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Thursday, August 4, 2016

Pennsylvania Selected to Host State Transportation Innovation Council Roundtable Discussion

Pennsylvania’s State Transportation Innovation Council Touted as National Model

Harrisburg, PA – Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) Secretary Leslie S. Richards today joined US Department of Transportation Deputy Secretary Victor Mendez, Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Administrator Gregory Nadeau and FHWA Division Administrator Renee Sigel to showcase the Pennsylvania State Transportation Innovation Council (STIC). Pennsylvania was chosen to host because of the success of the Pennsylvania STIC.

“We are proud to be playing a leading role nationally in championing better ways to deliver transportation services,” Richards said. “We welcome today’s opportunity to meet with our federal counterparts to review our progress.”

In 2010, FHWA introduced the State Transportation Innovation Council concept to state transportation departments and industry partners to foster ownership and pride in establishing a process in which ideas, innovative techniques and processes can be evaluated and implemented quickly and proficiently.

In their recently published Innovation Culture Index, the FHWA recognized the Pennsylvania STIC as having achieved a sustained culture of innovation, meaning that the Pennsylvania STIC’s activities, processes or framework to fully support innovative measures have become standard practice.

The Pennsylvania STIC brings together representatives from PennDOT, FHWA and the contracting industry for regular idea exchanges and fosters work within PennDOT to develop innovative approaches.

Among the innovations STIC has helped foster in Pennsylvania:

• Adaptive Signal Control Technology – PennDOT has installed these innovative traffic signals at 190 intersections across the state and plans installation at 246 more intersections. Instead of signals controlled by arbitrary timing, these devices rely on traffic sensors to adjust timing to enhance traffic flow.

• High Friction Surface Treatments -- An innovative asphalt mix that enhances traction and has been installed at more than 200 high crash locations across the state.

• Warm Mix asphalt -- A technique that allows asphalt to be applied at lower temperatures, which reduces emissions and extends the paving season.

• Accelerated Bridge Construction methods -- Using innovative construction methods, such as geosynthetic reinforced, soil-integrated bridge systems and prefabricated elements, PennDOT has been able to reduce the time for building new or replacing bridges. Keeping traffic disruptions and detours to a minimum helps improve mobility while bridges are being replaced.

Held at the Dixon University Center in Harrisburg, the discussion focused on the various advantages to maintaining a culture of innovation, from safety to savings, and the maximization of taxpayer’s dollars.

For more information on Pennsylvania’s Transportation Innovation Council visit www.penndot.gov at PennDOT 20/20.

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