$2M awarded to NCTSPM researchers to fund 20 new projects

NCTSPM recently awarded over $2M to researchers at FIU, Georgia Tech, UAB, and UCF to fund twenty new research projects. These projects were selected based on their potential to improve the productivity and management of the U.S. Transportation System within the limits of likely resource constraints such as funding, time, transportation workforce capacity, space for infrastructure, and available social and political capital. 

Recognizing the significance of these resource constraints, NCTSPM research is focused on making significant contributions to answering three core questions related to transportation planning and management:  

  • How do we get most out of existing transportation systems? 
  • How should we build for the future? 
  • How should we balance our available resources between the questions above? 

More specifically, the new research projects are oriented toward four research themes: 

Goods Movement:
Efficient goods movement is essential to the economic competiveness of the U.S., and NCTSPM researchers will be undertaking a variety of new projects aimed at quantifying the economic benefits and other impacts of improvements in freight transportation.  These studies will focus on both heavily-trafficked freight corridors as well as smaller urban and rural areas and will include studies of both direct and indirect (e.g. the economic value of travel-time reliability for freight transportation) impacts of goods movements. 

Data-driven Operations and Management Decision Making
Planning and Operations of transportation systems is often limited by the availability or timeliness of data necessary to support effective decision making. As a consequence, transportation systems either may not fully meet operational objectives or may not achieve these objectives in the most cost effective manner. NCTSPM researchers will be undertaking a range of new projects aimed at providing decision makers with improved tools for more effectively managing transportation systems. From development of tools to aid the implementation of the Highway Safety Manual; to analyzing the impacts of High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) to High Occupancy Toll (HOT) conversion; to balancing available resources to maximize return on investment, the NCTSPM projects are focused on providing data driven solutions to the decision making challenges of today

Next Generation Transportation Infrastructure
In addition to considering what can be done today, NCTSPM researchers have an eye toward future transportation systems. New research projects in 2013 will consider various aspects of the next generation transportation infrastructure from inception to future operations and maintenance. Projects will consider ways in which future infrastructure and operations can be improved through enhanced risk assessment, advanced design procedures, innovative materials and construction methods, and new technologies.  

Human Factors and Social Networks in Transportation
Finally, several new projects are focusing on human interactions with the transportation system. With projects exploring the impacts of real-time information, the amount of information transmitted, and the method of communication for various transportation settings (e.g. driver information, real-time transit information, etc.) NCTSPM projects are making strides in understanding the changing behavior and impact of the individual in the ever changing transportation information environment. 


The full list of 2013 NCTSPM projects is provided below: 

Managing Transportation System Health: Setting Performance Targets and Policies in Non-Uniform Regions and Jurisdictions to Achieve Uniform Statewide and National Objectives
Principal Investigator: Adjo Amekudzi Kennedy, Georgia Tech

Evaluation of Signage Alternatives for Express Lane Facilities
Principal Investigator: Albert Gan, Florida International University

Innovative Modular High Performance Lightweight Decks for Accelerated Bridge Construction (FIU, UCF, UAB)
Principal Investigator: Amir Mirmiran, Florida International University

Evaluation of the Cost Effectiveness of Illumination as a Safety Treatment at Rural Intersections (GT, MGSC)
Principal Investigator: Angshuman Guin, Georgia Tech

HOV to HOT Conversion Impacts on Carpooling 
Principal Investigator: Yanzhi Xu, Georgia Tech

Freight Impacts on Small Urban and Rural Areas
Principal Investigator: Catherine Ross, Georgia Tech

Bridge Rail Design Procedures
Principal Investigator: Dean Sicking, University of Alabama at Birmingham

Estimating the Monetary Benefits of Reducing Delays on Heavily Trafficked Truck Freight Corridors in Georgia
Principal Investigator: Frank Southworth, Georgia Tech

Evaluation of Anchor Bolt Clearance Discrepancies 
Principal Investigator: Ian Hosch, University of Alabama at Birmingham

Next Generation Crack Sealing Planning Tool for Pavement Preservation (GT, UCF)
Principal Investigator: James Tsai, Georgia Tech

Evaluating the Impact of Real-Time Transit Passenger Information on Ridership and Mode Share
Principal Investigator: Kari Watkins, Georgia Tech

Assessment of High Early Strength Limestone Blended Cement for Next Generation Transportation Structures
Principal Investigator: Kimberly Kurtis, Georgia Tech

Extending HYRISK to Predict Scour Risk as a Function of Soil Erodibility Characteristics
Principal Investigator: Laurie Garrow, Georgia Tech

Cooperative Vehicle-Highway Automation Technology: Simulation of Benefits and Operational Issues
Principal Investigator: Michael Rodgers, Georgia Tech

A Comprehensive Investigation of Visibility Problems on Highways: Developing Real Time Monitoring and Prediction Systems for Reduced Visibility and Understanding Traffic and Human Factors Implications (UCF, GT)
Principal Investigator: Mohamed Abdel-Aty, University of Central Florida

Development of a Web-based Decision Making Tool for the Highway Safety Manual Implementation
Principal Investigator: Priyanka Alluri, Florida International University

Consumer Response to Road Pricing: Macro and Micro Modeling Tools for Socioeconomic Evaluation and Pricing of Managed Lanes
Principal Investigator: Randall Guensler, Georgia Tech

A Data Driven Approach to State Transportation Investment Decisions: A Transportation Project Investment and Evaluation Resource
Principal Investigator:  Timothy F. Welch, Georgia Tech

Examining the Value of Travel Time Reliability for Freight Transportation to Support Freight Planning and Decision-Making
Principal Investigator:  Xia Jin, Florida International University

Field Validation of a Drive-By Bridge Inspection System with Wireless BWIM + NDE Devices (GT, UAB)
Principal Investigator:  Yang Wang, Georgia Tech 

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