SPR 19-576: Construction-Ready Digital Terrain Models

Grants and Contracts Details


This Research Program for the period July 1, 2018 to June 30, 2020 is submitted in compliance with the provisions of Section 307 of Title 23, United States Code, and describes programs and operations for planning activities in the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) and the Kentucky Cooperative Transportation Research Program (KCTRP). This program modifies and updates such programs and is specifically intended to reflect the needs of the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. It is fully expected that products from this program will also have national applications. The University of Kentucky Transportation Center is the main research group for the the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. The SPR grant is the funding the is supplied each year for the many topics the Center is asked to research for KYTC The KCTRP is concerned with the development and conduct of a comprehensive research program in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). In addition to research developed in cooperation with FHWA, the KCTRP may perform other services for the KYTC on a nonparticipating basis. The scope of these services could include activities such as research studies and special investigations of various engineering and operation activities. The Research Program and Implementation Advisory Committee (RPIAC), headed by the State Highway Engineer and coordinated through the Research Coordinator, will give direction to the research program. The construction industry's use of digital terrain models (DTMs) has dramatically improved production and efficiency. KYTC designers and consultants, however, have confronted obstacles in their efforts to use DTMs effectively. Specifically, the rapid proliferation of and advances in DTM technology have made it difficult to consistently prepare construction-reacjy DTMs for Cabinet inspectors and contractors. That is, while designers incorporate the necessary level of detail into their DTMs to complete a design, when DTM files are handed over to inspectors or contractors, they require significant adjustments or reformatting to render tl1em usable, or they are scrapped entirely. Editing and reformatting DTMs is time-consuming and hinders project execution. The Cabinet will benefit from guidance that assists designers in preparing DTMs that are properly formatted, contain an appropriate level of detail to enable their in1mediate use in the field, and require minimal editing. OBJECTIVES • Collect data from KYTC and consultant designers to determine the current practice of producing DTMs on KYTC highway projects. • Work with K.YTC inspectors and contractors to evaluate how DTMs are currently used, including difficulties and suggested improvements. • Develop KYTC-specific guidelines for producing and using DTMs on highway construction projects.
Effective start/end date7/1/186/30/20


  • KY Transportation Cabinet


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