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Research Projects (2005-06)

Identifying Number


Project Title

Design/Build vs Traditional Construction User Delay Modeling: An Evaluation of the Cost Effectiveness of Innovative Construction Methods for New Construction


University of Utah

Project Investigator

Peter Martin
University of Utah
Phone: (801)581-7144
Fax: (801)585-5860

External Project Contact


Project Objective

This study will address the following objectives:

Part 1: The project will build a model for Davis County and Utah County. The model will serve other studies that will be used to assess innovative contracting techniques.

Part 2: Replace existing VISUM modeling software with its real-time counterpart VISUM-Online. Connect VISUM-Online with UDOT databases for complete and updated information from road network.

Project Abstract

Highway construction disrupts the traveling public. The traditional form of contract is to design-bid-build. The "Design-Build" method designs and constructs simultaneously saving time. The congestion savings offset the extra cost of the fast-track approach. This project will construct detailed travel models using "VSUM," comparing the congestion delay, emissions and safety user-costs for 18 to 20 scenarios on 5 local highway projects to provide a cost-benefit comparison. The scenarios will include the following:

  • No Build
  • Traditional Contracting
  • Fast-Track Contracting Methods

Task Descriptions

The following major tasks are proposed:

  1. Collect data to construct the model and validate it for each construction project.
  2. Simulate the selected scenarios for multiple time periods. (5, 7 and 10 years)
  3. Compare the users costs for delay, emissions and safety to develop a network cost for each scenario.
  4. Prepare conclusions and recommendations to minimize costs to UDOT and the traveling public.

Milestones, Dates

Starting Date: July 1, 2005
Ending Date: June 30, 2006

Yearly and Total Budget


Student Involvement

Four graduate students part time (semester) full time (vacations)

Relationship to Other Research Projects

Continues a smaller pilot study fund by Utah Department of Transportation.

Technology Transfer Activities

Project meetings; presentations; interim reports; final report

Potential Benefits of the Project

State procurement procedures could be modified. Other states could learn from the process, reducing delay due to construction disruption.

TRB Keywords

Design/build, construction

NDSU Dept 2880P.O. Box 6050Fargo, ND 58108-6050