The 2018 ACEC/Iowa Engineering Excellence Awards winning projects in the Special Projects Category:

Special Projects Grand Place Award (1st Place in Category) AND 2018 Engineering Excellence Grand Conceptor Award Winner

Firm: HDR Engineering, Inc.
Client/Owner: Iowa DOT
Project: Interstate 80 Automated Corridors Planning Study
Contact: Mr. Will Sharp, PE
E-mail: [email protected] ~ Phone: 402-399-1074



AMES, IOWA – Iowa Department of Transportation (Iowa DOT) initiated the Interstate 80 Automated Corridors Planning Study — a study that hasn’t been done before in the state and is one of the first planning studies in the country to fully consider the impact of Automated Vehicles at the corridor level — to prepare a development plan for the Interstate 80 corridor that best addresses safety and mobility needs of all freight and passenger travelers.

In Iowa, I-80 serves as a critical, national east-west freight transportation link, covering a distance of roughly 300 miles between Nebraska and Illinois. It sees as many as 33,500 vehicles per day with that number expected to increase to 51,900 by 2040. With this expected increase, the DOT understands the importance of expanding the interstate. To study this subject, unique analysis methods were developed that provided locally specific estimates of the impact of AV technology mixed with manually operated vehicles on Interstate 80.

The guiding principles for the study include balancing mobility and access, designing for future needs, and right-sizing the corridor. These principles were the key reasons for the Interstate 80 Automated Corridors Planning Study. Iowa envisions the future where advanced technologies make travelers safer and the transportation system more efficient and reliable. AVs are the primary technology poised to deliver these safety and mobility benefits.
Key findings from the study included reducing the number of crashes related to human factors and weather by up to 80 percent, reducing aggressive driving, and improving mobility to disabled and senior citizens. Iowa DOT has led the way in this front and the recommendations that came out of this study will not only impact Iowa, but other states willing to think ahead and prepare for the future.

The Automated Corridors Planning Study will allow near-term improvements to be planned, designed, and as funding is available, constructed in accordance with the long-term plan. Iowa DOT’s on-going efforts with automated vehicle technology, and a connected transportation system will help keep Iowa moving into the future safely, efficiently, and conveniently.

Special Projects Honor Award (2nd place in category)

Project: Driftless Area Education Conservation Board
Firm: Fehr Graham
Client/Owner: Allamakee County Conservation Board


Special Projects Engineering Achievement Award

Project: Cedar Valley Nature Trail, Phase 4
Firm: Anderson Bogert
Client/Owner: Linn County Conservation

Project: 5th Street Reconstruction
Firm: HR Green, Inc.
Client/Owner: City of Coralville

Project: Centennial Park SRF Sponsored Water Quality Project
Firm: Shive- Hattery
Client/Owner: City of North Liberty

Project: F.Y. 2014 Stormwater Lift Stations, Waterloo, Iowa
Firm: Snyder & Associates
Client/Owner: City of Waterloo

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