136.7 Design

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Figures
Fig. 136.7.1,Dimensional Accuracy
Fig. 136.7.2, Utility Depth and Encasement Requirements
Fig. 136.7.3, Blank Structure Inventory and Appraisal Sheet
Fig. 136.7.4, LFD Load Rating Summary Sheet
Fig. 136.7.5, LRFR Load Rating Summary Sheet
Fig. 136.7.6, Example Notice of Public Hearing
Federal-Aid Essential Videos
Project Development
Civil Rights

Contents

137.7.1 Introduction

EPG 136.7 Design includes information and guidance on the approved Standards and Specifications for use on federal-aid projects. The LPA will determine the appropriate design criteria using a practical approach based on the LPA needs, project location (surrounding context), posted speed limits, functional classification, project purpose and need, system continuity, average annual daily traffic (AADT) and safety.

The LPA must receive authorization of preliminary engineering (PE) funds from MoDOT prior to incurring any PE costs. Any PE costs incurred prior to federal obligation of PE funds will not be eligible for reimbursement. This applies to costs related to consultant contracts for professional engineering services and to costs related to LPA staff for which reimbursement is sought. Preliminary engineering costs may be incurred only up to the construction contract award. Design changes during construction will be paid using Construction Engineering funds. More specific guidance and information regarding Obligation of Funds is found in EPG 136.3.6 Obligation of Funds.

136.7.2 Policies

In general, the policies that govern work on streets, highways and public rights of way should conform to those contained within 23CFR 625 – Design Standards for Highways. For work on the National Highway System (NHS) AASHTO Standards are used and approved state or local standards are used for non-NHS routes. Since MoDOT’s Engineering Policy Guide (EPG) falls within substantial compliance with AASHTO’s Standards, it is an excellent guide for work both on and off the NHS. LPA’s that have their own policies and standards may design and construct projects accordingly, provided those policies follow the applicable state and federal regulations. Irrespective of the specification source, Missouri state statute dictates that the plans specifications and estimates for public road work must be prepared by or under the immediate supervision of a registered professional engineer.

The remainder of this article covers general design guidelines for various elements of design, of a local facility. The topics shown are not intended to be a standalone guide, but rather to depict a general state of the practice, discuss any nuances with a particular element, and point to resources that provide the needed level of detail to accomplish a project.

136.7.2.1 Roadways

136.7.2.1.1 Geometrics

The elements of roadway geometry generally consist of the three dimensions of horizontal alignment, vertical alignment and cross section. General controls for these elements are given in AASHTO’s A Policy on Geometric Design of Streets and Highways and in EPG 230 Alignment of the Roadway and EPG 231 Typical Section Elements for Roadways.

To maximize the value of the project the LPA should strive for as much flexibility in geometric design as possible. A helpful resource for this endeavor is AASHTO’s A Guide for Achieving Flexibility in Highway Design.

136.7.2.1.2 Bases and Pavements

Pavements are used to provide adequate support for loads imposed by traffic. The subgrade, base and underdrainage must function together with the pavement to provide a uniformly firm, stable, and smooth surface, suitable for use in all weather. Some helpful guidance for pavement design is AASHTO’s Guide for the Design of Pavement Structures and EPG 300 Bases, EPG 400 Flexible Pavement and EPG 500 Rigid Pavement.

The LPA should consider bidding pavements as either alternates or optional pavements. This forces the market to decide whether rigid or flexible pavements are the most cost-effective solution. Guidance for the alternate and optional bidding processes can be found in EPG 136.7.5.2 Alternate or Optional Bidding.

136.7.2.1.3 Roadside Design

Roadside design is the design of the area outside of the traveled way. The key area of design emphasis is very important to both safety and the environment..

136.7.2.1.3.1 Safety

Statistics show that the roadside environment comes into play in a significant percentage of fatal and serious injury crashes. For this reason, the area outside of the traveled way should be as forgiving to the errant driver as possible and free of fixed obstacles with stable, flattened slopes which enhances the opportunity for reducing crash severity.

In general, roadside safety can be accomplished by the following actions, listed in order of preference:

1. Remove the obstacle
2. Redesign the obstacle to be safely traversable
3. Relocate the obstacle
4. Use an appropriate breakaway device
5. Shield the obstacle with a longitudinal barrier
6. Delineate the obstacle

AASHTO’s Roadside Design Guide is the primary resource for guidance in roadside safety. EPG 606 Guardrail and Guard Cable is also helpful.

136.7.2.1.3.2 Aesthetics

Occasionally, the purpose and need of the work will necessitate the use of aesthetic applications. When this is the case, the LPA should consider baseline applications that represent minimal costs to the project (i.e. form liners, tinted concrete etc.), can be reasonably maintained, and do not compromise safety. As much as possible, the aesthetics should complement the surrounding area.

136.7.2.1.4 Traffic Control

136.7.2.1.4.1 Work Zone Traffic Control

The LPA shall develop and implement a Transportation Management Plan (TMP) in sustained consultation with all stakeholders of the project and in accordance with 23CFR630.1002-1110.

The TMP shall consist of strategies to manage work zone impacts and provide for the safe and efficient movement of motorized and non-motorized traffic through or around the construction. A significant project is one that, alone or in combination with other concurrent projects nearby, is anticipated to cause sustained work zone impacts greater than what is considered tolerable. For non-significant projects the TMP will consist of the Temporary Traffic Control plan. For those projects determined to have significant impact on the public, the TMP shall consist of the Temporary Traffic Control Plan, the Transportation Operation Plan, and the Public Information Plan. See EPG 136.7.2.4.4 for more information on ADA Work Zones. The LPA shall designate a trained person on each project who has the primary responsibility, with sufficient authority, for implementing the TMP and other safety and mobility aspects of the project.

The Temporary Traffic Control Plan describes the actual control measures to be used to facilitate the movement of system users through or around the construction. The temporary traffic control plan shall conform to the guidelines established in Chapter 6 of the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD). EPG 616 Temporary Traffic Control and EPG 616.23 Traffic Control for Field Operations may be used as references in the development of the temporary traffic control plan. The scope and level of detail of the traffic control plan should match the complexity of the project.

The Transportation Operation Plan identifies strategies to be used to mitigate impacts of the work zone on the operation and management of the transportation system within the work zone impact area.

The Public Information Plan details the communication strategies to be used to inform affected road users, the general public, area residents and businesses, and appropriate public and transportation entities about the project, the expected impacts of the work and changing conditions.

The plans and specifications should include the job special provisions and pay items for implementing the TMP, including any provisions to provide, install, move, replace, maintain, clean, and remove any temporary traffic control devices required by the temporary traffic control plan. Lump sum payment for all TMP traffic control pay items is not allowed. As a minimum separate pay items must be provided for positive protection devices (i.e. temporary concrete barrier, barricades, etc.). It is also recommended to separate lump sum pay items for striping and signing because they are usually subcontracted work. A Job Special Provision (JSP) must be included and should provide sufficient details such that the quantity and types of devices and the overall effort to implement and maintain the TMP can be determined. See EPG 136.7.4 Engineer’s Estimate and CFR 630.1012 for further information. Also see EPG 136.7.3.1.2.1.1 Traffic Control for information on the Traffic Control required JSP.

136.7.2.1.4.2 Pavement Marking

The pavement marking plan has an important function in providing guidance and information for the road user. Major marking types include pavement and curb markings, object markers, delineators, colored pavements, barricades, channelizing devices and islands. In some cases, markings are used to supplement other traffic control devices such as signs, signals and other markings. In other instances, markings are used alone to effectively convey regulations, guidance, or warnings in ways not obtainable by the use of other devices.

The pavement marking plan shall conform to the guidelines set forth in Sec 3A of the MUTCD. EPG 620 Pavement Marking may be used as a reference in the development of the pavement marking plan.

136.7.2.1.4.3 Signing

Highway signs are directly related to the design of the highway and are used to effectively convey information needed for travelers to safely and efficiently complete trips. Signs must have uniformity of meaning. Excessive or inadequate signing can cause traveler confusion.

Types of highway signing include guide, regulatory, warning, specific service signs, tourist-oriented directional, recreational and cultural interest, emergency management, and conventional road guide signs. Traffic controls for schools may be required to be addressed as well as traffic controls for highway-rail grade crossings. EPG 903 Highway Signing outlines procedures for the preparation of contract signing plans. Before beginning sign selection or location, the following are to be reviewed: EPG 903 Highway Signing, the guidelines of the MUTCD and FHWA's Standard Highway Signs manual. It is important to use standard sign design and layouts in order to provide consistent signing throughout the state of Missouri. MoDOT district personnel are responsible for proper review of signing plans for accuracy, to ensure standards are met or that deviations from the standards are justified.

EPG 903 also addresses the extent of signing and design of sign supports. It provides typical signing applications and guidance for preparation of sign plans as well as highway signing general information and other signing items.

136.7.2.1.4.4 Signals

Traffic control signals are not to be installed unless one or more of the signal warrants contained in the MUTCD are met, and the installation of signals considered justified. Traffic signals are electrically powered traffic control devices that warn or direct vehicular and pedestrian traffic to take some specific action. Traffic signals provide for the orderly assignment of right of way to conflicting traffic movements at intersections.

Traffic signals are not a complete solution for traffic problems. Traffic signals can sometime create additional congestion and cause additional delay to vehicles if improperly designed, installed or maintained. Correctly designed and operated traffic signals installed at warranted locations will provide for the orderly movement of traffic, increase the intersection capacity, and may help to reduce accidents. The coordination of phasing and timing of signals is very important. EPG 902 Signals provides the basis for installation of traffic signals, and discusses basic types of signal control equipment and hardware and their characteristics, uses, applications, operations and maintenance. The policies, standards and guidelines set forth herein are in general accordance with the MUTCD most recent edition and the subsequent rulings on requests for interpretations, changes, and experimentation. The design of signals often requires consideration of the aesthetic and maintenance aspects of the project. The selection of signal equipment must follow the requirements of EPG 136.7.2.8 Proprietary Items.

136.7.2.1.4.5 Lighting

Nighttime crash rates are higher than daytime rates partially due to reduced visibility. Fixed-source lighting such as luminaires tend to reduce crashes in urban and suburban areas with concentrations of pedestrians and intersections. When designing, installing, programming and maintaining lighting, the lighting source intensity and circuiting must be addressed. Guidelines for high pressure sodium luminaires roadway illumination, future lighting and dusk-to-dawn lighting policy are discussed in EPG 901 Lighting.

As there are many aspects to be considered when inspecting construction quality of lighting EPG 901 provides guidelines for construction inspection, material inspection and laboratory testing. In addition, EPG 901 includes a discussion on the preparation of plans, electrical components, and guidance for nonstandard lighting structures. The design of lighting often requires consideration of the aesthetic and maintenance aspects of the project. The selection of lighting equipment must follow the requirements of EPG 136.7.2.8 Proprietary Items.

136.7.2.1.5 Highway Drainage and Erosion Control

136.7.2.1.5.1 Drainage

An important part of the design of any roadway project has to include an evaluation of highway drainage. Highway drainage will typically include items such as bridges, larger culverts, smaller culverts, drainage pipes, storm sewers, and open channels.

When determining the appropriate design parameters for drainage on a roadway project, things such as the functional class, AADT, importance of the route, and the needs of the local community should be combined with a good practical engineering approach to determine the best design for the project. The design should also take into consideration other drainage structures in the area when determining the appropriate design parameters for the new drainage structure. In some situations, federal or state laws may govern some of the design parameters. Additionally, the LPA may have ordinances or regulations that impact the design of these items. The engineer of record is ultimately responsible for determining the appropriate design parameters for highway drainage on projects.

