Austin, Texas — Austin-based pavement engineering firm The Transtec Group led the pavement design for the Midtown Express project in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area. The firm is also providing maintenance recommendations to the developer.

The $847 million, nearly 28-mile project will increase capacity and reconstruct portions of State Highway 183, State Highway 114, and Loop 12. The project will add TEXpress Lanes and reconstruct portions of the general-purpose lanes and frontage roads. It is designed to improve mobility and air quality.

Transtec assisted the developer in performing an extensive analysis to balance pavement design costs with maintenance costs and to mitigate risks.

“We advanced various innovative pavement design concepts that resulted in significant cost savings to the team,” said Mauricio Ruiz, Director of Engineering at The Transtec Group.

Transtec proposed pavement design-related Alternative Technical Concepts (ATC) that were implemented on this project. The Federal Highway Administration defines ATCs as innovative, cost-effective solutions that are equal to or better than the State’s design and/or construction criteria. Contractors can submit ATCs and the State DOT will select the best-value proposal that meets or even exceeds the proposal requirements. The FHWA says this approach fosters a best-value solution that also increases the value of the project to the public.

Transtec is also providing expert maintenance recommendations with the goal of a longer-lasting pavement requiring less repair in the future.

“Our expertise is providing recommendations to minimize risk during construction and over the next 25 years,” said Ruiz. “We developed an innovative, cost effective strategy that still ensures long-term pavement performance.”

The firm has also provided expertise for a similar project in the area, delivering optimized pavement designs and materials for the DFW Connector. Construction for Midtown Express began in early 2015 and is expected to be completed in summer 2018.