The 101st Annual Transportation and Highway Engineering (T.H.E) Conference convened at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Illini Union February 23–25, 2015. This year’s conference attracted more than 1,000 transportation professionals from the public and private sectors, who met to present key accomplishments, share knowledge and best practices, and network with colleagues and friends.
The conference featured a diverse array of technical presentations, agency and industry updates, interactive exhibits, and multiple pre-conference activities, including workshops on pavement markings, pavement type selection, project delivery methods, and low-temperature asphalt performance test specification.
The general sessions covered best practices on temporary concrete barriers and updates from the Ohio River bridges project and the O’Hare modernization project, as well as updates from the Illinois Center for Transportation (ICT) and a glimpse into the future of transportation technologies through the eyes of a young faculty member.
There were also break-out sessions for engineers that focused on bridges and structures, traffic operations and safety, local roads and streets, and design and construction.
At T.H.E., engineers from each Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) district were honored for their excellence in service. Additionally, IDOT and ICT recognized Bill Kramer, IDOT Unit Chief of the Foundation and Geotechnical Group, and Kelly Morse, Analytical Chemistry Laboratory Supervisor at IDOT, as IDOT Technical Review Panel (TRP) Chairs of the Year. As a member of IDOT’s Structures, Hydraulics, and Geotechnical Technical Advisory Group, Kramer has been active in research since 2007, chairing seven studies and serving as a TRP member for eight additional studies. Morse has been active in research since 2009, chairing four studies and serving as TRP member for two additional studies, was also the TRP chair for the IDOT/ICT High Impact Research Award. Kramer and Morse have received praise for providing leadership in innovation, improving current practices, and demonstrating a sincere commitment to research and implementation.
Project R27-077: Evaluating Pavement Markings was recognized with this year’s IDOT/ICT High Impact Research Award. The objective of this project was to develop a pavement marking selection guide based on performance results on both Portland cement concrete and hot-mix asphalt pavements over a period of four years, in an effort to maximize marking performance by optimizing pavement marking selection. Carmine Dwyer, Senior Engineer, and William Vavrik, Vice President and Principal Engineer at Applied Research Associates, Inc. served as the project’s principal investigator and co-principal investigator, respectively. The study was overseen by a TRP chaired by Kelly Morse; TRP members were Kyle Armstrong, John Benda, Mike Fassero, Tim Kell, Steve Lynch, Marshall Metcalf, Matt Mueller, Brian Pfeifer, Kurt Schuldt, and Aaron Weatherholt.
The 102nd T.H.E. conference will take place February 23–24, 2016 with pre-conference activities offered on February 22. For more information about this event, please visit the conference website.