GIS for Transportation: Principles, Data and Applications

7.5 Next Week's Webinar



Next week, our guest speaker will be Mr. Jeremy Freeland. Jeremy is a Transportation Planning Manager in the Transportation Planning Division of PennDOT’s Bureau of Planning and Research. He is responsible for coordinating and overseeing all of PennDOT’s traffic collection efforts, both manual and automated. He is also responsible for assembling PennDOT’s annual Highway Performance Monitoring System (HPMS) submittal to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). Jeremy has been with PennDOT for 13 years. He earned a geography degree from Shippensburg University in 2003.

Highway Performance Monitoring System (HPMS)

FHWA is responsible for collecting sufficient highway characteristics and performance data in order to support their own needs as well as those of the USDOT and Congress. HPMS is a national information system which was created to fulfill this need. Initially developed in 1978 as a replacement of biennial roadway condition studies which began in 1965, one of the primary purposes of HPMS is still to provide Congress with a biennial assessment of U.S. roads for use in estimating future highway investment needs. Here is a link to the 2013 Status of the Nation's Highways, Bridges, and Transit: Conditions & Performance. HPMS is also used for a multitude of other purposes, not the least of which is apportioning federal-aid highway monies to the states.

The specific data collection and reporting requirements state DOTs need to comply with are defined in the HPMS Field Manual. FHWA also provides software to submit, validate, and analyze state HPMS data. This software is web-based and is only available to authorized users (typically those staff at a state DOT with responsibilities for reporting HPMS data). The guide for the latest version of this software (i.e., version 8.0) is provided here.

Traffic Data

One of the most important types of data collected for HPMS is traffic data. Of the 70 or so HPMS data elements states are required to report, about a dozen are traffic elements. FHWA’s 2016 Traffic Monitoring Guide is a document designed to help states put together a traffic monitoring program.

Assignment 7-6 (10 points)

Read Chapter 1 and Section 5.3 of the HPMS Field Manual. Submit an M.S. Word document to Assignment 7-6 in Canvas which addresses the following items:

  1. What three data elements are used to divide federal-aid funds between states? (1 point)
  2. What is the difference between “Full Extent” data items, “Sample Panel” data items, and “Summary” data items? (2 points)
  3. Are states required to report any geospatial data as a part of HPMS? If so, what are states required to report? (2 points)
  4. What is a “traffic monitoring section”? (1 point)
  5. The field guide refers to a “3-year count cycle” and a “6-year count cycle.” What is a “count cycle”? (2 points)
  6. Define AADT, VMT, ATR and AVC (not just the words the letters stand for, but what they mean in your words). (2 points)

Assignment 7-7 (5 points)

After reviewing the background material for next week’s webinar and the biography for next week’s speaker, come up with 3-5 questions which are clearly stated and are relevant to the webinar topics. Submit the questions to Assignment 7-7 in Canvas.

Webinar Questions Rubric (5 points)
Criteria Ratings Points
Question Quality
Excellent: Questions were clearly worded, demonstrated a thorough review of the background material and thoughtful reflection and insight on the part of the student.
5.0 pts
Satisfactory: Questions were somewhat clear, demonstrated some review of the background material and some reflection and insight on the part of the student.
3.0 pts
Poor: Questions were unclear and/or demonstrated little or no review of the background material and/or demonstrated little or no reflection and insight on the part of the student.
1.0 pts
5.0 pts
Total Points: 5.0