There are several national manuals that can be used for reference and guidance in the design of highway drainage. These include FHWA's Introduction to Highway Hydraulics, HDS-4, 2001; FHWA's Hydraulic Design of Highway Culverts, HDS-5, 2001; FHWA's Urban Drainage Design Manual, HEC-22 3rd Edition, 1992; and AASHTO's Highway Drainage Guidelines 4th Edition, 2007. Additionally, MoDOT's EPG has information related to the design of drainage structures. EPG 640.1 Pavement Drainage, EPG 748 Hydraulics and Drainage, EPG 749 Hydrologic Analysis and EPG 750 Hydraulic Analysis provide information on the approaches used by MoDOT in the design of these types of structures. These EPG articles can be used by the engineer of record as guidance for designing highway drainage on LPA projects. When an LPA project involves highway drainage that will be located on MoDOT right of way, the design of these items shall be in accordance with the EPG.

136.7.2.1.5.2 Erosion Control

For all federally funded projects, the engineer of record will be responsible for ensuring that the design, construction, and operation of the project minimizes erosion and sediment damage to the highway and adjacent properties and abates pollution of surface and ground water resources. Some helpful guidance for the development of erosion control plans can be found in EPG 806 Pollution, Erosion and Sediment Control. The federal Clean Water Act and related state rules and regulations require stormwater permits for construction activities that disturb areas of one acre or more. More information on the requirements for stormwater permits can be found in EPG 136.6.4.8 Stormwater and Erosion Control.

136.7.2.1.6 Roadway Plans

136.7.2.1.6.1 Minimum Plan Requirements

The engineer of record is responsible for determining the appropriate level of detail to provide on roadway plans. Sufficient detail shall be provided so as to clearly identify all material, dimensional requirements, location, design features and construction requirements.

The plans should include information regarding:

  • Plan/Profile
  • Right of Way lines
  • Utilities - All existing and proposed facilities must be shown on the plan sheets. The minimum depth locations and encasement requirements for the utilities located on MHTC Right of Way are available.
  • Temporary Traffic Control (TTC) Plan in accordance with 23 CFR Part 630
  • Survey Control
  • Erosion Control Plan in accordance with 23 CFR 635.309 and EPG 136.7.2.1.5.2
  • All plans must be signed and sealed by a registered Professional Engineer
  • The title sheet must also be signed by the LPA
  • Title sheet must include the construction specifications to be used

136.7.2.1.6.2 Cost Estimates

The engineer of record shall prepare a final cost estimate, engineer’s estimate, for the project as described in EPG 136.7.4.

136.7.2.2 Structures

EPG 136.7.2.2 provides general guidance for the design of structures on federally funded LPA projects. More specific design criteria may be found at the various links to design manuals that are provided in the different parts of this article.

MoDOT generally provides a cursory review of structures on LPA. This review will not include detailed checking of design calculations or plans. This basic cursory review of the plans and other submitted information will be completed to verify that all required deliverables have been submitted and that the structural aspects of the project meet the basic program eligibility requirements. The LPA along with their engineer of record will ultimately be responsible for ensuring that all program requirements have been met.

136.7.2.2.1 Funding/Programs

The following sections provide general information on the types of federal funding programs available for the rehabilitation and replacement of bridges and culverts that are on the National Bridge Inventory (NBI).

136.7.2.2.1.1 Highway Bridge Program (HBP)

Federal funds are available for the replacement or rehabilitation of LPA bridges and culverts that are deficient based on designated NBI items. These funds are divided into two categories BRO and BRM. BRO funds are used for bridges and culverts that are located on non-federal routes. BRM funds are used for bridges and culverts that are located on federal routes. Detailed eligibility requirements for these two funding categories can be found in EPG 136.3.8.1 Highway Bridge Program (BRO & BRM).

136.7.2.2.1.2 Surface Transportation Program (STP)

STP funds are a broad class of funds that can be used for a variety of highway related improvements on LPA roadways. STP funds are subcategorized into Attributable (Large Urban) and Non-Attributable (Small Urban) funds. Eligibility requirements will vary depending on the functional classification of the route as well as the type of project. Detailed eligibility requirements for STP funding on bridge and culvert projects can be found in EPG 136.3.8.2 Surface Transportation Program (STP) Large Urban – Attributable and EPG 136.3.8.3 Surface Transportation Program (STP) Small Urban – Non-Attributable.

136.7.2.2.1.3 Soft Match Credit

An LPA can elect to replace BRO eligible bridges and culverts with their own funds and then apply for Soft Match Credit for 80% of the funds expended. Once approved, the soft match credit can then be used as the local match for future HBP eligible bridge and culvert projects. More specific requirements for earning and spending Soft Match Credit funds can be found in EPG 136.3.10 Bridge Soft Match Credit.

136.7.2.2.1.4 Work by Local Forces

With advanced approval and only under certain specific conditions, an LPA may perform varying aspects of work on federally funded bridge or culvert replacement/rehabilitation projects utilizing their own existing workforce. The requirements and specific conditions that must be met can be found in EPG 136.3.12 Federal-Aid Participation for Local Work.

136.7.2.2.2 General Types of Structures

For clarification and the purposes of various parts of this section, the following definitions or information is being provided for different structure types.

136.7.2.2.2.1 Highway Bridges and Culverts

For the purposes of this chapter, highway bridges and culverts will be defined as structures meeting the requirements to be inventoried on the NBI. From a more basic standpoint, this will include structures that are on public highways carrying vehicular traffic and are 20 ft. or longer. MoDOT Bridge Division’s oversight efforts on federally funded LPA projects will be focused on structures meeting these requirements.

136.7.2.2.2.2 Non-NBI Length Bridges and Culverts

Bridge and culvert structures that are shorter than 20 ft. will be classified as non-NBI structures. The general design guidance provided in this article should be used for structures falling under this category. Structures falling under this category will not be reviewed by MoDOT Bridge Division unless they are replacing a structure that was NBI length. Submittal of the normal deliverables that apply to highway bridges and culverts will not be required unless the structure is replacing an NBI length structure.

136.7.2.2.2.3 Pedestrian Structures

Pedestrian structures will be defined as structures that are only intended for the use of pedestrians and other non-vehicular traffic. These types of structures are beyond the oversight role provided by MoDOT, except as specified in EPG 136.7.2.2.2.5 Structures on MoDOT Right of Way.

137.7.2.2.2.4 Retaining Walls

Retaining walls may be used on various LPA projects. Submittal of information related to retaining walls is normally not required unless the wall is an integral part of a highway bridge or culvert. If the wall is an integral part of a highway bridge or culvert, normal design and plan requirements related to highway bridge and culvert projects will apply. When any portion of a retaining wall is located on MoDOT right of way, the requirements in EPG 136.7.2.2.2.5 Structures on MoDOT Right of Way will apply.

136.7.2.2.2.5 Structures on MoDOT Right of Way

Proposed structures that will either be located on or cross over MoDOT right of way will require additional review, by MoDOT. At a minimum, this additional review should take place during the preliminary design stage and at the PS&E stage of the project. The use of MoDOT policies and procedures shall be required for these projects.

136.7.2.2.3 Deficiencies for Bridges and Culverts

The primary focus of the federally funded bridge program is to eliminate any existing deficiency when a structure is replaced or rehabilitated. The proposed project will result in an improvement that is safer than the existing site conditions with safety issues being addressed or mitigated; the proposed project will be in compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations; and that the structural improvements made at the site will result in a structure that will last a minimum of 25 years before the development of any significant deficiencies.

The engineer of record is responsible for determining the appropriate design parameters for bridges and culverts based on existing site conditions as well as the needs of the LPA. This will provide the engineer of record and the LPA with the greatest flexibility in investigating design alternatives as in optimizing the available funds for a project in order to build what is needed at the project sight. In some situations, this may result in an item that is considered deficient based on current standards. When this situation occurs, the engineer of record is required to request a Design Exception for this deficient item and must provide documentation with this request to justify the proposed deficiency. MoDOT will review and approve the Design Exception along with the provided documentation, and when applicable, forward the information to FHWA for their approval. This information should be submitted in the early stages of the project to avoid the potential of delays or any unnecessary engineering work. See EPG 136.9.2.7 Design Exceptions/Variances for more Design Exception Information. It should be noted that the removal of all deficiencies may not be applicable for projects funded using STP funds. For projects using STP funds, the engineer of record should verify the requirements for removal of deficiencies based on the most current federal legislation.

The following articles provide more insight on the deficient items that are designated within NBI data as well as other items that may be considered deficient or substandard for the classification of roadway that a bridge is located on. The following table is a general summary of the various NBI deficient items.

EPG ArticleNBI Item # Structure Component Deficient Level
136.7.2.2.3.158Deck Condition 4 or below
136.7.2.2.3.159Superstructure Condition 4 or below
136.7.2.2.3.160 Substructure Condition 4 or below
136.7.2.2.3.162 Culvert Condition 4 or below
136.7.2.2.3.2 67Structural Evaluation 3 or below
136.7.2.2.3.3 68Deck Geometry3 or below
136.7.2.2.3.4 69Under Clearance 3 or below
136.7.2.2.3.5 71Waterway Adequacy3 or below1
136.7.2.2.3.672 Approach Roadway Alignment3 or below
1 Applicable if NBI Item 42B (Type of Service Under) is coded with 0, or 5 thru 9.

136.7.2.2.3.1 Structural Condition-NBI Items 58, 59, 60 & 62

For bridges that are included on the NBI, a numeric condition rating is assigned by the bridge inspector for the Deck (Item 58), Superstructure (Item 59), and the Substructure (Item 60). When the assigned conditions rating is less than or equal to “4”, the bridge is considered deficient. For culvert type structures that are included on the NBI, a numeric condition rating is assigned by the bridge inspector that represents the overall condition of the culvert (Item 62). When the assigned conditions rating is less than or equal to “4”, the bridge is considered deficient.

136.7.2.2.3.2 Load Capacity-NBI Item 67

NBI Item 67 is classified as the Structural Evaluation Rating for a structure. It is assessed based on the lowest condition rating of the bridge or culvert as well as the load capacity of the structure. When this assessed value is less than or equal to “3”, the structure is considered deficient.

136.7.2.2.3.3 Bridge Width and Vertical Overclearance-NBI Item 68

NBI Item 68 is classified as the Deck Geometry Rating for a structure. It is typically assessed based on the curb to curb roadway width on the structure, but may also be assessed based on the vertical clearance over the structure. The majority of the time, this item is determined based on the curb to curb roadway width on the structure. The most common example where this item may be determined based on the vertical clearance over the structure would be thru trusses. When the assessed value is less than or equal to “3”, the structure is considered deficient.

136.7.2.2.3.4 Vertical Underclearance and Lateral Clearances-NBI Item 69

NBI Item 69 is classified as the Vertical and Horizontal Underclearance Rating for a structure. It is only determined for bridges that cross another highway or a railroad. When the assessed value is less than or equal to “3”, the structure is considered deficient.

136.7.2.2.3.5 Waterway Adequacy-NBI Item 71

NBI Item 71 is classified as the Waterway Adequacy Rating for a structure. It is only assigned for structures that cross waterways and takes into account the frequency of flooding at the structure and the length of delays that result from this flooding. When the assigned value is less than or equal to “3”, the structure is considered deficient.

136.7.2.2.3.6 Approach Roadway Alignment-NBI Item 72

NBI Item 72 is classified as the Approach Roadway Alignment Rating for a structure and is a measure of the adequacy of the alignment of the approach roadway on each side of a structure. When the assigned value is less than or equal to “3”, the structure is considered deficient.

136.7.2.2.3.7 Scour Rating-NBI Item 113

NBI Item 113 is the Scour Rating for a structure and represents the vulnerability of the structure to scour based on calculated and/or field observed scour conditions at the site. Although this item is not directly considered when determining bridge deficiencies for federal funding eligibility purposes, this item has to be reviewed on structures that are being considered for rehabilitation and the appropriate actions taken to address any concerns that have been identified. Rehabilitation projects for existing structures where the value for this item is less than or equal to “4” shall address the scour problems at the site in an appropriate manner. For projects where the value for this item is equal to “5”, it is recommended that scour issues be investigated for the structure and appropriate actions taken, if deemed necessary. For new structures, it is expected that a scour analysis will be done as part of the design of the structure and that the scour rating of the new bridge would be greater than or equal to “8”.

