The second Geotechnical Asset Management Peer Exchange (GAMPE) was held at the Renaissance
Hotel in Asheville, North Carolina on May 26, 2022. The peer exchange report is available here.
The 2nd Geotechnical Asset Management Peer Exchange (GAMPE) was held at the Renaissance Hotel in Asheville, North Carolina on May 26, 2022 following the 71st annual Highway Geology Symposium and the TRB midyear committee meeting earlier in the week. These events brought together people interested in the deployment of Geotechnical Asset management (GAM) to improve safety and mobility on the nation’s transportation corridors.
The first GAMPE was held at the headquarters of the College of Engineers and Surveyors of Puerto Rico in San Juan, Puerto Rico on August 27 and 29, 2019, and was organized by the Puerto Rico Highway and Transportation Authority and the Federal Highway Administration. Similar to the first exchange, the focus of the 2022 event was to increase awareness and knowledge of current GAM practices through real-world examples and lessons learned shared and discussed among participants. Discussions also included current trends, future plans, and resource needs for GAM implementation.
The GAMPE event was held from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM, and involved introductory and closing remarks from the organizers, updates from several state transportation agencies regarding ongoing GAM efforts, and a mix of whole-group and breakout discussions. Representatives and spokespersons from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), state transportation agencies, and private engineering firms participated in the discussions.
Alberta Transportation Geotechnical Asset Management (GAM) Framework Development, GAM Planner Application and Pilot Study
Alberta published results from a GAM-focused pilot study.
Tetra Tech Canada Inc. was retained by Alberta Transportation (AT) to assist in the development of a risk-based Geotechnical Asset Management (GAM) framework and pilot study, with the vision of transforming AT’s current Geohazard Risk Management Program (GRMP) into a GAM program. The main objectives of the study were to develop a GAM framework for managing selected geotechnical assets located along the Provincial highway system, and to develop a spreadsheet tool for implementing this framework to a pilot-scale inventory of 27 geotechnical assets. The intent of the GAM framework development was to enhance AT’s ability to effectively prioritize, measure, and manage life-cycle investments in assets such as slopes, embankments, retaining walls and subgrades, based on performance expectations and risk tolerance. The GAM Framework Development and Pilot Study was undertaken in a manner consistent with the methodology and recommendations of NCHRP Report 903: Geotechnical Asset Management for Transportation Agencies (2019), which includes a supporting computational tool implemented in Microsoft Excel, that was customized as part of the project. The tool includes economic analyses based on annual monetized risk and life-cycle costs over a 50-year time period, through monetizing the asset-specific costs and benefits associated with the recommended treatment, applied in the optimal year. A collaborative and highly-interactive approach was essential to the project delivery, with AT’s Geotechnical Asset Management Specialist involved as one of the key team members during all stages of the project. The customized “GAM Planner” application provides an integrated solution for collecting, storing, and managing information on Alberta’s geotechnical highways assets, in one Excel-based application which can be used for capital planning and the prioritization of rehabilitation projects on an annual basis. The GAM Planner was modified from the original NCHRP tool, to reflect AT's agency-specific requirements regarding inventory, treatments, inspection requirements, site-specific user cost model, risk-based life cycle plan, incorporation of monetized risk, site-specific traffic, site-specific detour length, provincial highway classification, field inspection report, and other additional enhancements.
WisDOT publishes the Final Report and Research Brief for Geotechnical Asset Management for Slopes (Project ID 0092-21-06)
The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) engaged with BGC Engineering Inc. (BGC) as part of the Wisconsin Highway Research Project (WHRP) to develop a Geotechnical Asset Management (GAM) process for slopes along Wisconsin highways using susceptibility mapping and analysis. The study corridor used to develop and validate the process was the Wisconsin Highway 35 Corridor in Crawford county in southwest Wisconsin. The process includes a Geographic Information System (GIS) -based slope failure susceptibility model which considers the hazard factors that lead to slope failures on Wisconsin State Highway 35 (WI-35). The output from the susceptibility model can be used within a GAM framework that provides WisDOT engineers and officials with information to prioritize and plan future projects and maintenance efforts. The methodology employed for this work utilized a statistical approach to slope hazard susceptibility mapping which reduces information extracted from geometric and geospatial data at known hazard locations to quantify slope failure susceptibility along the study corridor. The statistcal approach was validated through field observations and anecdotal information from WisDOT Maintenance staff, and guidance for extrapolation statewide is provided. An interactive web-based map showing the slope failure susceptibility and input data such as terrain and field observation forms was used for the duration of the project.
