Development of an Implementation Manual for Geotechnical Asset Management for Transportation Agencies

In the past decade considerable advancement has been made in Transportation Asset Management (TAM) to allow agencies to focus strategically on the long-term management of government-owned assets. Minimal guidance is available for developing TAM plans, but more detailed guidelines will soon be available for plan development. In the past few years, the application of asset management principles to geotechnical assets has followed the general TAM development pattern and has been tried by a few state departments of transportation and other agencies. However the results to date are mixed, with considerable differences in approaches and results. Early efforts have often focused on inventory and condition surveys, without continuing along the full TAM spectrum. As a result, the benefits of asset management have not been realized for geotechnical assets so far. Recent efforts such as those by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Central Federal Lands Highway Division, Colorado Department of Transportation, and the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities to develop asset management plans for geotechnical assets have increased the awareness of the valuable contributions possible by geotechnical asset management (GAM). Various management practices that fall within the scope of GAM are also implemented in many other states, including Washington, Oregon, and Nevada. In fact, a recent informal survey of states found at least 38 are practicing or starting some type of geotechnical asset management (inventory, assessment, and/or programming decision making) though many didn't realize it as such. The federal surface transportation bill, Moving Ahead with Progress for the 21st Century (MAP-21), specifies risk- and performance-based asset management for bridges and pavement and encourages state transportation agencies to develop and implement transportation asset management strategies for all assets within the right-of-way. It is time to move beyond the initial steps of GAM and focus on the development and incorporation of geotechnical assets into the transportation asset management arena. The primary objectives of this research are as follows: (1) To define what geotechnical assets are and to provide a taxonomy of geotechnical assets; (2) To identify performance expectations, targets, and means of measurement; (3) To identify how to incorporate risk analysis principles and processes into asset management for geotechnical assets; and (4) To develop a manual for creating and implementing geotechnical asset management plans. This research provides an opportunity for a national coordination effort that can lead to consistent application of geotechnical asset management. Without the research, there is potential of a fragmented implementation approach that will vary from agency to agency. Similar to existing pavement and bridge management systems, a coordinated research effort is key to developing a system that can be used by many agencies and also can be used to efficiently recognize the benefits of more complete asset management throughout the country.


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Funding: $500000.00
  • Contract Numbers:


  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590

    American Association of State Highway & Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW, Suite 225
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001
  • Project Managers:

    Reynaud, David

  • Start Date: 20150805
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0
  • Source Data: RiP Project 40228

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01572341
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: 24-46
  • Files: TRB, RiP
  • Created Date: Aug 6 2015 1:00AM