136.7.2.2.3.8 Load Postings

Replacement structures shall be designed in a manner such that the proposed structure will not require load posting for normal legal loads allowed in the jurisdiction in which the structure is located. For structures located within Commercial Zone areas of the state, as designated by state law, a load posting would be acceptable provided that the posting is greater than 40 tons for tractor-trailer combination vehicles. Commercial zone boundaries are defined on the Missouri Vehicle Route Map that is periodically produced by MoDOT.

For rehabilitated structures, it is recommended that the design parameters of the project be chosen such that no load posting is required or there will be an improvement in the load posting for normal legal loads allowed in the jurisdiction in which the structure is located. However, it is recognized that there will be situations where elimination or an improvement in the load posting on a structure may not be the most prudent use of the federal funds available for the project. When this scenario is encountered, the engineer of record must submit a design exception which includes a summary of their findings and recommendations regarding load postings and submit it to MoDOT for review and concurrence.

136.7.2.2.3.9 Bridge and Approach Railings

The existing bridge railings, approach railings, transition railings, and end treatments shall be reviewed by the engineer of record to determine if improvements in the safety of these systems are needed. Good engineering judgment should be used when determining the appropriate railings and treatments with consideration given to things such as accident history, traffic volumes, and roadway classifications. As a general rule, the treatments chosen for the project should represent a significant improvement in the safety at the site when compared with the existing conditions. More guidance on the specific requirements for bridge railings and end treatments on LPA projects can be found in EPG 136.7.2.2.5.13 Railing.

136.7.2.2.3.10 Sufficiency Rating

The Sufficiency Rating is determined for bridges and culverts as part of the NBI data that is submitted to FHWA each year. It is an overall measure of the adequacy of a structure at a given site and is calculated by a computer program provided by FHWA.

The Sufficiency Rating is used to categorize the level of work that may be needed on deficient structures being considered for replacement or rehabilitation using HBP funding. If this rating is less than or equal to 50.0, then the structure is eligible for replacement or full funding. If this rating is greater than 50.0, but less than or equal to 80.0, then the structure is eligible for rehabilitation or partial funding. When the rating is greater than 80.0, the structure is not eligible for any federal funding. It should be noted that it is possible to have a structure that has this rating fall within the boundaries for replacement or rehabilitation and not be deficient, which results in the structure not being eligible for the use of HBP funds.

136.7.2.2.4 Design Guidelines and Resources

136.7.2.2.4.1 General

The design philosophy for federally funded bridge projects is to promote the use of good engineering judgment based on project specific site conditions. Although there is an expectation that applicable national codes and design guidelines will generally be followed, this does not mean it is necessary to rigidly follow the “design standard” philosophy (for example, one size fits all) in order for a project to be eligible. MoDOT’s programs are designed to allow the LPA and the engineer of record the flexibility to build a safe and economical project that meets the needs of the LPA and general public in order to maximize limited funding and resources.

136.7.2.2.4.2 AASHTO Manuals

The engineer of record shall be responsible for determining the appropriate design method to be used for the design of structures on an LPA project. The use of the Load Factor (LFD) design method is acceptable and AASHTO guidance on this method can be found in the Standard Specifications for Highway Bridges, 17th Edition. The use of the Load and Resistance Factor (LRFD) design method is also acceptable and AASHTO guidance on this method can be found in the LRFD Bridge Design Specifications. Although the use of the LRFD design method is encouraged for all projects, it is not required unless the structure being designed is on MoDOT right of way.

For guidance on items such as appropriate roadway geometrics and appropriate safety features on projects involving structures, the AASHTO manuals Roadside Design Guide and Guidelines for Geometric Design of Very Low-Volume Local Roads (ADT ≤ 400) should be consulted. The engineer of record is responsible for determining the appropriate parameters to use based on guidance from these manuals along with practical design considerations and input from the LPA. For structures that are on MoDOT right of way or on the NHS, MoDOT design standards and guidelines shall be used.

AASHTO guidance on load ratings for bridge structures can be found in The Manual for Bridge Evaluation. The load rating method used to perform a load rating analysis on a bridge or culvert shall be consistent with the design method used for that structure.

136.7.2.2.4.3 FHWA Manuals

Guidance for inventorying bridges and culverts that are NBI length (20’ or greater in length) can be found in the Recording and Coding Guide for the Structure Inventory and Appraisal of the Nation’s Bridges (RCG) and also available at EPG 753 Bridge Inspection Rating. It should be noted that the RCG is currently in a metric format. Inventory data provided on LPA projects should be in English units.

136.7.2.2.4.4 MoDOT Policy

Guidance for the design and hydraulic analysis of highway structures has been developed, with the primary focus being on bridge and culvert structures. Information for other types of structures is also available, but it is not as detailed. The guidance that has been developed for all structure types can be found in EPG 700 Structures and Hydraulics.

More specific guidance for LRFD design of bridges can be found in EPG 751 LRFD Bridge Design Guidelines. EPG 751 can be used for guidance on designing LPA bridges and culverts using the LRFD design method. Structures located on MoDOT right of way must be designed using LRFD.

More specific guidance for inventorying and load rating of bridges and culverts can be found in EPG 753 Bridge Inspection Rating. EPG 753 should be used for completing Structure Inventory and Appraisal (SI&A) sheets for bridges and for performing load rating analysis on structures.

MoDOT has also developed the Standard Plans for Highway Construction and the Standard Specifications for Highway Construction. These standards can be used for different aspects of LPA projects, as deemed necessary by the engineer of record. The use of these standards is encouraged because many contractors are already familiar with these plans and specifications and may provide more competitive bid prices on projects where they are used.

136.7.2.2.4.5 Retaining Walls and Pedestrian Structures

For retaining walls and pedestrian structures that are either located on or cross MoDOT right of way, the MoDOT and AASHTO manuals listed above shall be used for guidance on the appropriate design parameters. When these types of structures do not fall on MoDOT right of way, the above manuals along with local building codes and ordinances shall be used as considered appropriate by the engineer of record in keeping with good engineering practice.

When pedestrian structures cross over state owned roadways, MoDOT requirements for vertical and horizontal clearance shall be followed. The proposed clearances for these projects shall be submitted to MoDOT for approval and acceptance during the preliminary design of the project. In addition, an SI&A as found in EPG 136.7.2.2.6.3 Structure Inventory and Appraisal Sheet shall be completed and submitted in the same manner as for a normal highway bridge.

136.7.2.2.5 Preliminary Design

136.7.2.2.5.1 General Guidance

The engineer of record is responsible for determining the appropriate design parameters to be used on a project. These design parameters should be chosen such that all of the deficiencies currently at a project site are addressed resulting in safer site conditions. Additionally, the proposed structure should result in a structure that will not have any significant deficiencies for at least 25 years.

MoDOT will focus oversight efforts on federally funded bridge and culvert projects at the PS&E submittal stage. Submittal of the proposed details or plans for a project is not required at the preliminary design stage for normal highway bridge and culvert projects, and submitted details will not be reviewed by MoDOT unless there are specific questions related to the eligibility of the proposed project. If the engineer of record has specific questions on a project, they may submit those questions in writing along with any appropriate details for MoDOT’s review and guidance. For projects that are located on or cross over MoDOT right of way, submittal of preliminary plans for review and approval by MoDOT is required. Submitted information shall be sent to the MoDOT district representative.

If the LPA decides to pursue replacement of a structure that is only eligible for partial funding, then cost estimate information as specified in EPG 136.7.2.2.5.2 Structure Replacement versus Rehabilitation must be provided to MoDOT for review and approval during the preliminary design stage of the project.

136.7.2.2.5.2 Structure Replacement versus Rehabilitation

Annually, MoDOT produces a list of LPA structures that are eligible for federal funding based on the most current inventory and inspection information. Structures eligible for federal funding will be categorized as being eligible for full funding or partial funding. For structures eligible for full funding, replacement of the structure is assumed to provide the best value for the funds being spent. For structures eligible for partial funding, rehabilitation of the structure to remove all of the deficiencies is generally considered to be the best value for the funds being spent.

The LPA may elect to replace a structure that is only eligible for partial funding. When this decision is made, the engineer of record must provide a detailed estimate of the rehabilitation cost for the structure and the cost for a replacement structure. If the cost for rehabilitation is at least 68% of the cost for a replacement structure, then it will generally be assumed that the new replacement structure will provide better value than rehabilitation and therefore would be the best use of the federal funds. Whenever the cost for rehabilitation is less than 68% of the cost for a replacement structure, the LPA may still elect to go ahead and replace the structure instead of rehabilitating it. However, when this situation happens, the amount of eligible federal funding for the project will be limited to the amount determined in the rehabilitation cost estimate. See EPG 136.3.8.1.2 Project Eligibility and Selection for general information.

136.7.2.2.5.3 Low Water Crossings

When a proposed project involves the potential replacement of a low water crossing with a bridge, the eligibility of the project has to be reviewed and approved by MoDOT. In order to review and make a final determination on the eligibility of the project, the engineer of record or the LPA shall submit photos and other supporting documentation to MoDOT. The photos should include approach roadway photos of the low water crossing looking both directions, a roadway photo showing the actual stream crossing, a profile view of the structure whenever it includes pipes or other openings, upstream and downstream photos of the stream, and photos of the adjacent vegetation near the existing low water crossing. Supporting documentation should also include a general description of the proposed project, some type of location map to show the location of the structure, and information on how frequently the low water crossing is impassable due to high water during a typical year. See EPG 136.3.8.1.2 Project Eligibility and Selection for general information.

136.7.2.2.5.4 Hydraulics

The engineer of record, with the assistance of the LPA, is considered responsible for the investigation of field conditions related to the items shown below.

  • Hydraulic design of the structure.
  • FEMA design restrictions as related to the National Flood Insurance Program.
  • Scour potential.
  • Embankment protection.
  • Potential channel modification requirements.
  • Impacts on upstream properties.
  • NFIP floodplain development regulations as discussed in EPG 136.6 Environmental and Cultural Requirements.
  • Other appropriate investigations or requirements.

It is advisable for the waterway opening of the new structure to be designed so as to not result in more adverse flooding conditions from those that would occur with the existing structure, assuming that the existing structure is already performing adequately. As a minimum, the bridge shall be sized appropriately so that the hydraulic performance will not result in NBI Item 71 being deficient and the bridge will not be susceptible to future significant damage caused by flooding based on the scour and drift assessment done by the engineer of record. It is generally not necessary for the engineer of record to submit the hydraulic calculations and report to MoDOT. However, the LPA should keep this information for their own records and make this information available to MoDOT and/or FHWA if requested. See EPG 136.7.2.2.3.5 Waterway Adequacy-NBI Item 71 for additional information.

136.7.2.2.5.5 Channel Modification

Channel changes alter the conditions of the natural waterway and may cause an increase in velocity of the flowing water, sometimes resulting in damage to the highway embankment near the stream or excessive scour around footings of structures. Channel modification should be minimized to the fullest extent practical. Where such change is unavoidable, an evaluation must consider the environmental, hydraulic, legal, and geomorphic aspects involved. Detailed information on channel modification can be found in EPG 136.6 Environmental and Cultural Requirements. See EPG 136.7.2.2.3.7 Scour Rating-NBI Item 113 for additional information.

136.7.2.2.5.6 Structural Plans

Preliminary design plans are not required to be submitted for typical LPA projects. If the proposed project is located on or crosses over MoDOT right of way or if the project is located adjacent to MoDOT right of way in a manner such that the project could potentially have an adverse impact on MoDOT right of way, then preliminary plans shall be submitted to MoDOT for review and approval.

