In this week’s continuing coverage of Chapter events, we’re pleased to highlight the Wisconsin Concrete Pavement Association’s (WCPA’s) annual concrete pavement conference, which was held in February.  The workshop was attended by 304 people and included a full day of presentations, as well as the Chapter’s annual pavement awards program. Here are some additional details:

The theme of the conference this year was “Moving Forward with Concrete” and WCPA President Kevin McMullen says the goal was to get the state of the art before the audience of more than 300 participants. 

Just a few examples from the very robust program included presentations on performance engineered mixtures (by Peter Taylor, CP Tech Center); “Concrete is COOL and They are Our Future, Too!” (by Dr. Tyler Ley of Oklahoma State University); a presentation on important things to know about steel in concrete pavements (by Dr. Mark Snyder of Pavement Engineering & Research Consultants); research results on joint sawing practices and their effects on pavement durability (by Dr. Jim Crovetti, Marquette University), and a presentation on how to comply with OSHA’s silica rules (by Chad Stuart of Cobb Strecker Dunphy & Zimmermann). These were just a few of the presentations, which also included presentations by Jackie Spoor of the WCPA; she presented on the importance of quality control. 

The Wisconsin DOT (WisDOT), the concrete pavement industry, and academia were all well represented at the conference.  Following Kevin’s opening remarks, the Hon. Craig Thompson, who was appointed as WisDOT Transportation Secretary in January, presented newly-elected Governor Tony Evers’ vision of transportation. Kevin says paving experts from the WisDOT Central Office also participated.  The group included Barry Paye, Chief Materials & Pavement Engineer; Jim Parry, Quality Assurance Engineer; Chad Hayes, Concrete Engineer; Russ Frank, Aggregate & Laboratory Engineer; and Peter Kemp, Pavement Engineering Supervisor.  Jerry Voigt from ACPA presented on ACPA’s VISION2040 initiative and provided an overview of current and planned programs and plans.  Eric Ferrebee provided ‘back to basics’ instruction on joint layout & design and also co-presented with Kevin on the challenges and solutions to municipal concrete pavement design, which included example problems that worked through PavementDesigner.org.

Although the full list of presentations is too long to present in this story, we encourage you to take a look at the complete list of 20 presentations made during the main program and breakout sessions (with concurrent construction and design/research tracks).  The presentations are all posted on WCPA’s website. Click here to view the presentations and program.

Kevin reports that over the past 24 years, he’s seen a considerable increase in the conference participation among consulting engineers. He added that although local government agencies have curbed some local travel, he has organized the program to accommodate those who can only participate for a limited amount of time.  He also emphasized the quality of the presentations has helped increase participation. 

Other highlights of the program included a tailgate dinner, scholarship recognition, and an exhibitor showcase, followed by a hospitality & networking event. 

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Photocaption:  WisDOT Secretary Craig Thompson presenting the Governor’s Vision of Transportation.

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