The National Academies

NCHRP 25-29 [Completed]

Developing Design and Management Guidelines for Historic Road Corridors

  Project Data
Funds: $100,000
Research Agency: Otak, Inc.
Principal Investigator: Kay Van Sickel
Effective Date: 4/7/2006
Completion Date: 11/16/2007


A few state transportation agencies (e.g., Connecticut and Oregon) have developed project-specific guidelines for application on given historic road corridors, while others (e.g., New Jersey and Vermont) are developing broader, statewide guidelines for any historic road corridors. Engineers responsible for managing, maintaining, and improving historic roads need useful national guidelines. These guidelines should balance transportation performance with preserving the historic character-defining features and could streamline the Section 106 and Section 4(f) review processes.

In recent years, transportation professionals have sought greater flexibility in application of roadway standards through consideration and implementation of context-sensitive solutions. Although the needs of historic road corridors may be considered a subset of context-sensitive solutions, these corridors present unique challenges to roadway designers and managers. There is a need to apply greater flexibility in design practices and decisions that can be tailored to specific conditions found in historic road corridors. To overcome these challenges, a consistent definition of "historic road corridors" is needed within which flexibility can be applied in their design and management without sacrificing the safety or performance of the roadway.


The objective of this project was to develop guidelines for managing and improving historic road corridors. Because each historic road corridor presents unique challenges, these guidelines should allow sufficient flexibility to integrate safety, roadway performance, and historic preservation. The project should also produce recommendations for AASHTO adoption of a policy for design and management of historic road corridors.
Status: The project was terminated at the end of Phase I.

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