136.7.2.2.5.7 Structure Type

The engineer of record shall determine the appropriate structure type to use at a given location based on site conditions and the appropriate design parameters. The use of prefabricated bridge systems is acceptable provided that the contract drawings and other documents don’t violate rules related to the use of proprietary products on federally funded projects.

If the use of a proprietary type bridge system is desired on a project, the plans and specifications have to be generically prepared with the basic performance criteria and dimensional requirements for the bridge system defined. For additional information on the specific requirements when using a proprietary bridge system, please refer to EPG 136.7.2.2.6.8 Bridge Proprietary Items.

136.7.2.2.5.8 Bridge Width

The bridge width is measured between the roadway faces of the barrier curbs on the structure. The appropriate width to use on a project is to be determined by the engineer of record with the only underlying requirement being that the roadway width chosen shall not result in a structure that is deficient for the future design year AADT.

In general, it is recommended that, as a minimum, the bridge width match the approach roadway width. The engineer of record should take into consideration the needs of the LPA as well as local users such as agriculture operations or other commercial operations. A practical design approach to the project should be considered to maximize the use of available funding for a structure. In some situations, it may be prudent to build a single lane structure. An example of this situation might be an extremely low AADT, dead end roadway that will only have passenger vehicles traveling on it.

136.7.2.2.5.9 Design Loading

The engineer of record is responsible for determining the appropriate design loading to use on a structure. The design loading should be consistent with the appropriate AASHTO design methodology. Additionally, the resulting structure should not be considered deficient based on the future design year AADT and the structure should not require a posting for normal legal loads.

136.7.2.2.5.10 Seismic Design

Seismic design of structures on LPA roadways is not required. The engineer of record should review any LPA requirements for seismic design and make a decision on the appropriate parameters based on these requirements. Because of the significant added cost for the seismic design of structures, strong consideration should be given to the traffic volumes and importance of a structure within the local roadway system along with practical design considerations before a decision is made to do seismic design on a structure.

136.7.2.2.5.11 Geotechnical Investigation

The engineer of record shall be responsible for determining the appropriate geotechnical requirements on a project. The number and locations of borings should be determined in a manner so as to allow for the adequate design of the structure foundations, side slopes, and spill slopes for structures.

136.7.2.2.5.12 Sidewalks

Sidewalks are an eligible feature on bridge structures where such access currently exists for pedestrian or combined pedestrian and bikeway use.

136.7.2.2.5.13 Railing

The engineer of record shall be responsible for determining the appropriate bridge railings, approach railings, transition railings, and railing end treatments to use on a project. Site specific conditions such as accident history, AADT, posted speed limits, sight distance, roadway width and other appropriate things should be considered along with input from the LPA to determine the best solutions for the project site. For structures that are either located on or cross MoDOT right of way, the appropriate MoDOT standards and design criteria shall be used.

For roadways with AADT ≤ 400, the use of standard height and/or crash-tested railing is optional. For guidance on this matter, the Guidelines for Geometric Design of Very Low-Volume Local Roads (ADT ≤ 400) should be used as a resource. EPG 606.1.3.9 and EPG 620.5, which provide some options being used on MoDOT owned roadways, may be used as a resource in determining the appropriate railings to use. The LPA and engineer of record may select from a variety of curbing or railing types deemed to be suitable for use based on the site specific conditions for the project.

136.7.2.2.6 Final Design

136.7.2.2.6.1 General Guidance

The engineer of record is responsible for determining the appropriate design parameters to use for structures on a project. The design of the structure should consider a practical design approach to promote the efficient use of the financial resources of the LPA. Additionally, the design should meet the needs of the LPA and shall not result in any items that will be deficient.

All information that is submitted for the project shall be in completed form and shall be signed and sealed by a professional engineer. The submittal of the design computations is not required unless specified in other areas of this section. However, the consultant or LPA are required to make these computations available upon request by MoDOT or FHWA.

136.7.2.2.6.2 Plan Information

The engineer of record is responsible for determining the appropriate level of detail to provide on structural plans. Sufficient detail shall be provided so as to clearly identify all material and dimensional requirements and allow for the construction of all structural components in accordance with the engineer’s design.

Structural drawings shall provide an appropriate general notes section that contains all pertinent design criteria for the structure. Examples of common things that should be included in the general notes section are identification of all design loads, identification of the design unit stresses for structural components, identification of the bearing pad and joint filler requirements, and identification of reinforcing steel clearances. The general notes should also identify the appropriate AASHTO design code that was used along with any significant exceptions. Additionally, the plans should indentify the applicable construction specifications (for example: Missouri Standard Specifications for Highway Construction) that are to be used for the project.

Drawings shall include a summary of estimated quantities for the structure along with a reinforcing bar list and bending diagrams. The appropriate hydraulic data, geotechnical information, a pile data table, and footing design bearing values shall be provided as the site location or design features dictate. Providing these items ensures that the contractor can provide an accurate and competitive bid based on the design plans.

136.7.2.2.6.3 Structure Inventory and Appraisal Sheet

The engineer of record must complete a Structural Inventory & Appraisal Sheet (SI&A) for all replacement and rehabilitated structures that meet the NBI definition of a bridge or culvert. The SI&A must be completed in accordance with the Recording and Coding Guide for the Structure Inventory and Appraisal of the Nation’s Bridges (RCG). Additional guidance on the completion of this item can be found in EPG 753 Bridge Inspection Rating. A blank spreadsheet version of this form, Fig. 136.7.3 is available for use.

136.7.2.2.6.4 Load Ratings

Load ratings calculations are required for all structures that will be classified as a highway bridge or culvert as defined in EPG 136.7.2.2.2.1. The load rating method used shall be consistent with the design code that was used as specified in EPG 136.7.2.2.4.2. The engineer of record shall submit a signed and sealed load rating summary sheet along with load rating calculations when the plan sheets are submitted for the project.

Occasionally, there may be a project that is designed to allow or require the contractor to use a prefabricated structural systems where the system is determined by the contractor during the bidding process. In this instance, the submittal of load rating calculations may not be possible at the plan submittal stage. When this situation occurs, the plans and specifications shall include a special provision that the manufacture of the structural system must provide the signed and sealed load rating calculations and summary sheet to the engineer of record prior to the product being delivered and accepted at the job site. These load rating calculations shall be reviewed by the engineer of record to ensure that they generally provide the necessary required information. After this review, the engineer of record shall send the load rating calculation to the Structural Services Engineer in the Bridge Division at MoDOT prior to delivery of the product to the job site. The submitted information should include the bridge number, project number, and county or city that is sponsoring the project.

For the Load Factor (LFD) rating method, the load rating summary sheet shall include load ratings at the inventory and operating level for the HS20 design vehicle. In addition, the summary sheet shall also include load ratings at the posting level for the H20 Legal and 3S2 vehicles, and at the operating level for the MO5 vehicles. Load rating guidance for the LFD method can be found in EPG 753 Bridge Inspection Rating. An example summary sheet for the LFD method, Fig. 136.7.4 is available.

For the Load and Resistance Factor (LRFR) rating method, the load rating summary sheet shall include inventory and operating design load level rating factors for the HL93 vehicle. In addition, inventory and operating design level load ratings in tons for the HS20 vehicle shall be provided for comparison to the HL93 and rating values in tons for the H20, 3S2, and MO5 vehicles shall be provided for the legal load level. MoDOT guidance for the LRFR rating method is currently under development. Until this guidance is fully developed and published in the EPG, The Manual for Bridge Evaluation shall be used for determining ratings using the LRFR method. An example summary sheet for the LRFR method, Fig. 136.7.5 is available.

136.7.2.2.6.5 Cost Estimates

The engineer of record shall prepare a final cost estimate, engineer’s estimate, for the project as described in EPG 136.7.4.

136.7.2.2.6.6 Structural Job Specifications

Specifications and, in some cases, special provisions are required for all LPA projects to ensure that the project is built in accordance with the design of the engineer of record. For information on the specification requirements for LPA projects, see EPG 136.7.3 Specifications and Standards. For information on special provisions that may be required on projects involving structures, please see EPG 136.7.3.1.2.1.8 Bridge Material Inspection/Acceptance.

136.7.2.2.6.7 Shop Drawings

Shop drawings which are prepared in conformance with the engineer’s detailed plans and specifications are not typically required to be signed and sealed by a professional engineer. However, this is not applicable for parts of projects where the contractor may be responsible for the design of that element at the shop drawing stage. Some typical examples of elements of a project that would require signed and sealed shop drawings are MSE walls, precast culverts, and prefabricated steel truss systems.

136.7.2.2.6.8 Structural Proprietary Items

A proprietary item is something that is patented or has a trademark name and is manufactured by a specific manufacturer. When the engineer of record desires to use a proprietary item on a bridge or culvert project, they must follow certain rules as discussed below when putting together the plans or specifications for the project.

The most common type of proprietary product that is used for structures is some type of prefabricated bridge, culvert, or retaining wall system. The use of these types of systems is generally allowed on LPA projects if they meet certain criteria. The plans and specifications should include key parameters to define the scope of the project such as structure and opening size, geometric dimensions, design loading, hydraulic performance needed, and the foundation requirements. The structure system has to be generically referenced in the plan and elevation views on the design drawings and a table must be provided that lists at least three separate manufacturer’s products that are acceptable to use for the project. Additionally, the table must also have “approved alternate” as a fourth option. When the specifications also reference the structural system, they have to be prepared in a similar manner using generic references and providing the list of possible products that can be used.

The manufacturer of the structural system shall be required to provide design computations and shop drawings for the product that are signed and sealed by a professional engineer for review and approval by the LPA or their engineer of record. When the type of product being used for the project has been determined, approved final plans designating the product that was used must be submitted to the MoDOT district contact person for forwarding to MoDOT Bridge Division for inventory purposes. When the structural system is being used for a highway bridge or culvert, load rating calculations in accordance with EPG 136.7.2.2.6.4 Load Ratings shall be provided.

The other type of proprietary product that might be used for structures on a project is some type of specialized product that is only available from one manufacturer or some product where there are not at least three viable producers of the product. These types of situations will require that a public interest finding be approved by MoDOT. For guidance when this type of situation occurs, the engineer of record should consult EPG 136.7.2.8 Proprietary Items.

136.7.2.2.7 Structure Submittal Requirements

Preliminary Design Stage

The majority of structural projects will not require the submittal of any deliverables at the preliminary design stage. The situations that require some type of submittal are shown in the table below. All deliverables should be submitted through the MoDOT District Contact.

Situations Requiring Submittal of Deliverables to MoDOT
Task/Submittal EPG ArticleLPA Responsibility MoDOT
Bridge Division ResponsibilityProcess Timeframe
Design Exceptions for NBI Deficient Items136.7.2.2.3Send letter requesting approval to leave an NBI deficiency in place. The letter must provide the reasoning or justification for leaving the deficiency in place. Review and approval
FHWA approval
3 weeks
Design Exceptions for Structure Posting 136.7.2.2.3Send letter requesting approval to leave a posting in place on a structure. This is only required for structure rehabilitation projects where the existing posting will not be removed with the project.Review and approval2 weeks
Preliminary Design Review136.7.2.2.5.1Send letter/email requesting feedback. This should only happen when there is a specific question related to the preliminary design of the bridge. General review of the preliminary design of a structure will not be done by MoDOT.Review and provide answers to questions2 weeks
Structures on MoDOT Right of Way136.7.2.2.2.5Send in preliminary design for review and approval by MoDOT. This is required for any structure that is partially or fully on MoDOT right of way or for structures that will be crossing over MoDOT right of way.Review and provide any necessary feedback 2 weeks
Replacing a Structure only Eligible for Rehabilitation136.7.2.2.5.2Send in letter with supporting documentation requesting approval to replace a bridge that is only eligible for rehabilitation. Supporting documentation must include comparative cost estimates and justification for replacing the structure.Review and provide response either approving request or limiting federal participation to the rehabilitation cost estimate2 weeks
Replacing Low Water Crossing with NBI Length Bridge 136.7.2.2.5.3Send letter requesting to use HBP funds to replace an existing low water crossing that is not on the NBI. Review and approval2 weeks

Final Design Stage (PS&E)

All federally funded bridge and culvert projects being proposed by an LPA will require the submittal of deliverables at the completion of the final design stage. The table shown below lists the various deliverables that have to be submitted. All deliverables should be submitted through the MoDOT District Contact.

