Work Zone Mobility and Safety Program

Guide to Project Coordination for Minimizing Work Zone Mobility Impacts


As the information presented throughout this report has shown, road Project Coordination (PC) can involve various strategies and actions, with the intent to reduce the safety and mobility impacts relative to what would have occurred if the projects had not been coordinated. Three key questions define the opportunities for successful PC:

  • Who should be involved?
  • When can or should it occur?
  • What does it accomplish?

PC by a single agency where multiple projects are ongoing along a particular route or parallel routes under the agency’s control, is the starting point for many agencies. Establishing methods of collecting and analyzing the effects of expected project tasks upon safety and mobility is critical to PC efforts. Databases, traffic impact analysis and optimization models, and project location visualization tools can all assist an agency in identifying coordination needs and determining suitable coordination actions to mitigate the travel impacts of the projects. Examples of possible actions include (but are not limited to):

  • Sequencing the order in which multiple projects are completed to incrementally build additional capacity into the travel corridor or network, so that each completed project provides the greatest amount of benefit to travelers during each successive project.
  • Combining projects or project tasks along a travel route segment so that the impact to traffic occurs for the collective tasks at one time instead of individual impacts for each activity.
  • Scheduling projects or project tasks to avoid having significant capacity restrictions on a single travel route or on multiple roadways that serve as convenient alternatives for travelers when they encounter work zone congestion and delays.

Once an agency has developed experiences with coordinating projects within its own jurisdiction and determined which business processes are most effective in resolving project conflicts with minimal contractual challenges and disruptions to project schedules, the next step is to take a regional perspective of PC. PC across multiple agencies is inherently more complex and challenging, given the number of agencies and companies that may be involved, their different missions and charters regarding transportation safety and mobility, separate funding sources and timelines, etc. However, the same types of tools and business processes that are effective in coordinating projects within a single agency can be molded to address multi-agency PC objectives as well. The complexity of databases, visualization tools, and analytical models to identify potential project conflicts and coordination needs may need to be higher, as may the determination and agreement upon the business processes that will be followed when coordination actions are required. However, the product of such efforts can be substantial reductions in work zone safety and mobility impacts, reduced traveler frustration, and increased project work productivity. A five-step approach towards developing a PC process has been documented in this report, and consists of the following:

  • Establishing a PC vision for the corridor or system.
  • Developing the details as to how PC will occur.
  • Educating and informing personnel and stakeholders about the PC process.
  • Implementing the PC process.
  • Refining the process as needed.

Additional project coordination resources are available online. These are shown in the Appendix.

Previous | Next
Office of Operations