The National Academies

NCHRP Synthesis 20-05/Topic 50-02 [Active (Synthesis)]

Highway Hydraulic Engineering State of Practice
[ NCHRP 20-05 (Synthesis of Information Related to Highway Practices) ]

  Project Data
Funds: $45,000
Authorization to Begin Work: 5/1/2018 -- estimated
Staff Responsibility: Jo Allen Gause
Research Agency: Michigan Technologica University
Principal Investigator: Melanie Kueber Watkins
Effective Date: 9/18/2018
Fiscal Year: 2018

Final Scope

In 2012, the Federal Highway Administration published Highway Hydraulics State of Practice, a snapshot of highway hydraulic engineering policies and practices in state departments of transportation (DOTs). This document provided a comprehensive review of highway hydraulic engineering policies and practices, which vary widely from state to state. Since that time, DOTs have implemented a variety of changes to their policies and practices in response to emerging technology, regulatory requirements, environmental concerns, alternative project delivery methods, and other factors.

The objective of this synthesis is to document significant changes that state DOTs have made to their hydraulic engineering policies and practices over the past decade. The study will highlight the trends and factors driving these changes. This synthesis is not intended as an update of the 2012 FHWA Highway Hydraulics State of Practice report.

Information gathered will focus on changes in hydraulic engineering policy and practice related to the following areas (but is not limited to these):
• Roadway drainage (e.g., spread criteria, permanent versus temporary drainage)
• Culverts (e.g., aquatic organism and wildlife passage)
• Bridges (e.g., scour computations)
• Advanced hydraulic modeling (e.g., 2D, unsteady flow, sediment transport)
• Response to regulatory requirements (e.g., LID, programmatic agreements)
• Floodplain impact and mitigation
• Coastal hydraulics (e.g., sea level change)
• Alternative project delivery methods

Information will be gathered through literature review, survey of state DOTs, collection of relevant DOT hydraulic engineering policies, and interviews with selected agencies for case examples. The survey should be directed to state hydraulic engineers. Knowledge gaps, barriers to implementation, and suggestions for future research will be identified.

Information Sources (partial): FHWA Highway Hydraulics State of Practice, January 2012 https://www.tsp2.org/2012/03/02/highway-hydraulics-state-of-practices-report-january-2012-2/ University of Texas at San Antonio, Technical Report 0-6671-1, August 2012, Synthesis of Hydrologic and Hydraulic Impacts: Technical Report

TRB Staff
Jo Allen Gause
Phone: 202-334-3826
Email: jagause@nas.edu

Meeting Dates
First Panel:  September 18, 2018, Washington, DC
Teleconference with Consultant: October 9, 2018, 11:00 am - 12:00 pm ET
Second Panel: June 20, 2018, Washington, DC

Topic Panel
Victoria Bains, Virginia DOT
Guohong "Jennifer" Duan, University of Arizona
Andrea C. H. Hendrickson, Minnesota DOT
Casey M. Kramer, Northwest Hydraulic Consultants
Saul Nuccitelli, Texas DOT
Nicholas J. Wark, Vermont Agency of Transportation
Cynthia Nurmi, Federal Highway Administration
Nancy M. Whiting, Transportation Research Board



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