PS&E Deliverables Submittal to MoDOT
Task/Submittal EPG ArticleLPA Responsibility MoDOT
Bridge Division ResponsibilityProcess Timeframe
Signed and Sealed Final Plans Including Title Sheet Signed by LPA Officials136.7.2.2.6.1 Submit when final plans have been completed by the engineer of record indicating that the project is ready to move towards the letting process.Cursory review for general compliance with program requirements.2 weeks
SI&A
(Required for all NBI Length Structures and for Structures Over MoDOT Roadways)
136.7.2.2.6.3Submit completed SI&A along with the final plans for the project.
Signed and Sealed Load Rating Calculations
(Required for NBI Length Highway Structures)
136.7.2.2.6.4 Submit load rating calculations along with the final plans for the project.
Signed and Sealed Specifications and Job Special Provisions136.7.2.2.6.6Submit specifications and job special provisions along with final plans for the project.
Signed and Sealed Cost Estimate for Project136.7.2.2.6.5Send cost estimate along with the final plans for the project.

Acceptance of Prefabricated Structural Systems

For projects using prefabricated structural systems, load rating calculations are typically not available at the final plans submittal stage. Once the contractor has bid the project and selected the structural system to be used, the fabricator of the structural system shall provide load rating calculations for their product to the engineer of record for review and approval prior to the product being delivered to the job site. After reviewing for compliance with program requirements, the engineer of record shall send these load rating calculations to the Structural Services Engineer in Bridge Division at MoDOT.

Required Deliverable Upon Acceptance of Product at Job Site
Task/Submittal EPG ArticleLPA Responsibility MoDOT
Bridge Division ResponsibilityProcess Timeframe
Signed and Sealed Load Rating Calculations
(Required for NBI Length Highway Structures)
136.7.2.2.6.4The engineer of record is responsible for ensuring that load ratings calculations are provided for prefabricated structural systems and are submitted to MoDOT Bridge Division. The supplier of the system has to provide these calculations to the engineer of record for review and approval prior to the product being delivered to the job site.Cursory review for general compliance with program requirements.2 weeks

136.7.2.3 Non-Motorized Facilities

Safe, convenient and well-designed transportation facilities are essential to encourage bicycle and pedestrian use. Careful consideration for the provision of bicycle facilities on every improvement project should occur during planning and design activities, when specific conditions exist:

  • The local jurisdiction has a comprehensive bicycle policy in the area of the proposed improvement.
  • There is public support through local planning organizations for the provision of bicycle facilities.
  • There is public support to fund the total cost of the facility (right of way and construction) plus the provision of future maintenance.
  • The local community supports the incorporation of facilities on a particular project.
  • Bicycle traffic generators are located near the proposed project (ie. residential neighborhoods, employment centers, shopping centers, schools, parks, libraries, etc.).
  • There is evidence of bicycle traffic along the proposed project or the local community supports the incorporation of facilities at this time.
  • The route provides access across a natural or man-made barrier (ie. bridges over rivers, roadways, railroads or under access controlled facilities).

136.7.2.3.1 Non-Motorized Planning and Design

The design and installation of specific facilities is decided as the project scope is developed. The decision to provide or not provide a facility on any project should be documented. Dedicated bicycle facilities will not be provided on interstate roadways or located within their rights of way. However, a bicycle facility may be provided along a non-interstate roadway that crosses interstate right of way if it is grade separated from the interstate travelway and the bicycle facility crossing interstate right of way remains the same as the bicycle facility on each approach to the interstate. For instance, if the bicycle facility is a designated bicycle lane on each approach to the interstate, then it should continue as a designated bicycle lane as it crosses the interstate roadway. Where special bicycle accommodation is not provided, bicyclists will use the travel lane. Therefore, probable use of the travel lane by bicyclists will be considered in determining appropriate construction details such as drain grates and expansion joints. Many times bicycle traffic can be accommodated on a proposed improvement simply through the use of a paved shoulder. If this alternative proves unsatisfactory, several other types of facilities can be selected to address the bicyclist’s need.

136.7.2.3.2 Non-Motorized Standards

Design guidance on bicycle facilities can be found in EPG 641 Bicycle Facilities and in AASHTO publications like the 1999 Guide for the Development of Bicycle Facilities and the DRAFT Guide for the Planning, Design, and Operation of Bicycle Facilities, February 2010. Tables showing the shoulder width needs for bicyclists on various roadway types and speed limits can be found at: www.livablestreetsmissouri.edu in the Missouri Livable Streets Design Guidelines, dated August 2011. Another resource is the FHWA publication Selecting Roadway Design Treatments to Accommodate Bicycles (FHWA-RD-92-073).

136.7.2.4 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

136.7.2.4.1 Introduction

Safe, convenient and well-designed facilities are essential when pedestrians are in proximity to roadway traffic. The design and installation of pedestrian facilities is to be considered on all projects beginning at the planning stage. The LPA, its consultants and its contractors, shall comply with all laws pertaining to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) during the planning, design and construction of facilities within public rights of way. The Americans with Disabilities Act requires that all sidewalks, crosswalks, ramps, curb ramps, and other pedestrian features be planned, designed and constructed to current accessibility standards to the maximum extent feasible. The United States Access Board publishes the Standards and Guidelines that have been adopted by the Department of Justice at www.access-board.gov. On and after March 15, 2012, all newly constructed or altered facilities must comply with all of the requirements that are contained in the September, 15, 2010 edition of the Americans with Disabilities Act Standards for Accessible Design (2010 Standards).

136.7.2.4.2 ADA Standards

Formal Standards for pedestrian facilities within the public right of way are yet to be approved. However, the Public Right of Way Access Guidelines (PROWAG) November 23, 2005 edition has been adopted as a FHWA Best Practice and may be used as a design guide. The PROWAG document is being reviewed and on July 26, 2011 the United States Access Board published a document titled Proposed Accessibility Guidelines for Pedestrian Facilities in the Public Right-of-Way. This document makes various changes to the 2005 PROWAG and is not yet approved as a guideline. Please refer to the MoDOT EPG document ADA Resources for more information on published standards and guidelines on ADA compliance.

MoDOT has developed an ADA Post Inspection Checklist which may be used by a LPA for verifying compliance of facilities built to ADA law. The ADA Post Inspection Checklist Fig 136.9.4 is intended to be a helpful tool for the contractor to use during the construction of the pedestrian facilities and a basis for the acceptance of completed work. Situations may arise where the checklist may not fully address all requirements needed to construct a facility to the full requirements of current ADA law. In those situations, a solution shall be developed that is compliant with current ADA law using the following hierarchy of resources: the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design, Draft Public Rights of Way Accessibility Guidelines (PROWAG), MoDOT’s EPG, or local ordinances. Another possibility is a solution or design that has been specifically approved by the U. S. Access Board. The ADA Certification Fig 136.9.12 must also be filled out and submitted with the PS&E documents.

136.7.2.4.3 ADA Inspection

The LPA shall inspect all work for ADA compliance and the contractor shall complete any necessary adjustments to items deemed non-compliant before making final payment for sidewalk, ramp, curb ramp, median, island, approach work, cross walk striping, APS buttons, pedestrian heads and truncated dome detectible warning systems. It is encouraged that the LPA have its contractor monitor completed sections of the newly constructed pedestrian facilities in an attempt to minimize negative impacts that his equipment, subcontractors or general public may have on completed facilities. Final inspection, approval and acceptance of completed pedestrian facilities will not be made until all other incidental work in the area is completed to the point that future work will not involve moving heavy loads over completed pedestrian facilities. Construction traffic over newly completed sections of pedestrian facilities often adversely affects its ability to meet the stringent tolerances required by ADA.

136.7.2.4.4 ADA Work Zones

The LPA and the contractor are required to provide an accessible signed detour during the various stages and locations of construction when pedestrian facilities are impacted as described MUTCD Part VI. Prior to construction and/or closure on an existing pedestrian path of travel, the contractor or engineer of record shall develop and submit a detailed plan showing the accessible signed pedestrian detour which will be used during each stage of construction. This plan shall be submitted to the engineer for review and approval at or prior to the pre-construction conference. Appropriate detours for pedestrian facilities that are impacted by construction activities shall be in place so there is no reduction of access during the construction process. See EPG 136.7.2.1.4.1 for additional information on traffic management plans.

136.7.2.5 Railroads

The railway company must be contacted if the proposed improvements are on or cross railroad right of way. The LPA must contact the affected railway company directly to obtain approval in order to receive construction authorization from MoDOT. Refer to EPG 643.4 Railroads for information regarding railroad projects.

136.7.2.6 Utilities

136.7.2.6.1 Utility Relocations

Utility relocations and the coordination of those relocations is an important part of most road improvement projects. It is the LPA’s responsibility to inform the utilities of the road improvements and to identify conflicts during the preparation of the design plans.

The LPA is encouraged to review RSMo Sections 227.551 to 227.559 (State Highway Utility Relocation Act). The State Highway Utility Relocation Act defines a procedure for the coordination of utility relocations on State Highways and local roads of any home rule city having a population of sixty thousand or more or charter county. Although some of the provisions within the Act, such as the assessment of fines, are limited as outlined above, the general utility coordination process defined in the Act applies to all road projects that require coordination with utilities. The General Utility Coordination Process is outlined below.

The LPA shall prepare a Utility Status Letter (Fig. 136.9.6) and provide it to MoDOT with the final plans submittal. Projects must be cleared prior to construction obligation and the MoDOT district contact must receive the status letter prior to the bid opening date. See EPG 136.9.2.3 Utility Status for more information on Utility Status.

136.7.2.6.2 Utility General Coordination Process

1. Field Survey

Purpose: To identify the existing utility facilities within a road corridor that is planned to be improved.
Goal: To locate existing facilities based on field markings provided by Missouri One Call (1-800-DIG-RITE) and existing utility facilities maps.
This is an opportunity for the utilities to provide information on facilities that they seek for the LPA to consider during preparation of the conceptual design plans.

2. Verification of Facilities

Purpose: To determine if the utility facilities are shown correctly. The utilities are to review the conceptual design plans to determine if their facilities are properly shown and to provide any additions and/or corrections for any incorrect or missing facilities. Revisions should be drawn to scale or include dimensions.
Goal: To accurately depict the existing utility facilities on the design plans so conflicts with the proposed road improvements can be identified.
This is an opportunity for the utilities and LPA to discuss potential conflicts and possible resolutions to avoid or minimize conflicts. This will require that the utility facilities be accurately located and may require field investigations, such as, potholes or other measures should facility maps not match locates provided by Missouri One Call (1-800-DIG-RITE).

3. Preliminary Plan of Adjustment

Purpose: To determine the utility relocations necessary and to identify right-of-way and other concerns that could impede the project schedule. The utilities are to review the preliminary design plans to confirm that their facilities are properly shown and to provide a plan that details the required relocations. For more information about Preliminary Plan(s) of Adjustment(s), please review the guidelines attached hereto.
Goal: To define the scope of the utility relocation work.
This is another opportunity for the utilities to request for the design plans to be refined to avoid or minimize conflicts; however, the focus of this effort is to define the work required and how it is to be completed.