NCHRP Legal Research Digest Potential Liability Associated with Unstable Slope Management Programs Published
TRB has released the 2019 Critical Issues in Transportation, available here. These issues are:
NCHRP Report 903: Geotechnical Asset Management for Transportation Agencies provides an introduction and guidance for state transportation agencies on how to implement risk-based geotechnical asset management into current asset management plans. Volume 2, Implementation Manual assembles the study results into guidance that should be of immediate use to practitioners who maintain geotechnical assets including walls, slopes, embankments and subgrades. Complementary downloadable files include planning worksheet tools and training slides to facilitate agency use.
Geotechnical Asset Management for Transportation Agencies, Volume 1: Research Overview
Geotechnical Asset Management for Transportation Agencies, Volume 2: Implementation Manual
Dialogue with Leaders - Geotechnical Asset Management, Leadership, and Decision‐Making
In preparation for the 2019 TRB Annual Meeting, Dave Stanley, DA Stanley Consulting, has prepared a paper for his invited lectern session: Lectern Session 1327: 14th Dialogue with Leaders in the Design and Construction of Transportation Facilities Monday, 3:45 – 5:30 pm, January 14, 2019.
Paper: Geotechnical Asset Management, Leadership, and Decision‐Making
Notable Report Updates
Dave Petley’s 12 year look at landslide fatalities around the world is below. This is specific to landslide/unstable slopes but a great perspective on the topic of safety and may be of interest to some in the GAM committee.
A GAM update for 190,000 embankment and cut slope assets in UK Network Rail.
State of Alaska has published four final reports on Geotechnical Asset Management. The description and link to the each report is below.
Geotechnical Asset Management Plan
Paul D. Thompson - 30-Jun-2017
This Technical Report provides a detailed analysis of relevant performance objectives and measures; the inventory and current conditions of geotechnical assets; methods to compute and minimize life cycle cost; methods to manage risk; and the Departments financial plan and investment strategies for its geotechnical assets. The report provides the technical background for a continuing process to improve the Departments geotechnical risk management capability.
Download Resource: stp000s-802.pdf - 2560 KB
Risk Based Framework for Geotechnical Asset Management
Mark Vessely - 28-Dec-2017
This report presents the outcome from a multi-year research study to incorporate a risk management framework for the Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities Geotechnical Asset Management (GAM) Plan.
Download Resource: stp000s-802c.pdf - 1364 KB
Tongass Corridor - Geotechnical Asset Management Research
Darren Beckstrand, C.P.G.; Aine Mines, P.G.; Kenji Yamasaki, P.E.; Collin McCormick, E.I.T. - 31-Aug-2017
This report documents and presents the results of a study developing a Corridor Health Index that incorporates managed pavement and bridge assets as well as geotechnical assets. Geotechnical assets included rock slopes, unstable soil slopes, and retaining walls. Assessment of these assets adhered to the procedures developed and tested here and in the concurrent statewide Geotechnical Asset Management (GAM) program. The research utilized existing pavement and bridge ratings. Culvert ratings followed a simple observation-based evaluation of culvert function.
Download Resource: stp4000-126b.pdf - 61576 KB
Final Report for Rock Slopes, Unstable Soil Slopes and Embankments, Retaining Walls, Material Sites
Darren L. Beckstrand, C.E.G.; Barry A. Benko, C.P.G.; Aine E. Mines, P.E.; Lawrence A. Pierson, C.E.G.; Paul D. Thompson; Robert E. Kimmerling, P.E. - 05-Sep-2017
The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (AKDOT&PF) has developed the nations first Geotechnical Asset Management Program. The program encompasses rock slopes, unstable slopes and embankments, retaining walls, and material sources along the States highway system. Like bridges and pavements, geotechnical assets are subject to deterioration and when not actively managed, maintained, and mitigated; high life cycle costs, reduced mobility, and life-safety risks are the unfortunate result. This proactive program has inventoried and assessed the condition of 1,636 slopes on the National Highway System (NHS) and select portions of the Alaska Highway System (AHS), or about 45% of AKDOT&PFs road miles. Assessments of over 400 retaining walls on portions of the NHS and AHS, or about 17% of AKDOT&PFs inventory, are in the program. Geographic scarcity of quality aggregate materials is assessed on a Maintenance Station basis. All assets are evaluated within a consistent rubric of five condition states and classified in terms of Good, Fair, or Poor condition. Life cycle cost estimation and investment analysis, using first-of-its-kind condition-based programmatic cost estimation, deterioration rates and maintenance costs permit the Department to make informed decisions, all in terms of hazard, risk, and cost as stewards of the Public trust.
Download Resource: stp4000-126a.pdf - 28486 KB