Industry News

Don’t Forget to Plan for Fun at AM56

ACPA is encouraging our Annual Meeting attendees to take advantage of the opportunity to play golf and to participate in some outstanding excursions.  ACPA is encouraging single golfers and groups to participate in the golf outing.  The golf outing is being held at the English Turn Golf Club.  ACPA will provide transportation to and from the event, so bring your sticks (or rent clubs onsite) and get ready “fore” a fun outing!  

Our special excursions offer an opportunity for fun and adventure, as well as some beautiful views with our airboat  tour through the nearby bayous and swamps. Don’t forget your camera for some great photo opportunities.

Our “Spirits and Cocktails Walking Tour” offers some eerie and other-worldly experiences and some great local cocktails along the way. Bring your friends and colleagues for an evening of fun, some unforgettable selfies and some exceptional craft cocktails. 

In related news, ACPA has extended its room block incrementally with the goal of presenting one more opportunity for members and guests to complete hotel and event registrations as soon as possible for our 56th Annual Meeting. To take advantage of the discounted rate of $189/night, please register as soon as possible by following our reservation link or visiting the event website

For event registration, ACPA members are eligible to receive a 20% discount off any registration ticket type, including those for your spouse and guests for whom you are paying. To receive the discount, please enter the following promotional code at the top of the ticket selection screen before you proceed to checkout: member20.  Our one-stop registration/information website is  Scheduled for December 1 through 5, ACPA’s 56th Annual Meeting will be held at the New Orleans Marriott.  This year’s theme, “Concrete and all that jazz!” highlights the spirit and culture of New Orleans, and of course, the focus on concrete pavements!   

FHWA Workshops Explore Specs, Research and Technology

Two workshops this week gave the FHWA, state transportation officials, industry and academia an opportunity to discuss timely issues and address strategic questions regarding performance-related specifications (PRS), as well as pavement and paving materials research and technology (R&T).

Leif Wathne of ACPA and Gordon Smith of the CP Tech Center were on hand to represent concrete pavement interests at the FHWA PRS stakeholder workshop on October 15. Key questions presented to state transportation agencies centered on the biggest issue that performance testing can address; agencies’ experience with performance testing, types of performance tests required, and types of performance testing agencies have tried or are using presently. Brian Fouch, Director of the FHWA’s Office of Preconstruction, Construction, and Pavements opened the meeting and set the stage for both open and facilitated discussions. The workshop also included four plenary sessions aimed that focused on opportunities and barriers associated with both concrete and asphalt performance engineered pavements and PRS.

ACPA Chairman Jim Mack, CEMEX; ACPA 2nd Vice-Chairman David Howard, Koss Construction; Leif Wathne, and Gordon Smith were among the participants at the second workshop, which began today and runs through Thursday, October 17. The purpose of this workshop is to gather program-level stakeholder input for issues to be addressed through the FHWA’s Pavement and Materials Program, all with an eye on current and future R&T programs.

The workshop presented opportunities for state transportation officials and industry representatives to present their top three pavement & materials issues; key areas/products that should be promoted nationally; and areas of support requested from the FHWA. Other discussion topics included pavement design and analysis, pavement management (PM2 rules); pavement design policy outreach; performance-engineered mix design (PEMD) and PRS; the FHWA Mobile Technology Center program; FHWA’s Materials laboratory research, pavement research, safety, pavement preservation and quality assurance. Both workshops were held at the Turner–Fairbank Highway Research Center in McLean, VA.

Photo: FHWA Associate Administrator for Infrastructure Hari Kalla makes opening remarks at the FHWA’s Research and Technology Workshop.

ACPA Spotlights Latest Design Technology

ACPA was front and center at this year’s Southeastern States Pavement Conference with Eric Ferrebee presenting, “Modern Methods for Concrete Pavement Design.” Focusing on the use of and AASHTOWare’s Pavement ME design program, he also reiterated the importance of migrating away from the AASHTO 93 pavement design system. 

Hosted by the Southeastern States Pavement Association, the three-day conference began with transportation asset management plan and pavement & bridge performance (TAMP/PM2) discussions and business meetings, and panel discussions.  Technical tracks covering pavement management and pavement design presentations followed on the second day, and Eric participated in a program that included presentations by Prashat Ram of APTech*, and Cameron Murray of the University of Arkansas.

The annual event brings together pavement engineers from the southeastern region of the country to discuss pavement management, TAMP/PM2 rules, and pavement design-related issues.  Led by state highway officials, the organization counts as its voting members the state transportation agencies of Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia.

* ACPA Member



Enter ENR’s Year in Construction Contest

ACPA is encouraging members and affiliates to enter concrete paving and CPR photos in Engineering News Record’s Year In Construction photo contest.  ENR is asking readers—individuals and firms, amateurs and professionals— to submit their best construction photos taken anywhere in the world between Nov. 17, 2018 and Nov. 8, 2019. The editors say they want dynamic, well-composed and aesthetically pleasing photos, but are urging readers not submit photos showing unsafe conditions or behavior.

A panel of judges from ENR, with guests, will select the best of the best for publication in ENR’s Jan. 13, 2020 edition. The winning photos also will be published in the 2019 ENR Photo Contest Winners Gallery online. The deadline is Nov. 8, 2019.

Please follow this link for contest rules, previous winners galleries, and other useful information.



AASHTO Elects 2020 Officers

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) has named its top officers for the 2019-2020 term. AASHTO has elected Patrick McKenna, Director of the Missouri DOT, as President and New Hampshire DOT Commissioner Victoria Sheehan as Vice President.  Commissioner Sheehan becomes the second woman in AASHTO’s 105-year history to serve in that role.

McKenna says he plans to focus on surface transportation funding reauthorization and transportation safety.

“We need to make clear the public benefit of federal surface transportation investment and its impact on the safety, mobility, health, and economic well-being of all Americans,” he explained in his emphasis areas paper released at the meeting.

Launching a national campaign focused on how “transportation is personal” that explains the many benefits transportation investment provides to all Americans is one tactic McKenna plans to spearhead during his term as AASHTO’s 2019-2020 president as part of the organization’s effort to get surface transportation funding legislation reauthorized. He also plans to place renewed focus on reducing transportation fatalities, which McKenna described as a “national public health crisis” in his remarks.

To help reduce the estimated 36,700 highway fatalities, McKenna said AASHTO will continue its role in the Towards Zero Deaths and Vision Zero national coalitions while facilitating discussions with state DOTs and local communities to consider ways to deploy “innovative infrastructure designs and technologies” to more safely accommodate pedestrians, bicyclists and scooter users.

McKenna was appointed as Missouri DOT’s director in 2015.  He previously served as MAASTO President and is a member of the TRB executive committee. He earned an undergraduate degree in finance from Bentley College and an MS in management and finance from the University of Maryland. 

Sheehan was appointed New Hampshire DOT Commissioner in 2015. She previously served with the Massachusetts DOT’s highway division, where she served in a number of roles, including her most recent post as Manager of Strategic Planning and Highway performance.  Originally from Northern Ireland, Sheehan holds a Master’s in Structural Engineering and Architecture from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.

Photo:  AASHTO 2019/20 President Patrick McKenna and Vice President Victoria Sheehan. (Credit: AASHTO)

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