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Active Projects II

SPR 769

Safe and Effective Speed Reductions for Freeway Work Zones Phase 2 

 
Project Coordinator:
Jon Lazarus
Research Agency:
Oregon State University
Principal Investigator:
John Gambatese
Start Date for ODOT:
June 1, 2013
Completion Date for ODOT:
February 28, 2015
 
OVERVIEW:
In response to requests from the Associated General Contractors (AGC) Oregon-Columbia
Chapter, ODOT began a research study in FY2013 (SPR-751) to look for ways to safely reduce
speeds through work zones on preservation projects taking place on high-speed freeways.
Freeway preservation projects typically require traffic lane reductions to allow workers to
rehabilitate worn pavements. During lane closures, work activities take place immediately
adjacent to live traffic – traffic that is often travelling at high speeds. ODOT is interested in
strategies to safely reduce these speeds and subsequently improve the overall safety of the work
zone for drivers and for workers.
Phase 1 of this study (SPR 751) included two paving projects, one on I-84 near The Dalles and
one on I-5 just north of the McKenzie River Bridge. On each project, different traffic control
measures (TCMs) were implemented and speed data was collected both prior to and within the
work zone.
 
OBJECTIVE:
The proposed research comprises augmenting the SPR-751 study to address the issues and needs
identified by the TAC. This proposal includes conducting two additional case study projects at a
reduced cost. The additional case studies will be on paving projects similar to SPR-751, and
include a reduced total number of treatments focused on the following specific traffic control
measures: “SPEED 50” signs, PCMS signs on a roller(s) or a stationary trailer(s), and radar
speed reader trailers. As with SPR-751, the overall goal of the proposed research is to assist
ODOT with enhancing the safety of work zones on high-speed roadways.
 
Safe and Effective Speed Reductions for Freeway Work Zones Phase 2 Work Plan

QUARTERLY REPORTS
FY 14
FY 15
 
 
 
 qtr. 3
 
 
 
 
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SPR 770

Impact of Cascadia Earthquake on Seismic Evaluation

 

Project Coordinator:
Steve Soltesz
Research Agency:
Portland State University
Principal Investigator:
Peter Dusicka
Start Date for ODOT:
December 16, 2013
Completion Date for ODOT:
March 31, 2016
 
OVERVIEW:
The seismic risk used for bridge design and retrofit is defined by hazard maps of ground
acceleration values. To generate the maps, an algorithm called a Probabilistic Seismic Hazard
Analysis (PSHA) is used to combine multiple regional sources of ground shaking. Each source
has a different intensity, probability of occurrence, and distance to a specific location. For
Oregon, one key source of ground shaking in the PSHA is from the Cascadia Subduction Zone
(CSZ); however, a CSZ earthquake can have significantly different ground motion as a
standalone event than what is captured in the values derived from the PSHA.
 
OBJECTIVE:
The objective of this project is to provide ODOT with the best rational estimate of ground
acceleration values for designing and retrofitting bridges.
 
Impact of Cascadia Earthquake on Seismic Evaluation Criteria of Bridges Work Plan
 

QUARTERLY REPORTS
 
FY 14
FY 15
 
 
 
 
 ​qtr. 3
 
 ​qtr. 4
 
 
 
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SPR 771

Risk Factors Associated with High Potential for Serious Crashes

 

Project Coordinator:
Mark Joerger
Research Agency:
Montana State University
Principal Investigator:
Ahmed Al-Kaisy/David Veneziano
Start Date for ODOT:
November 21, 2013
Completion Date for ODOT:
May 26, 2015
 
OVERVIEW:
Crashes are random events and consequently, can occur at any location along the roadway. On
roadways with higher traffic volumes, the more frequent occurrence of crashes allows for the
direct identification of high crash locations using historical data. However, on local roads, crash
occurrence, particularly fatal and serious injury crashes, is less frequent. This makes it difficult
to identify trends and treat hazardous sites based on historical data. Geometric, traffic and other
features may lend themselves toward crashes potentially happening in spot locations. Therefore,
an approach to identifying these types of risk factors on low volume roads is necessary.
 
OBJECTIVE:
The proposed research will identify risk factors and features that contribute to crashes along low
volume roads and the cost effectiveness of countermeasures to address them. Research objectives
include:
Identify risk factors and features that contribute to crash occurrence and which can be corrected
by selected low cost countermeasures, with a specific focus on low and moderate volume roads
with sporadic crash occurrence.
Develop a risk index of different factors and features that practitioners should look for and that
can be addressed using selected low cost countermeasures along low and moderate volume
roads.
Establish the cost effectiveness/thresholds for the low cost countermeasures that are selected for
use in addressing risk factors on low to moderate volume roads.
Conduct limited case studies to demonstrate the use of the identified risk factors and application
of the cost effectiveness thresholds that are developed.
 
Risk Factors Associated with High Potential for Serious Crashes Work Plan

QUARTERLY REPORTS
 
 
 
FY 14
FY 15
 
 
 
 
 qtr. 3
 
 
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SPR 772

Investigation of Bicycle and Pedestrian Count Technologies

 

Project Coordinator:
Lyn Cornell
Research Agency:
 
Principal Investigator:
 
Start Date for ODOT:
 
Completion Date for ODOT:
 
 

OVERVIEW:

The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) maintains a statewide license to traffic signal controller software (Northwest Signal Voyage) which has a red clearance (all-red) extension feature to dynamically extend the red clearance if a vehicle is detected that has or will likely run the red signal indication. This smart, adaptive red clearance treatment provides additional safety protection when risks of a RLR event is high, but is passive in other cases, thus having almost no impact on intersection capacity & delay. The cost is very low to implement this smart intelligent transportation system (ITS) treatment and over 500 intersections currently have controllers with this software feature available to them (and that number is growing). While widely available in Oregon, little is known about the impacts of this feature on intersection safety or best practice for detector placement and settings to maximize the safety/crash reduction benefits of the red clearance extension feature. Preliminary research suggests that detector placement is critical to achieving optimal benefits. This research would develop quantitative information about the safety effects of red clearance extensions from simulated data and available empirical data. The there is a clear opportunity to leverage the controller and software investments to larger safety gains and provide ODOT the opportunity to provide leadership on an issue of national importance. The value of this research is potentially high. 