4. Relocation Plan

Purpose: To define how utility relocations are to be phased and coordinated during construction. The utilities are to review the written comments from the LPA on their preliminary plan of adjustments and to incorporate these comments as they prepare a relocation schedule and finalize their Plan(s) of Adjustment(s). For more information about Relocation Plans, please review the guidelines and form attached hereto.
Goal: To define the schedule and dependant tasks needed to complete the utility work.
The LPA should assemble the Relocation Plans submitted the utilities into a Master Relocation Plan, which should be included with the Final Design Plans submitted for PS&E approval. The purpose of this Master Relocation Plan is to ensure relocations proposed by the utilities do not conflict with each other.

136.7.2.6.3 Utility Relocation Agreements

Actual Cost Agreements are utilized when certain costs are unknown and the actual amount for the adjustment will be reimbursed. Lump Sum Agreements are used when costs are static and can be determined ahead of time. Provisions for the audit should be stated in the agreement between the utility and LPA.

All utility adjustments located on MHTC right of way shall conform to the 7CSR10-3 – Utility and Private Line Location and Relocation. The cost of necessary utility relocations for which the LPA is responsible is eligible for federal participation. If the LPA elects to receive federal participation, utility agreements must conform to 23 CFR Section 645A, which is the applicable Federal Regulation regarding utility relocation on federally funded highways. MoDOT can assist the LPA with information about the above regulation. Any utility costs incurred prior to MoDOT authorization of federal utility funds will not be eligible for federal reimbursement. See EPG 136.3 Federal Aid Basics for more funding information.

Utility relocations that impact MHTC right of way require prior MoDOT approval for the plan(s) of adjustment(s). Each plan of adjustment must be submitted to the district liaison engineer for review and approval prior to final PS&E approval. The utility company will be required to acquire the necessary MoDOT permits prior to any work being performed.

Some work on projects that affect MoDOT right of way may be in the vicinity of MHTC/MoDOT utility facilities, which include but are not limited to traffic signal cable, highway lighting circuits, ITS cable, cathodic protection electric cable, etc. When this is the case, Missouri One-Call (1-800-DIG-RITE) must be contacted in order to establish the location of the facilities.

136.7.2.6.4 Other Resources

Local agencies should consult Program Guide – Utility Adjustments and Accommodations on Federal-Aid Highway Projects, published by FHWA, for assistance regarding utilities within the highway corridor.

136.7.2.7 Design Exceptions

The engineer of record is responsible for determining the appropriate design parameters to use for LPA projects and is encouraged to utilize practical design approaches to provide the most economical project that meets the needs of the LPA. As part of this process, deviations from rules, regulations, or design guidelines may provide for the best engineering solution for the project. Whenever this situation is encountered, the engineer of record shall document these deviations and submit a request for a design exception for review and approval by the appropriate people as indicated below.

Deviations from LPA Requirements

When the deviation from normal practice involves a requirement by the LPA, the engineer of record should submit the design exception to the LPA for their review and approval. Once the LPA has reviewed and approved the design exception by signing it, they should return it to the engineer of record for documentation of the deviation in project file.

Deviations from MoDOT and Federal Requirements

When the deviation from normal practice involves a state or federal requirement, the engineer of record shall submit the design exception to the LPA for their review and approval. Once the LPA has reviewed and approved the design exception by signing it, they should return it to the engineer of record. For projects on MoDOT’s system, the engineer of record shall submit the approved design exception to the MoDOT District Contact for review and approval. After review, approval and signature of the design exception by MoDOT, a copy of the signed design exception form will be returned to the engineer of record by the MoDOT District Contact for the project file. If the project is a federal full oversight project, the design exception will have to be reviewed, approved and signed by FHWA which will be coordinated by MoDOT.

Information Needed for Design Exception Submittal

In order to facilitate the efficient review and approval of design exceptions, the engineer of record needs to provide sufficient information about the item(s) that are deviating from normal requirements. The guidelines shown below should be used when submitting a design exception request.

1. Clearly identify the item (i.e. bridge width, lane widths) that is deviating from normal requirements and the origin of this requirement (i.e. state, federal, LPA)
2. Provide detailed information on why this requirement should be waived and why it is in the best interest of the public.
3. Provide the federal number for the project.
4. Identify the MoDOT district and the county in which the project is located along with the LPA that is sponsoring the project.
5. Identify all of the federal funding sources for the project (i.e. BRO, BRM, STP, etc.)
6. Provide contact information for the engineer of record in case additional discussion is warranted.

136.7.2.8 Proprietary Items

Any patented material, specification, or process that can only be obtained from one manufacturer is known as a proprietary item. These items are generally identified by the use of a trade name. In the interest of promoting competition and allowing for the development of new products, federal funds cannot be used to participate in payment for any proprietary item, except in the following cases:

  • MoDOT certifies the proprietary item is essential for synchronization with existing highway facilities and that no equally suitable alternative exists (requires approved public interest finding from MoDOT).
  • The proprietary item is used for research or for a special type of construction on relatively short sections of road (requires approved public interest finding from MoDOT).
  • Only proprietary items are acceptable, and at least three proprietary items are offered as alternatives (does not require approved public interest finding).
  • FHWA finds the utilization of the proprietary item is in the public interest.

Use of the term “or equal” following the name of a proprietary item does not supersede the need to obtain a public interest finding. The public interest finding requirement is only waived when at least three proprietary product names are listed in the proposal as possible alternatives for a specific item. When this is the case, it is recommended to add the term "or equal" in order to promote maximum competition.

Additionally, the specific characteristics of the proprietary product that is mentioned should be included in the job special provision. Construction personnel can use this information to determine if the substitute product is indeed “or equal”. Examples of specific characteristics are the reflective properties of pavement marking tape, width and length of crashworthy end treatments, signal controller units that are compatible with existing units in the field or other applications in which the district core team can specifically name product characteristics. When requested by a contractor to approve the use of a substitute product based upon the “or equal” provisions contained in the JSP, construction field personnel will coordinate their response to this request with the engineer of record.

For more information on Bridge Proprietary Items see EPG 136.7.2.2.6.8.

For more information on proprietary items also see EPG 136.9.2.6 and EPG 136.9.4.1.2.7.

136.7.2.9 Public Interest Findings

In order to demonstrate that the utilization of a proprietary item is in the public interest, the LPA must submit a letter of public interest finding (PIF) to MoDOT for approval.

To gain approval of a PIF, the letter must include the brand name and manufacturer of the item in question as well as a detailed discussion of the factors that necessitate the item's use (synchronization with existing facilities, no equally suitable alternative is available, substantial cost savings, benefit/cost analysis when more than one proprietary item is available, etc.). This information must be supported by relevant figures and documentation, and will be as complete and detailed as possible. In order to expedite the processing of the request, the bid opening date must be included. A sample letter for submittal to MoDOT is available.

136.7.2.10 Value Engineering

FHWA policy requires a Value Engineering study to be conducted on all projects that meet the following criteria:

1. Projects on the National Highway System (NHS) receiving Federal assistance with an estimated total cost of $50,000,000 or more;
2. Bridge projects on the NHS receiving Federal assistance with an estimated total cost of $40,000,000 or more.

Please note that projects using a Design/Build delivery method are exempt from these requirements.

Additional instances which would require a value engineering study are provided by the FHWA. Specific guidance can be found at FHWA's website. Guidance on the MoDOT’s Value Engineering process is available.

136.7.3 Specifications and Standards

136.7.3.1 Specifications

Standards, as opposed to policies, are actually legally binding parameters of the contract. For highway construction projects, they generally consist of specifications, standard plans, and job special provisions (JSP).

The specifications for a construction contract include the requirements contained in the standard specifications and job special provisions written specifically for a contract. The special provisions provide the technical contract requirements applicable to the specific project construction features as well as legal and administrative requirements peculiar to the project.

136.7.3.1.1 Standard Specifications

The bid proposal must state what standard specifications are in effect. If more than one is referenced, the order of precedence must be stipulated as well.

Missouri Standard Specifications for Highway Construction shall be used for locally sponsored projects on the state highway system and for all projects with bridge construction. The specs comprising Missouri Standard Specifications for Highway Construction are available online. Other standard specifications may be acceptable for use with local federal-aid projects off the state highway system. Should the LPA decided to use standard specifications other than Missouri Standard Specifications for Highway Construction; they must certify that they meet all state and federal laws and regulations. The certification form (Fig 136.9.5) is required to be submitted with the PS&E. The standard specifications shall be signed and sealed by a registered professional engineer. Standard specifications shall not include proprietary items unless they have an approved Public Interest Finding (PIF) See EPG 136.7.2.8 for more information on propriety items.

136.7.3.1.2 Job Special Provisions

Project specific specifications should be included in the bid documents. The LPA or engineer of record may wish to include some technical specifications or project specific specifications in addition to the standard specifications. Additionally, there are some required project specific specifications.

136.7.3.1.2.1 Required Job Special Provisions

136.7.3.1.2.1.1 Traffic Control

If a project contains traffic control, a Traffic Control JSP is required. A sample traffic control plan JSP is available on MoDOT’s website.

136.7.3.1.2.1.2 Contractor-furnished Borrow Specification

If the specifications call for contractor-furnished borrow, the contractor must ensure that all environmental requirements have been satisfied for use of the borrow site and Guidelines for Obtaining Environmental Clearance for Project Specific Locations JSP is required. To eliminate possible delays, the LPA shall specify in the engineering services contract that a proposed borrow site be investigated. The project sponsor must provide written certification to the MoDOT district representative, including clearance letters and other evidence of coordination with the appropriate regulatory agencies, that the proposed land disturbance site has been cleared of environmental concerns under all applicable federal and state laws and regulations.

The Guidelines for Obtaining Environmental Clearance JSP can be found on MoDOT’s website.

136.7.3.1.2.1.3 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

If a project contains any items with ADA components, the ADA JSP is required and can be found at MoDOT's website.

136.7.3.1.2.1.4 Lump Sum Items

If there are lump sum items in the contract, a JSP for each Lump Sum item is required except for items that are covered in the contract specifications. For example, the requirements for mobilization and removal of improvements are included in the Missouri Standard Specifications for Highway Construction.

136.7.3.1.2.1.5 Utility Relocation

If a project contains any utility relocations and/or adjustments, a Utility JSP is required. A sample Utility JSP can be found on MoDOT’s website.

136.7.3.1.2.1.6 ROW Clearance

If right of way is not cleared prior to bid opening, a JSP is required and must explain how this right of way clearance will affect the contractor and when the right of way is expected to be cleared.

136.7.3.1.2.1.7 Railroad

If there is a railroad agreement associated with the project and there are issues that the contractor needs to be aware of a JSP is required. If a railroad flagger is required for the project, a JSP is required and it must indicated who is responsible for funding the flagging operation.

136.7.3.1.2.1.8 Bridge Material Inspection/Acceptance

The LPA has the option as to whether or not they intend to do inspection at a fabrication shop during the manufacture of fabricated bridge elements being supplied for the job. When the LPA decides not to inspect at the fabrication shop, the following specifications regarding acceptance of fabricated structural members shall be included (when appropriate) as job special provisions in the specification documents for the two classes of structural members shown below. The language for these JSPs can be found on MoDOT’s website.

136.7.3.1.2.1.8.1 Acceptance of Precast Concrete Members and Panels

The following procedures have been established for the acceptance of precast concrete girders, slab panels, MSE wall systems, and other structural members. Shop drawings shall be submitted for review and approval to the engineer of record for the local public agency (LPA). The approval is expected to cover only the general design features, and in no case shall this approval be considered to cover errors or omissions in the shop drawings. The LPA or their engineer of record has the option of inspecting the precast units during fabrication or requiring the fabricator to furnish a certification of contract compliance and substantiating test reports. In addition, the reports shown below shall be required.

  • Certified mill test reports, including results of physical tests on the prestressing strands in reinforcing steel, as required.
  • Test reports on concrete cylinder breaks.

The LPA or their engineer of record shall verify and document that the dimensions of the precast units were checked at the jobsite and found to be in compliance with the shop drawings.

