A Traffic Data Plan for Mechanistic-Empirical Pavement Designs (2002 Pavement Design Guide)

Report No: 04-R3

Published in 2003

About the report:

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) is preparing to implement the mechanistic-empirical pavement design methodology being developed under the National Cooperative Research Program's Project 1-37A, commonly referred to as the 2002 Pavement Design Guide (2002 Guide). The developers of the 2002 Guide have stated that transportation agencies in compliance with the Federal Highway Administration's Traffic Monitoring Guide will have the traffic data necessary to implement the new pavement design approach. The 2002 Guide is structured in a hierarchical manner with three pavement design levels. For Level 1 designs, all project-specific data will be collected, including axle load spectra information (and axle loadings by vehicle classification) and vehicle classification counts at the project location. For Level 2 designs, regional and project-specific data will be applied. For Level 3 designs, estimated project-specific and statewide average or default data will be used in the analysis. The purpose of this effort was to develop a plan to position VDOT to collect traffic and truck axle weight data to support Level 2 pavement designs. This report serves as the basis for implementing and maintaining the truck weigh program necessary for the new pavement design approach and provides data for the current pavement design process used in Virginia (i.e., the 1993 pavement design methodology of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials). To keep program costs at a minimum, the proposed traffic data program for pavement design takes advantage of the flexibility permitted in the Traffic Monitoring Guide and the availability of weigh-in-motion data from the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles. Truck weight Groups 1 and 2, which consist of interstate and arterial roads, where the majority of truck loading occurs, are the first priority for implementation. A traffic data plan and a phased approach to implement the plan were proposed.

Disclaimer Statement:The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.


Last updated: December 1, 2023

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