OBJECTIVE:

 The overall goal of the proposed research is to quantify the safety performance of alternative red clearance extension detection and controller settings to mitigate RLR crashes at intersections in Oregon. More specifically, the objective is to determine where detection zones should be placed so as to maximize RLR crash avoidance potential (detection further away from the stop bar), while minimizing the likelihood of false red light extensions (extension is triggered for a stopping vehicle), and to establish optimal timing parameters for various objectives. 

Investigation of Bicycle and Pedestrian Count Technologies Work Plan

 

QUARTERLY REPORT

 

FY 15
FY 16
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

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SPR 773

Optimal Timing and Detection Practices for Red Clearance Extensions
 
Project Coordinator:
Mark Joerger
Research Agency:
Oregon State University
Principal Investigator:
David Hurwitz
Start Date for ODOT:
July 1, 2014
Completion Date for ODOT:
March 1, 2016
 
OVERVIEW:
The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) maintains a statewide license to traffic signal controller software (Northwest Signal Voyage) which has a red clearance (all-red) extension feature to dynamically extend the red clearance if a vehicle is detected that has or will likely run the red signal indication. This smart, adaptive red clearance treatment provides additional safety protection when risks of a RLR event is high, but is passive in other cases, thus having almost no impact on intersection capacity & delay. The cost is very low to implement this smart intelligent transportation system (ITS) treatment and over 500 intersections currently have controllers with this software feature available to them (and that number is growing). While widely available in Oregon, little is known about the impacts of this feature on intersection safety or best practice for detector placement and settings to maximize the safety/crash reduction benefits of the red clearance extension feature. Preliminary research suggests that detector placement is critical to achieving optimal benefits. This research would develop quantitative information about the safety effects of red clearance extensions from simulated data and available empirical data. The there is a clear opportunity to leverage the controller and software investments to larger safety gains and provide ODOT the opportunity to provide leadership on an issue of national importance. The value of this research is potentially high.
 
OBJECTIVE:
The overall goal of the proposed research is to quantify the safety performance of alternative red clearance extension detection and controller settings to mitigate RLR crashes at intersections in Oregon. More specifically, the objective is to determine where detection zones should be placed so as to maximize RLR crash avoidance potential (detection further away from the stop bar), while minimizing the likelihood of false red light extensions (extension is triggered for a stopping vehicle), and to establish optimal timing parameters for various objectives.  
 
 
QUARTERLY REPORT
FY 15
FY 16
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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SPR 774

Road User Charge Economic Analysis
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SPR 775

 
Project Coordinator:
Brooke Jordan
Research Agency:
Oregon State University
Principal Investigator:
B. Starr McMullen/Haizhong Wang
Start Date for ODOT:
 
Completion Date for ODOT:
 
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SPR 776

OVERVIEW:
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SPR 777

The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) relies on the fuels tax to fund road infrastructure maintenance, operations, and improvements. The fuels tax has been a reliable source of transportation revenue for decades, but increasing vehicle fuel efficiency and other factors are expected to result in permanent funding shortfalls, however, fuel tax revenues are a significant share of state highway fund revenues.  Therefore, Oregon’s highway system would be in jeopardy as the gasoline tax revenues necessary to maintain, preserve and modernize the system slowly but steadily drained away. In 2007, ODOT completed its first pilot project, which resulted in valuable lessons that were applied to the second pilot project, completed in early 2013. The purpose of this study is to assess the economic impacts of various alternative road user charge structures and implementation proposals on stakeholders in the state of Oregon. 
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SPR 778

 
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SPR 779

OBJECTIVE:
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SPR 780

The objective of this research is to provide ODOT with up to date information on the economic impact of various RUC alternatives on the stakeholders in the state of Oregon.  This information can then be used to make informed decisions on which VMT fee structure to adopt in the transition between the current finance structure and a sustainable finance structure for the future.  Previous work in the area was limited by the small Oregon sample of households included in the NHTS data set.  The newly available OHAS opens the opportunity to explore the impacts on Oregon households and geographic regions with much greater precision.  Further, the OHAS data set provides a much larger sample of alternative fuel, hybrid, and fuel-efficient vehicles than included in past data sets. 
This proposed research project will analyze the economic impact of various road user charge rate structures and implementation strategies. Possibilities that could be explored include: (1) A simple flat rate structure that applies to all vehicles. (2) A transition VMT fee structure that could, at first, retain the gasoline tax for existing vehicles but impose a VMT fee structure on new vehicles starting in a specified year (the VMT fee could be either a flat fee or a vehicle efficiency based fee) 3) An alternative transition VMT fee imposed only on existing fleet vehicles with mpg>50, or >40 or >30.  These fees structures could be supplemented at the state or local level with vehicle or facility specific rates.  Hybrid or transition systems such as 2) or 3) would probably involve higher calculation, storage, and other associated implementation costs.
In all cases the impact on identified socio-economic groups and regions will be assessed as well as the impact on financial stability of the system.
 
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SPR 781

Road User Charge Economic Analysis Work Plan
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SPR 782

 
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