The National Academies

NCHRP 10-50A [Completed]

Guidelines for Selecting Strategies for Rehabilitating Rigid Pavements Subjected to High-Traffic Volumes

  Project Data
Funds: $225,000
Research Agency: Texas A&M Research Foundation
Principal Investigator: Stuart D. Anderson
Effective Date: 3/1/1999
Completion Date: 2/28/2002

Background: With increasing traffic on roadways, motorists are becoming less tolerant of delays during pavement maintenance, rehabilitation, and reconstruction. To minimize delays, state highway agencies use strategies involving various traffic management and construction practices that allow work to be completed at night or during periods of low traffic. This is particularly true with rigid pavements. Recent research has emphasized the engineering aspects of maintenance, rehabilitation, and reconstruction of rigid pavements, but less attention has been paid to cost-effectiveness, public acceptance, and accident risk. Without sufficient information, the effectiveness of alternative strategies can not be adequately assessed and the selection of the optimum strategy cannot be made.

Research is needed to evaluate the effectiveness of strategies for maintenance, rehabilitation, and reconstruction of rigid pavements subjected to high-traffic volumes and to develop guidelines for the selection of suitable strategies for different situations. These guidelines will help highway agencies select strategies that will ensure long-term performance, reduce user delay, reduce accident risk, and improve public acceptance.

Objective: The objective of this research is to develop guidelines that can be used by highway agencies to select appropriate strategies for maintenance, rehabilitation, and reconstruction of rigid pavements subjected to high-traffic volumes. For the purpose of this research, high-traffic volumes refer to volumes that can cause unacceptable user delays as defined by the highway agency. The research will make use of the information developed under NCHRP Project 10-50.

Tasks: Accomplishment of this objective will require at least the following tasks.

Phase I: (1) In addition to reviewing the report on NCHRP Project 10-50, collect and review domestic and foreign literature to identify strategies for maintenance, rehabilitation, and reconstruction of rigid pavements subjected to high-traffic volumes. These strategies must emphasize traffic management issues and consider other relevant factors. The information shall be obtained from published and unpublished reports, recent case studies, contacts with public and private sector agencies and industry organizations, and other sources. Compile a summary of the strategies currently in use or under consideration for different situations. Also, clearly identify those strategies that can be used to effectively maintain, rehabilitate, or reconstruct rigid pavements subjected to different levels of high-traffic volume, pavement condition, and other factors. (2) Refine the Phase II plan, developed as part of the proposal, to further evaluate the promising strategies identified in Task 1 and to develop guidelines for maintenance, rehabilitation, and reconstruction of rigid pavements. The research plan must identify details of the work proposed in Tasks 4 and 5. (3) Prepare and submit an interim report that documents the research performed in Tasks 1 and 2 and includes an updated work plan for Phase II of the project. Following review of the interim report by the NCHRP, the research team will be required to make a presentation to the project panel. Work on Phase II of the project will not begin until the interim report is approved and the work plan is authorized by the NCHRP.

Phase II: (4) Execute the plan approved in Task 3. Evaluate feasible strategies, define a decision-making process, and develop draft guidelines for maintenance, rehabilitation, and reconstruction of rigid pavements that take into account levels of service, traffic management considerations, life-cycle costs, climatic conditions, promising materials and construction methods, and other relevant factors. (5) Demonstrate applicability of the draft guidelines developed in Task 4, and revise the guidelines as necessary. (6) Submit a final report that documents the entire research effort.

Status: The research has been completed and a final report has been received and distributed to NCHRP sponsors (i.e., state departments of transportation). The research identified a step-by-step process for evaluating feasible rehabilitation strategies for rigid pavements. The process considers both pavement- and non-pavement related aspects of rehabilitation strategies, including pavement condition, traffic management issues, and life-cycle costs. The process should help state highway agency decision-makers identify the most appropriate maintenance, rehabilitation, and reconstruction strategy for specific project conditions.

Product Availability: The agency final report is available as NCHRP Web Document 45. A summary of the final report has been published as NCHRP Research Results Digest 272.

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