This training is open to WSDOT Employees and Local Agency Personnel
This one-day class focuses on the policy, process, and standards for developing a Transportation Management Plan (TMP) and design of Traffic Control Plans (TCPs for roadway construction projects. Lectures cover topics such as TMP requirements, assessing work zone impacts, developing traffic control strategies, traffic control standards, devices, and types of traffic control plans to include in the Plans, Specifications, and Estimates (PS&Es).
The target audiences for this class are Transportation Technicians and Transportation Engineers who are responsible for developing traffic control PS&Es. This class is also beneficial to engineering personnel responsible for construction and implementation of traffic control work zones.
Prerequisites for this class: Basic knowledge of roadway design and construction.
WSDOT Employees should use the The Learning Center to register for the class.
All others please contact us for scheduling.
Flagger and Traffic Control Supervisor (TCS) Training
For WSDOT staff, please check the Learning Center or contact your Region Safety Office.
For all others, please see our general Workzone Safety page for flagging and TCS training information.
Nine key items for designers:
TMPs are Transportation Management Plans. TMPs are a set of strategies for managing the work zone impacts of a project. A TMP is required for all projects and is a key element in addressing all work zone safety and mobility impacts. TMP development begins in the scoping phase of a project by gathering project information, traffic data, impact assessments, strategies, and mitigation and design solutions.
In the Final Project Definition Form, Box 6 - Work Zone Strategy - only the following needs to be included, as at this level most TMP information will be conceptual rather than finalized:
Indicate whether the project is considered significant or potentially significant.
Indicate known or potential major impacts.
List known elements that the TMP will address, including types of Traffic Control Plans (TCPs), Transportation Operations Plan issues, and Public Information Plans.
To determine if a project is significant, use the following:
Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) requirements define a significant project as: A project that, alone or in combination with other concurrent projects nearby, is anticipated to cause sustained work zone impacts that are greater than what is considered tolerable based on an assessment of work zone safety and mobility impacts and the level of mitigation possible.
Interstate projects within the boundaries of a Transportation Management Area that occupy a location for more than three days with either intermittent or continuous lane closures are considered significant. It is possible to request an exception from FHWA for Interstate projects if sufficient justification is present to demonstrate that a project will not have sustained work zone impacts.
Significant projects are further defined as: Any project with an anticipated work zone-related impact that cannot be mitigated to an acceptable level. An acceptable level will be defined by the region based on its knowledge of the project's local and regional area and the extent and adverse effect an impact may have on the area.
Designers are not expected to know how the contractor will build the project. There are many ways to stage a construction project, bearing in mind traffic safety and construction efficiencies. During project design, there is a requirement to provide a constructible, maintainable, safe, and mobile project concept that is translated into an effective TMP - even thought the contractor may propose a different TMP.
Safe and mobile are terms that are definable within the context of the project. There is no one answer to fit every case, and no project is completely safe or fully mobile. Complete consideration of all factors involved will lead to conclusions that include known effective safety and mobility features.
There is not increased exposure to legal liability when providing a TMP at such a detailed level. A well developed TMP that is based on known accepted policy and accurate information is actually the best defense against legal action. Poor implementation of the TMP is more likely to be the cause for concern.
A comprehensive TMP does not necessarily add more cost to the project, though cost is a legitimate concern and cost-effectiveness and containment are intended to be part of the selected strategy analysis and TMP. The bottom line is that it is less costly to include work zone costs as part of the project than it is to add them later by change order. Also, providing for safety and mobility can add costs, but these costs are usually more than offset by the benefits provided. The costs need to be identified early on in the scoping phase to provide an adequate project estimate.
Traffic Control Plans (TCPs) from previous projects should not be used without careful consideration of all project information. Usually, each project has some unique features or different traffic conditions, even though there may be similar work. It is strongly recommended to conduct the impact assessment process first, then determine what plans may be appropriate. You may also be able to consult with the construction office that implemented a previous TCP to determine if it was effective.
For assistance and answers, work within the structure and protocol of your office and region - there are several resources in the form of expert advice and information available. Additionally, inquire at the region and HQ Design, Construction, and Traffic offices. Generally, work zone design is not a "cookbook" approach, but is instead careful application of concepts and procedures, and the designer needs to be prepare to actively pursue all available information and resources.
Work Zone Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS)
Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) technologies are used to anticipate and reduce congestion caused by highway work zones. The use of ITS technology in work zones such as portable camera systems, highway advisory radios, variable speed limits, ramp metering, traveler information, merge guidance, and queue detection information is aimed at increasing safety for both workers and road users.
ITS technologies for work zones is an emerging area; these technologies provide the means to better monitor and manage traffic flow through and around work zones. Minimizing the impact of work zone delays through technology has a positive impact on safety, mobility, access and productivity.
Work zone ITS elements should be identified early in the strategy development process and included in the preliminary estimate so they can be designed along with the other traffic control elements. For large mobility projects that have existing freeway cameras already in place, temporary ITS features (temporary poles, portable systems, etc.) may be necessary to ensure that the network can be maintained during the construction, especially if existing camera locations are in conflict with staging areas.
In locations that do not have existing camera locations but have significant construction projects planned, portable ITS systems may be a good opportunity to bring ITS architecture to the route.