136.7.3.1.2.1.8.2 Acceptance of Structural Steel

The following procedures have been established for the acceptance of structural steel. Shop drawings shall be submitted for review and approval to the engineer of record for the local public agency (LPA). The approval is expected to cover only the general design features, and in no case shall this approval be considered to cover errors or omissions in the shop drawings. It is recommended that the contract documents contain provisions that the contractor shall utilize a fabricator that meets the appropriate American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) certification provisions as outlined in Sec 1080.3.1.6. Additional information regarding the AISC certification program can be found on [www.AISC.org the AISC website].

All welding operations, including material and personnel, shall meet the American Welding Society (AWS) specifications. Primary welds shall meet the provisions of Sec 1080.3.3.5.2. The LPA or their engineer of record has the option of inspecting the steel units during fabrication or requiring the fabricator to furnish a certification of contract compliance and substantiating test reports. In addition, the reports shown below shall be required.

  • Certified mill test reports, including results of chemical and physical tests on all structural steel as furnished.
  • Non-destructive testing reports.
  • Verification of the girder camber, sweep, and other blocking data.
  • Verification of coating operations.

The LPA or their engineer of record shall verify and document that the dimensions of the structural steel units were checked at the jobsite and found to be in compliance with the shop drawings.

136.7.3.1.2.1.9 Alternate or Optional Bidding

If a project contains any alternate or optional bidding, a JSP is required. A sample JSP for Alternate Bidding and a sample JSP for Optional Bidding are available on MoDOT’s website.

136.7.3.2 Standard Plans

The bid proposal must state what standard plans are in effect. If more than one is reference, the order of precedence must be stipulated as well. Missouri Standard Plans for Highway Construction shall be used for locally sponsored projects on the state highway system. Bridge construction details included in local standard plans shall meet MoDOT’s bridge design standards. The standard plans comprising the Missouri Standard Plans for Highway Construction are available online.

Other standard plans may be acceptable for use with local federal-aid projects off the state highway system. Should the LPA decided to use standard plans other than those from Missouri Standard Plans for Highway Construction, they must certify that they meet all state and federal laws and regulations. The certification form (Fig 136.9.5) is required to be submitted with the PS&E. The standard plans shall be signed and sealed by a registered professional engineer. Standard plans should not include proprietary items.

136.7.3.3 Hierarchy of Documents

In the case of discrepancy among contract documents, the governing ranking will be:

1. Job Special Provisions
2. Project specific plans
3. Standard Specifications
4. Standard Plans

In any case, the hierarchy of documents shall be prescribed in the Bid Proposal.

136.7.4 Engineer’s Estimate

The engineer of record shall prepare a final cost estimate, engineer’s estimate, for the project prior to bid advertisement. The engineer’s estimate shall include estimated pay item quantities, unit prices, and extended totals for all aspects of the project. Additionally, the engineer’s estimate shall include pay item subtotals for the categories of roadway, bridge, signing/striping/signal, landscaping/streetscaping, bicycle/pedestrian facilities, utilities (if federal participation), and construction engineering (if federal participation). Fig 136.9.11 is an example of an itemized engineer’s estimate. The engineer’s estimate is submitted for MoDOT approval with the PS&E documents as described in EPG 136.9.5 Estimate.

Non-participating work (work that is not eligible for federal participation) shall be identified in the engineer’s estimate. Any non-reimbursable utility work on the project shall be separated from utility work that is eligible for federal participation. The use of lump sum contracting is not allowed, although some lump some items are allowed within the contract (i.e. mobilization, removal of improvements).

Construction engineering (CE) costs should be shown on the engineer’s estimate, if federal reimbursement is desired. Federal participation in construction engineering is generally limited to fifteen percent of the federal participating construction costs. However, the LPA may approve request for reimbursement of construction engineering costs in excess of fifteen percent.

The engineer's estimate shall be treated as a confidential document. Any pre-bid knowledge of the estimate may cause unbalanced bids or provide an advantage to a contractor who has knowledge of the engineer's estimate.

136.7.5 Innovative Contracting

136.7.5.1 Additive Alternates

LPAs may use a bidding procedure called additive alternates to create a competitive bidding environment and maximize the amount of work awarded within budget. The "add alternates" are items of work that will be added to the "base" contract if the base bid plus the add alternate is within the budget referenced in the contract. When add alternates are used, the contract must clearly define the priority of add alternates which will be considered and indicate that the award will be based on the lowest responsible bid for whichever combination of base bid plus add alternates is awarded. The contract defined budget will be the basis for award of add alternates and the LPA will be required to award the project to the lowest responsive, responsible bidder who can provide the most amount of work (base plus add alternates) within the budget.

The award of add alternate sections is based on the budget defined in the contract. The budget for add alternates must be specifically included in the Job Special Provisions (JSPs) for the contract. This provides a transparent bidding process for contractors so they know the basis of award. Typically, the budget is based on the programmed budget for the project which is available to bidders for public viewing.

The determination of add alternate sections is based on the budget. In general add alternates sections should be ten percent of the project budget or a minimum of $50,000. Ideally, the estimated cost for the base section should be slightly below the budget, with no more than two add alternate sections above the budget to allow award of additional work if bids come in significantly lower than the budget. Add alternate sections for paving or sidewalk projects should be setup at logical termini. Add alternate sections for other types of work should include all items necessary to complete the work regardless of the award of other alternates.

The contract completion date, calendar/working days and liquidated damages for contracts that include “add alternates” should be based on the assumption that all “add alternates” are to be awarded. If it is determined the add alternates significantly impact the completion of work then the calendar/working days and liquidated damages for the base work and each add alternate should be defined separately. A sample Additive Alternate JSP can be found on MoDOT’s website.


136.7.5.2 Alternate or Optional Bidding

Alternate or Optional Bidding is a method used to minimize the overall cost of any federal-aid projects through increased competition. By considering alternate design concepts and construction methods, it allows the greatest number of bidders and lowest possible bid prices.

Alternate bidding procedures should be used when more than one design alternate is judged equal or better during the development of the project design. Alternate bidding is most effective when there is more than one method or material that can be considered in the construction of the project and the cost can only be determined by competitively bidding the two alternates. The potential for using alternates is normally determined through design studies and value engineering analysis during project development. Examples of common alternate bid items include: drainage items, bridge structures, sound walls and pavement details.The bidding documents and contract plans should clearly indicate the design criteria and the type of alternate designs or contractor options that will be acceptable. The contract must clearly define how alternates or options are to be bid.

The most common use of alternate bidding is for pavements. Some helpful guidance on alternate and optional pavement design can be found in EPG Other Aspects of Pavement Design. A sample Alternate Pavement JSP can be found on MoDOT’s website.


136.7.5.3 Incentive/Disincentive Provisions

Incentive/Disincentive (I/D) provisions can be used to accelerate the completion of projects. An I/D provision for early completion is defined as a contract provision, which compensates the contractor for each day that identified critical work is completed ahead of schedule and assesses a deduction for each day that completion of the critical work is delayed. A clear distinction should be made between the intent of I/D provisions and the purpose of liquidated damages. This must be clearly written in a JSP. Although they have similar mechanisms, the function of each is different. The primary function of liquidated damages is to recover costs associated with the contractor’s failure to complete the project on time. On the other hand, an I/D provision is intended to motivate the contractor to complete the work on or ahead of schedule without jeopardizing quality of work. The use of I/D provisions is primarily intended for critical projects or milestones where it is essential that traffic inconvenience and delays be held to a minimum. I/D provisions should not be used routinely. The LPA must budget for the maximum incentive possible on the project.

A discussion of factors to consider when selecting and developing I/D projects is available in FHWA’s Contract Administration Core Curriculum (2006).

136.7.6 Public Hearings

Public hearings are forums for receiving citizen comments. They are used to furnish the public with general information and to allow the public to express their opinions relating to the proposed improvements. Information related to the impacts of a proposed action can also be gathered. One or more public hearings or opportunity for hearing(s) are required by the 23 CFR Part 771. The Missouri Highway and Transportation Commission requires location and design public hearings. Public hearings must be held for all projects that meet the following:

1. Require the acquisition of significant additional right of way. Narrow strips of right of way frontage or easements will ordinarily not be considered significant; or
2. Would have a significant adverse effect upon abutting real property; or
3. Would substantially change the geometry or function of connecting roads or streets; or
4. Have a significant social, economic, environmental, or other effect; or
5. Require the construction of a new low water crossing.

Public hearings must be advertised and structured to ensure opportunities for minority, low-income, and disadvantaged populations to participate. Additional effort may be required by the LPA to identify and contact these populations. Minority and disadvantaged populations are those defined by Title VI and Environmental Justice guidance. Low-income populations are those defined by the census category. These efforts, beyond advertisements in newspapers and media announcements, should be documented for inclusion in environmental documents and for department-wide Title VI and environmental justice compliance.

136.7.6.1 Location Public Hearings

A location public hearing is generally held for all projects requiring an EIS (Environmental Impact Statement) and is encouraged for most EAs (Environmental Assessment). Projects with an environmental classification of CE (Categorical Exclusion) may require a location public hearing if conditions are similar to those described for design public hearings. It may be acceptable to hold a combined location and design public hearing for CE projects. It should be noted that FHWA can reclassify CE2 projects as either EA or CE; such reclassification will occur before the time of any expected location public hearing. If a CE2 is reclassified as an EA, a location public hearing may be required after FHWA approves the draft EA. A location public hearing may also be required when a CE2 is classified as a CE.

After the draft environmental documentation is approved by FHWA, MoDOT will notify the LPA that a location public hearing may be held. While tentative arrangements may be made for the location public hearing prior to the document being signed, it is not advisable to firm up the arrangements or advertise for the hearing until AFTER the signature is received. In the case of an EIS project, once the draft EIS is signed a notice of availability (NOA) must be published prior to advertising for the location public hearing. This is done by the EPA once they receive the approved draft EIS in Washington D.C. For a project with an environmental classification of CE, a location public hearing may be held after the conceptual plan is approved.

A location public hearing is held to provide effective participation by interested persons in discussing specific location features, including the social, economic, environmental and other effects of all the reasonable project alternatives. These hearings afford the LPA an opportunity to receive information from local sources that will be of value in choosing a preferred location. The hearings are not intended to determine location by a majority vote of those persons present.

The extent of public involvement needed for projects that may involve Section 4(f) and Section 6(f) lands can vary, depending on the nature of the encroachment. Section 4(f) documents at the programmatic or inapplicability level require minimal public involvement, while projects with greater impact will require more extensive public input. The LPA must coordinate with MoDOT on all projects that involve Section 4(f) and Section 6(f) lands to determine whether a location public hearing is advisable. In all cases, the appropriate agency(ies) must be notified, with the notification issued at the same time as the request for newspaper publication of the notice of public hearing.

When known, the project’s impacts on historic properties must be identified or discussed at public hearings. Documentation of public input or knowledge regarding these impacts is required. Some information, such as the location of archaeological sites, is considered confidential and is not for public release. This protects the site from looting and the landowner from trespassers. Archaeological site locations are not included in displays for public meetings and public hearings or otherwise disclosed to the general public. It is strongly recommended that inquiries regarding archaeological site locations be forwarded to the manager of the environmental study so that this information can be provided to the project cultural resources representative.

The LPA must advise all railroads by sending a notice to the railroads' chief engineers when the improvement is within an urban area or affects railroad yards or industrial properties belonging to the railroad. Preliminary layouts through yards or industrial areas should be discussed with the railroads to ensure their current plans are not in conflict with our layouts.

