April 11, 2014


Thoughts on Future Directions for Pavement in Modern Transportation Systems


1:40 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.


1605 Tilia, Room 1103, West Village


A number of financial, technological and environmental trends are beginning to affect the practice of maintaining existing pavement networks in developed countries, and the deployment of networks in developing countries (what are the 2 billion cars going to ride on?).  There is limited awareness of some of these trends within different parts of the pavement industry (materials suppliers, construction contractors, designers, policy makers, maintenance engineers, pavement managers at different levels of government, researchers, legislators), and attempts to respond, most of which do not have a system-level perspective, and many of which are based on incomplete information, which in some cases can result in a high risk of unintended  negative consequences.  This presentation is a first attempt by the author to bring these trends together into system-level view, identify major uncertainties and potential opportunities for improving system-wide performance (and summarize performance measures), and make recommendations for implementation of what we already know and what we need to know, but don’t.  The ideas come from recent and current research, work on a soon-to-be-published FHWA reference document on improving the sustainability of pavements, and observation of some recent and upcoming “turning point” events.  Some of the topics will include oil extraction by hydraulic fracturing, pavement roughness and texture, pavement management, quality control, underground utilities, bicycles, human thermal comfort, oil refining, fly ash from coal combustion, interaction between marketing and environmental regulation, and electric powered vehicles.  The purpose of the presentation is to stimulate discussion.

Biographical Sketch

John Harvey is Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Chair of the Transportation Technology and Policy graduate studies program, and Director of the UC Pavement Research Center (UCPRC) at the University of California, Davis and Berkeley.  He is Principal Investigator for the Caltrans sponsored Partnered Pavement Research Center for research, development and implementation for a wide range of pavement technology, management, cost and environmental topics.  He is the PI of the team working with Caltrans to develop and implement a new pavement management system (PMS), mechanistic-empirical pavement design procedures, and co-PI for a Federal Highway Administration project developing guidelines for pavement sustainability.  Prof. Harvey teaches classes in pavement engineering and construction management.  He has worked on other projects for the Federal Highway Administration, the Federal Government of Nigeria, the Strategic Highway Research Program, several states, industry and a number of local agencies.  His BSCE is from Oregon State University and his graduate degrees are from UC Berkeley.  He is a registered civil engineer in California.

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