The National Academies

NCHRP Synthesis 20-05/Topic 05-01 [Final (Synthesis)]

Reconditioning High-Volume Freeways in Urban Areas
[ NCHRP 20-05 (Synthesis of Information Related to Highway Practices) ]

  Project Data

Current practices in freeway rehabilitation are recorded that have been successfully used to overcome some of the problems that are associated with such projects. Planning and programming processes are described step-by-step, important design considerations are noted, and construction management practices inclusive of traffic control are described. Many unfilled needs for improving the urban freeway rehabilitation process are identified. Rehabilitation program planning is usually preceded by an inspection using sufficiency rating systems or other quantifiable values for project selection. Project objectives are defined in terms of the types of repairs and/or improvements to be made and the intended service life. Both program planning and definition of objectives recognize the constraints of environmental considerations in all urban highway projects. Air and noise pollution, waste disposal, and energy and resource utilization are considered and evaluated in the project planning phase. If the impact of the project on urban traffic plans is to be controlled, the rehabilitation project must include a comprehensive public information program. The project design for an urban area must accommodate overhead structure clearances, retention of drainage features, limitations of work area, curing time restrictions, deadload restrictions on structures, and a cost-versus-service life elevation. Typical pavement rehabilitation projects have included leveling courses of bituminous concrete, varying in thickness from 2 to 5 in. Successful strip-surfacing in each wheelpath (where rutting has occured) is described as well as slip-form paving of thin bonded concrete resurfacing. Alternative traffic controls for rehabilitation work sites are reviewed and the importance of construction management is emphasized. Design characteristics for new or rebuilt freeways are considered that are intended to provide maintainability. Conclusions and recommendations based on the study are presented. 

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