbook for inclusion in the AASHTO Green Book.
  • Review proposed information with the Technical Committee on Geometric Design to assure that the information is appropriate for the Green Book.
  • Develop proposed text for inclusion in the next edition of the AASHTO Green Book.

FUNDING REQUESTED
$ 50,000

SUBMITTED BY
Mr. Robert L. Walters, P.E.
Chair, AASHTO Technical Committee on Geometric Design
Chief Engineer
Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department
P.O. Box 2261
Little Rock, AR 72203
Phone: (xxx) xxx-xxxx
Fax: (xxx) xxx-xxxx
E-mail: xxx.xxxx.xxx

Back to Top


Sample 2

NCHRP 20-7
Proposed Research Needs Statement

Subcommittee on Materials
Mr. Carlos Braceras, P.E., Chair
August 11, 2005

TITLE
Development of Testing Protocols for Surface Applied Concrete Sealers

BACKGROUND
Many highway agencies use concrete sealers to protect both new and existing concrete from the ingress of moisture and chlorides, which can cause scaling and also more serious damage through mechanisms such as corrosion of embedded reinforcing steel and alkali-silica reactivity. Properly applied and managed, sealers can be an important part of the strategy for maintaining concrete structures in harsh environments.

NCHRP Synthesis 209, Sealers for Portland Cement Concrete Highway Facilities, indicated there were 169 different companies producing over 400 sealer products when the report was written in 1994. The synthesis also reported that highway agencies had numerous and varied product qualification testing procedures and criteria, resulting in a lack of any uniform protocol regarding sealer testing, approval, and use. There are significant differences in capability among the generic types of sealers, but there are also significant differences in performance resulting from misapplication of sealers. The report recommended that national test protocols be developed for product qualification, product quality assurance, field application quality assurance, and field-testing for performance and reapplication needs.

In 2004, Technical Section 4C of the AASHTO Subcommittee on Materials formed a Task Force to review NCHRP Synthesis 209 and make a recommendation on incorporating the findings of the synthesis in AASHTO M 224, Use of Protective Sealers for Portland Cement Concrete. Since the synthesis reported that many highway agencies were using sealers to some extent to protect features such as bridge decks, parapets, abutments, piers, and median barriers, the task force recommended that M224 be updated to address the testing recommendations in the synthesis.

OBJECTIVE
This project would review and update M 224 to include the testing recommendations contained in NCHRP Synthesis 209. The additions would include:

  • Sealer product qualification (including required application rate)
  • Sealer product quality assurance
  • Sealer application quality assurance (including achieved application rate)
  • Field-testing sealer performance and re-application needs.

URGENCY
The vast array of sealers and product qualification testing procedures, together with competing performance claims, have resulted in uncertainties regarding the choice of the appropriate sealer, the efficiency of sealers, and their expected service life.

The development of national testing protocols would help bring order to the situation by defining the effectiveness of the various classes of sealers, providing standards to measure the quality of the product, and developing criteria to measure the field performance. If sealer selection is well understood, properly applied sealers can be an important cost-effective strategy in protecting concrete from deterioration.

REQUESTED FUNDING
$75,000 is being requested from NCHRP 20-7.

TIME FRAME
The project will take approximately 12 months.

SUBMITTED BY
Alan Rawson, Administrator
Bureau of Materials & Research
New Hampshire Department of Transportation
11 Stickney Avenue
P.O. Box 483
Concord, NH 03302-0483
Phone: (xxx) xxx-xxxx

David Hall
Division Bridge Engineer
Federal Highway Administration
19 Chenell Dr.
Concord, NH 03301-8539
Phone: (xxx) xxx-xxxx

Back to Top


Sample 3

NCHRP 20-7
Proposed Research Needs Statement

AASHTO Subcommittee on Maintenance, Bridge Task Force
Peter Weykamp, NYSDOT, Chair
July 2006

PROBLEM TITLE
Guidelines for Selection of Bridge Deck Overlays, Sealers and Treatments

RESEARCH PROBLEM STATEMENT
Currently, transportation agencies don’t share information related to the use of specific materials and treatments for bridge overlays and sealing. Typically, specific actions should be matched to the condition of the existing deck and deck material (concrete, steel, timber or composite). Some states have developed such guidelines, but only for a narrow range of materials/treatments they have chosen to employ. The proposed research would seek to identify agencies with such guidelines and assemble them into a compendium of deck conditions/overlay-sealers and treatment methods to enable transportation agencies to select from a wide range of actions for addressing various deck conditions and deck materials.

LITERATURE SEARCH SUMMARY
An initial literature search revealed that some transportation agencies have guidelines for using specific overlay and sealer treatments. However, no compendium has been assembled.

