About the research
Transportation infrastructure is a complex system of different assets (such as bridges and pavements) that are required to function cohesively and deliver a host of different services and functions. The integration of risk-based approaches under extreme weather events and climate change adaptation can complicate the life-cycle delivery of the services. This requires a holistic approach that can take into account not only the predictable asset deterioration but also incorporate new models for risk assessment and life-cycle planning, to come up with suitable planning approaches for adaptation and mitigation strategies.
Following the requirements of Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21), the Iowa Department of Transportation is developing a risk-based asset management plan for the National Highway System (NHS) to improve and preserve the condition of the assets and the performance of the system. The continued development and use of the asset management systems and performance-based decision making raises the question as to how the risks associated with climate change and extreme events can be linked to the asset management tools and decision-making processes.
The goal of the research is to incorporate climate change and extreme weather considerations into Transportation Asset Management Plans (TAMPs). In particular, this study will:
- Examine the linkage between the recently completed FHWA-funded Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment Pilot by the Iowa DOT —and other ongoing efforts for the vulnerability assessment, enhancing resilience, and next generation life cycle cost analysis tools within the Iowa DOT—and the risk-based TAMP in response to the MAP-21 legislation.
- Develop proxy indicators specific to the state of Iowa and applicable to the other Midwest states that could eventually be integrated in the updated Vulnerability Assessment Scoring Tool (VAST).
- Generate a network-level, life-cycle planning framework that accounts for the impact of recurrent extreme events such as flooding and is integrated into TAMPs.
- Develop guidelines for implementation of the developed framework not only by the other states with similar extreme events but also with other partners and collaborators.