136.7.6.2 Design Public Hearings

A design public hearing, or opportunity afforded for such hearing, is required for all projects regardless of environmental classification which are on new location, require substantial amounts of new right of way, substantially change the layout or functions of connecting roadways or of the facility being improved, have a substantial adverse impact on abutting property, or otherwise have a substantial social, economic, environmental or other effect, or for which FHWA determines that a public hearing is in the public interest. Substantial amounts of right of way and substantial adverse impact on abutting property as used here is defined as follows: total additional right of way and permanent easements greater than 8 hectares (20 acres) in rural areas or 18,500 square meters (200,000 square feet) in urban areas, or acquisitions from five or more properties. All projects that involve Section 4(f) or Section 6(f) lands should be examined to determine if a design public hearing is advisable. The criteria established in this section should be considered a minimum level for which a public hearing is required. Authority to conduct the design public hearing is given with the MoDOT's approval of the preliminary plans. The approved preliminary plan is to be available for public viewing/display during the 21-day advertisement period.

A hearing should still be considered, even if not "required", if the impact on the traveling public, adjoining property owners and businesses in the area is considered to be significant. A hearing may be desirable to advise local officials, adjacent property owners and other users of the details of the project. A hearing is an opportunity to gain comment from the public concerning the improvement and it allows the LPA an opportunity to outline a proposed solution to an identified transportation need. The desirability, methods of advertising and format for these meetings are left to the discretion of the LPA. A summary of the meeting is submitted to MoDOT.

At design public hearings, the preliminary plans and other exhibits derived from the location study are displayed. Pertinent information about the location alternatives studied and reasons for selecting the proposed location are discussed. Details of the effect of the proposed design on individual properties are discussed. Information about design alternatives studied is made available.

136.7.6.3 Additional Hearings or Meetings

Additional hearings or meetings or opportunities for such hearings or meetings may be scheduled when there has been a substantial change in the proposal, substantial unanticipated development in the area affected by the proposal, an unusually long lapse of time (more than 3 years) between the last location public hearing and location approval or design public hearing and design approval and/or identification of significant social, economic or environmental effects not previously considered at earlier hearings.

136.7.6.4 Advertisement for Public Hearings

Notices concerning public hearings are to be published as a legal notice in a newspaper having general circulation in the vicinity of the proposed project. Additional paid advertisements are encouraged to ensure maximum public input. Additional efforts may be necessary to ensure that minority and disadvantaged populations are aware of the process. Examples of these efforts include house to house contact, bulletins at kiosks, community minority liaison contacts, and notices in newspaper and media outlets, which cater to minority and disadvantaged populations. The notice of public hearing specifies the date, time and place of the hearing and contains a description of the project. If the open-house format is to be utilized, this procedure is explained in the notice. The notice of public hearing specifies that maps, drawings, appropriate environmental documents, other pertinent information developed by the LPA and written views received as a result of the coordination with other agencies or groups, will be available for public inspection. The notice also specifies that this information is available in the appropriate LPA office and at some other convenient location such as a courthouse, city hall or library for public inspection and/or copying. An example of the proper format for the advertising notice is available. The notice of public hearing is to be published a minimum of 21 calendar days prior to the date of the hearing. A copy of the notice is to be sent to MoDOT. The approved preliminary plan is to be available for public viewing/display during the 21-day advertisement period.

In addition to publishing a notice of public hearing, the LPA must submit news releases to the newspaper and electronic media at about the same time as the official notice is to be published and again approximately 5 to 12 calendar days prior to the date of the hearing. The news releases generally contain the same information included in the official notice. If the LPA feels that other methods of advertising a public hearing would help increase public attendance, these options should be explored along with the legal notice and news releases. Options may include direct patron mailings, flyers in public areas, signs erected in the project area or other methods.

136.7.6.5 Advertisement for Opportunity for Public Hearings

If, in the judgment of the LPA, ample evidence of the desire for a public hearing is not apparent, the LPA may advertise the opportunity for a public hearing. In addition to the information required for the notices and news releases described above, the notice of opportunity for a public hearing includes instructions as to how to request a public hearing. All requests must be in writing and should be acknowledged in writing by the LPA.

This notice is published as either a paid advertising notice or a legal notice and submitted as a news release. This notice may be advertised on a website in addition to, but not instead of a newspaper. This notice advises the public of a deadline for the request for a public hearing. This deadline for submission of a request is set 21 calendar days after the publication of the notice. The approved preliminary plan is to be available for public viewing/display during the 21-day advertisement period.

If a request is received, the LPA may contact the individual to discuss their concerns with the project. The person making the request is allowed 14 calendar days to withdraw their request in writing. If a request is made and not withdrawn a public hearing is held.

If no requests are received by the LPA, the LPA must document the opportunity for public hearing notice and certify that no requests were received. This documentation and certification is forwarded to MoDOT.

136.7.6.6 Procedures for Conducting Public Hearings

Public hearings are to be held at a place and time generally convenient for persons affected by the proposed undertaking. When selecting the time and location of the meeting, special consideration should be given to making the setting comfortable for all, including minority and disadvantaged populations. The hearing is conducted by the LPA with possible assistance from MoDOT. The hearing location selected should provide adequate accessibility for physically disabled citizens. Accessibility should also be adequate for minority and low-income populations. Special attention should be paid to access from public transportation, the ability to walk to the meeting, and obstacles such as railroad tracks, crossing busy highways, etc. Two types of procedures may be used to conduct public hearings: the traditional formal speaker-audience format or the open-house format. The selection of format is at the discretion of the LPA and should be based on an analysis of the conditions involved, including consideration of minority and low-income populations. The recommended open-house format tends to be comfortable for a wider variety of people. Where there are language barriers, efforts should be made to ensure all voices are heard and all can understand presentations.

136.7.6.7 Formal Public Hearings

Formal public hearings consist of an opening statement, a period for statements and questions from the public, and a closing statement. Following is a list of actions and statements that should take place at all formal public hearings:

1. The public hearing is to be conducted in a business-like manner, and answers to questions are to be as complete and unbiased as possible.
2. A complete record is made, including names and addresses, for all those in attendance and those speaking.
3. The opening statement includes an explanation of the purpose and need for the project. Information such as accident data, structural deficiencies, capacity problems, and public requests may be cited as justification for the project. Pertinent information about the location alternatives studied as well as major details of the proposed design are discussed. This information should describe the project's consistency with the goals and objectives of the area.
4. The following statement is to be made at all hearings: "This project is being processed in accordance with federal rules and regulations. Plans will be subject to review by FHWA. If federal funds are used in right of way acquisition and/or construction, the percentage of federal funds used will be in accordance with current regulations".
5. The tentative schedule of right of way acquisition and construction is mentioned. It is limited to a statement that as soon as design approval is received, the LPA will proceed with design and right of way acquisition and construction will take place when funds are available.
6. At any hearing on a project, which will require additional right of way to accommodate the proposed facility, the right of way acquisition process must be discussed. The public must be adequately informed regarding relocation assistance procedures. The LPA must describe assistance and benefits available to those that will be displaced by this project. In addition, it is necessary to discuss the number of individuals, families, businesses, etc. that may be relocated by the project under consideration and if studies indicate adequate replacement housing is available. It is also necessary to state that no one will be displaced from their residence unless an appropriate replacement dwelling is available or provided.

136.7.6.8 Formal Location Public Hearings

For formal location public hearings, the following additional actions and statements should take place:

1. The public is advised that the public hearing is being recorded and that the transcript will be studied and submitted to MoDOT.
2. All substantive written views received prior to the location public hearing must be made available to the public as part of the hearing either by display at the hearing, or by reading into the transcript. These letters may be included as part of the environmental document and displayed in that manner.
3. Provision is made for acceptance of written statements and other exhibits in place of or in addition to oral statements at the time of the location public hearing. A statement is made that any additional pertinent information received within ten working days after the hearing will be made a part of the transcript and substantive comments will be addressed in any final environmental documentation.
4. The opening statement also includes a brief explanation of the content and availability of the environmental impact statement (EIS) or environmental assessment (EA). For projects with an environmental classification of CE, a statement is made that the proposed improvement is expected to have no significant impact on the environment and hence is categorically excluded from the need to prepare an EIS. For EA and EIS projects, at least two copies of the approved draft environmental document must be available for public review at the hearing. However, to avoid vandalism and looting, the location of archaeological sites should not be disclosed to the public.
5. Any significant encroachment on flood plains or wetland areas is discussed.
6. Pertinent information about all of the location alternatives studied is discussed and shown on exhibits. All alternatives carried forward in the draft environmental document as reasonable are to be given equal consideration at the hearing in terms of exhibit presentation and design detail. All alternates considered but dropped from further consideration should have pertinent information regarding this decision available for discussion at the hearing. The approved draft environmental document is also made available. If the draft environmental document indicates a preferred alternative, it should be identified as such at this hearing.

136.7.6.9 Formal Design Public Hearings

For formal design public hearings, the following additional actions and statements should take place:

1. The public is advised that the public hearing is being recorded and that the transcript will be studied and submitted to MoDOT.
2. All substantive written views received prior to the design public hearing must be made available to the public as part of the hearing either by display at the hearing, or by reading into the transcript.
3. Provision is made for acceptance of written statements and other exhibits in place of or in addition to oral statements at the time of the location public hearing. A statement is made that any additional pertinent information received within ten working days after the hearing will be made a part of the transcript, and substantive comments will be addressed.
4. Preliminary plans and other exhibits derived from the location study are displayed. It is also recommended that the approved final environmental document is made available for public review at the design hearing.

136.7.6.10 Open House Public Hearings

An open house public hearing has the same requirements as formal public hearings except that some items are included on an informational handout. The advertising is the same, except all notices and letters describe the format being used with emphasis on the optional hours during which interested persons may attend. Alternate methods of submitting comments also are included in the notice. The normal time for an open house public hearing is a weeknight other than a holiday, Monday through Thursday, from 4:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. These hours should accommodate persons wishing to attend during normal working hours and those wishing to attend after normal working hours. The duration of the hearing may be increased as needed if a large turnout is expected.

The site for open house public hearings is separated into areas for greeting, display and recording comments. This may be done with a large, single room or a group of smaller rooms. One or more greeters stationed at the entrance to the hearing room or rooms ask people upon arrival to fill out an attendance card and direct them to exhibit and comment areas. Each person is given a comment sheet and an informational handout. The handout has all information normally included in the opening statement at a formal hearing. In addition, it may include a location sketch, summary of environmental documents or other detail. Return postage may be included on comment sheets for the benefit of persons desiring to submit written comments by mail. Several sets of exhibits should be available in order to provide visitors ample opportunity to see the information. The exhibits of the project should be of sufficient quality and scale such that property owners can clearly identify their property. It is recommended that a wide corridor is shown at the location public hearing instead of showing specific lines and design features as these are subject to change. Additional exhibits showing traffic, accident, environmental, economic or other data may also be displayed. To avoid the potential for vandalism or looting, the location of archaeological sites should not be disclosed. Exhibits of the NEPA process and project schedule may be shown in a simple format. It may also be advisable to invite other agencies, cities, or counties, to be present or set up displays if they have projects going on in the area for which public questions are anticipated. Right of way personnel are stationed in a separate, clearly labeled area to discuss right of way matters. Another area is provided for submitting written comments. Visitors should be reminded that written comments may be submitted up to 10 working days after the hearing.

136.7.6.11 Transcripts

The LPA is responsible for the preparation of an accurate written transcript of the oral proceedings of each public hearing. The oral proceedings may be recorded by a tape recorder, a court recorder or any reliable method that will assure a verbatim transcript. Shorthand notes are not considered adequate. Public comments that are expressed at the hearing but are not recorded should also be noted. Two copies of the transcript must be submitted to MoDOT.

The transcript must contain the following:

1. Executive Summary that describes and discusses issues raised at the hearing or during the open comment period. No recommendations are included in this summary.
2. Project information handout.
3. Double-spaced transcript of any oral hearing proceedings.
4. Color location map(s) showing the alternate locations presented (location public hearing only) or the location of the recommended design (design public hearing only).
5. Data pertinent to statements or exhibits used or filed in connection with the public hearing.
6. Data pertinent to information made available to the public prior to the public hearing.
7. Pertinent correspondence.
8. Copy of all written comments received.
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