RESEARCH OBJECTIVE
The objective of this research effort would be to survey transportation agencies to identify existing guidelines/practices-special notes/qualified product lists for deck overlays, sealers and treatments. The guidelines would include current deck condition and deck materials, appropriate actions to prepare a deck for overlayment or sealing, estimates of relative costs/durability of various deck overlays, sealers and treatments for additional selection guidance and qualified products lists/specifications for proprietary/generic deck overlay and sealer materials.  The researchers should explore creative suggestions that will allow the product to be accessible to a broad audience.

ESTIMATE OF PROBLEM FUNDING AND RESEARCH PERIOD
Recommended Funding: $100,000
Research Period: 12 months

URGENCY, PAYOFF POTENTIAL, AND IMPLEMENTATION
Transportation agencies must extend the service lives of existing bridge decks as funds for replacement or major rehabilitation are limited. This is a significant problem with an extremely high priority. Development of the overlay/sealer/treatment guidelines will provide agencies with a wide range of options for addressing specific existing deck conditions in an optimal manner. Implementation would occur through publication of an AASHTO Guide for Bridge Deck Preservation.

CONTACT PERSON
Peter Weykamp, NYSDOT
AASHTO Subcommittee on Maintenance, Bridge Task Force Chair
50 Wolf Road
Albany, NY  12232
Phone: (xxx) xxx-xxxx
Fax: (xxx) xxx-xxxx
E-mail: xxx.xxxx.xxx

Back to Top


Sample 4

NCHRP 20-7
Proposed Research Needs Statement

AASHTO Subcommittee on Bridges and Structures
Chair, Malcolm T. Kerley, VA
May 2006

TITLE
Bridge Construction Practices Using Incremental Launching

SCOPE OF WORK
Bridge owners across the United States are faced with two very critical, and often conflicting, problems: constructing bridges more quickly than ever before and constructing these same bridges without unnecessarily impacting the surrounding environment.  The incremental launching method can help alleviate the problems. 

The incremental launching method offers a number of significant benefits to bridge owners and contractors, including:

  • safer and faster construction
  • minimal disturbance to congested or environmentally-sensitive areas
  • smaller but more concentrated area required for erection

Nearly 1000 bridges have been constructed using the incremental launching method, most of which are located in Europe.  Yet the method has seen very limited application in the United States. 

OBJECTIVE
The proposed study is expected to review and discuss the state-of-the-practice of incremental launching of bridges around the world, and the critical issues for consideration in design and construction of bridges using incremental launching. 

PAYOFF POTENTIAL
The findings and recommendations of this study are expected to promote the cost-effective use of incremental launching of bridges in the United States to improve safety, accelerate construction, mitigate congestion, preserve and/or enhance the environment. 

ESTIMATED SCHEDULE AND COST
8 months at $40,000

CONTACT PERSONS
Ken Hurst, KSDOT
Chair, T- 4 Construction
700 SW Harrison
Topeka, KS 66603
Phone: (xxx) xxx-xxxx
E-mail: xxx.xxxx.xxx

M. Myint Lwin
FHWA Office of Bridge Technology
400 7th. Street, SW, Room 3203
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: (xxx) xxx-xxxx
E-mail: xxx.xxxx.xxx

Back to Top


Sample 5

NCHRP 20-7
Proposed Research Needs Statement

AASHTO Technical Committee on Roadside Safety
Mr. Keith Cota, P.E., Chair
October 2006

TITLE
Update of AASHTO Roadside Design Guide

BACKGROUND AND PROBLEM STATEMENT
The last time that the AASHTO Roadside Design Guide went through a complete update was in 2002.  Since that time, Chapter 6 was updated and released as a “replacement chapter” due to the perceived need to update median barrier warrants based on several high-profile crossover crashes (and NTSB’s request to make changes based on these crashes).  The Technical Committee on Roadside Safety is now embarking on a full update of the Roadside Design Guide, slated for publication in late 2007 or early 2008.

There is a significant amount of research related to roadside safety that has been recently completed or is in the final stages of completion.  While chapter authors from the committee are responsible for reviewing this research and incorporating appropriate information into the update, there is a need for a single, technically knowledgeable person to assist in this process, as well as to review the guide as a whole to help determine if and where inconsistencies between old and new research have cropped up, to ensure that recommendations do not conflict with each other from chapter to chapter, and to assist in determining appropriate material for the updated guide.

Current roadside safety research includes the following:

  • NCHRP 22-17 – Recommend Guidelines for Curbs and Curb-Barrier Combination  (Chapters 3, 5, 6, & 10)
  • FHWA Memo (October 2004) – Guidelines for the Selection of W-Beam Barrier Terminal (Chapter 8)
  • FHWA Memo – High Tension Cable on Slopes (Chapters 5 & 6)
  • FHWA Memo – Design Considerations for Large Trucks (Chapters 3, 5, 6, 7 & 10)
  • NCHRP 22-18 – Crashworthy Work Zone Traffic Control Devices (Chapter 9)
  • NCHRP 22-19 – Aesthetic Concrete Barrier and Bridge Rail (Chapters 5, 6, 7, & 10)
  • Midwest Pool Fund States – Development of Guardrail Treatments at Intersecting Roadways (Chapter 5)
  • NCHRP 20-7 (Task 168) – Determination of Appropriate Railing Heights for Bicyclist (Chapters 5, 6, & 7)
  • NCHRP 20-7 (Task 196) – Development of Guide to Crashworthy Bridge Rail Systems (Chapter 7)

OBJECTIVE
The objective of this research is to update the information contained in the AASHTO Roadside Design Guide based on research that has been conducted over the past 4-6 years.

WORK TASKS
Tasks anticipated in this project include the following:

  • Review recommendations from roadside safety research (in coordination with committee members) for possible inclusion in the updated guide
  • Review draft sections of the updated AASHTO Roadside Design Guide for consistency and to ensure that the information is appropriate for the Roadside Design Guide.
  • Develop any needed proposed text for inclusion in the next edition of the AASHTO Roadside Design Guide.

FUNDING REQUESTED
$ 60,000

SUBMITTED BY
Mr. Keith Cota, P.E.
Chair, AASHTO Technical Committee on Roadside Safety
New Hampshire Department of Transportation
P.O. Box 483
Concord, NH 03302

Phone: (xxx) xxx-xxxx
Fax: (xxx) xxx-xxxx
E-mail: xxx.xxxx.xxx

Back to Top


Sample 6

NCHRP 20-7
Proposed Research Needs Statement

Subcommittee on Design
Allen Biehler, Chair
May 2006
 

Title
Development of a Guide to Update ADA Transition Plans

Research Needs Statement
As a part of the implementation requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), States were required to do a self assessment in the early 1990s and develop a transition plan to address any deficiencies in their bringing their programs, services and activities into compliance, particularly structural deficiencies.  The deficiencies were supposed to be addressed by 1995 and plans updated periodically.   A quick survey of AASHTO members suggests that there is no consistency but considerable confusion among the States on when and how the Transition Plans are to be updated.  This issue is particularly critical and timely as the US Access Board is moving ahead with its revised ADA Accessibility Guidelines (ADAAG) regarding public rights of way.

State agencies appear to be having difficulty translating the applicable laws and guidance into field-level implementation in a manner that reflects prudent fiscal management.  This research effort is aimed at producing a guide that is specifically directed to state highway agencies to ensure that States fully understand the requirements, in terms of scope and field level issues, and comply with them in a logical fashion that is compatible with engineering and planning organizations acting in a civil rights arena.

Literature Search Summary
A search of the TRIS and Research in Progress databases for studies related to ADA public rights-of-way compliance and transition plans yielded no results.

Research Objective
The project objective is to provide additional guidance applicable to state highway agencies in complying with the administrative requirements of the ADA.  These requirements include the development of a Transition Plan, as well as the prerequisite self-assessment, a complaint/grievance procedures, etc.

There have been several county and city level transition plans as well as a few statewide plans, but all have been the result of court orders.  The objective here is to ensure full compliance on a voluntary level by producing a tool that may be a useful guide in the planning and programming of changes necessary to meet the law and ensure compliance with evolving guidance.

Estimate of Problem Funding and Research Period
Recommended Funding: $100,000
Research Period: 12 months

Urgency, Payoff Potential, and Implementation
While some states appear to have done the necessary field work, i.e., curb cuts, slopes, etc., to achieve compliance, relatively few have done the comprehensive assessment and planning required under the law.  Different FHWA divisions are now requiring the updating of the Transition Plans, which some states have not updated since the early 1990s.  A number of states have recently been taken to court and required to implement broad structural changes on ADA compliance elements.  In addition to court ordered resolution, non-compliance ultimately could result in a withholding of federal funding. 

Implementation by the states would protect the states from such sanctions and allow compliance done in a way that is consistent with their specific programming schedules and ways of doing business.  Court orders may result in a State being required to undertake very broad, onerous, or additional structural improvements than would otherwise be required if the state were allowed to program improvements themselves.

This guide would supply a straightforward framework and perhaps template for achieving compliance and meeting the needs for program accessibility.

Contact Person
Linda I. Singer, ADA Title II Coordinator
Maryland State Highway Administration
Office of Policy and Research
707 North Calvert Street
Baltimore MD 21202
Phone: (xxx) xxx-xxxx
Fax: (xxx) xxx-xxxx
E-mail: xxx.xxxx.xxx

Back to Top

Have questions? Email network.manager@transportation.org with any comments or troubles you may have.

© American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. All rights reserved.
444 N Capitol St. NW — Suite 249 — Washington, DC 20001
About AASHTO | Legal Information | Privacy Policy | Copyright Notice