Dr. Baabak Ashuri wins 2013 AASHTO High Value Research “Sweet Sixteen” Award

Dr. Baabak Ashuri was recently awarded a 2013 AASHTO High Value Research “Sweet Sixteen” Award for his research project for the Georgia Department of Transportation: “Recommended Guide for Next Generation of Transportation Design-Build Procurement and Contracting in Georgia”. 

The Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT), in partnership with Georgia Tech, developed a Design-Build (DB) guidebook to improve the efficiency of DB contracting in highway construction. A DB selection tool was developed to evaluate the appropriateness of DB for transportation projects. This tool helps GDOT to: 
(1) Determine suitability of DB for projects. 
(2) Assess whether project risks can be managed if DB is selected for a project. 
(3) Evaluate authorized procurement methods and selecting the most appropriate method. 
(4) Implement DB transparently and consistently. 

A post-research workshop was held to facilitate adoption of DB contracting in Georgia. Effective July 1, 2012, Georgia legislators raised the cap for DB by 50 percent (in dollars), based on the total amount of construction projects awarded in the previous fiscal year. This was made possible, in part, by solid DB project suitability assessments that this research enhanced for future use.

The Research Advisory Committee (RAC) for the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Standing Committee on Research (SCOR) awarded its 2013 Sweet Sixteen High Value Research Projects at its annual summer meeting held in July in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Each year, RAC collects High Value Research highlights from member states across the nation. These highlights showcase projects that are providing transportation excellence through research. From these submittals, each of the four RAC regions selects its top four projects to form the Sweet Sixteen Awards. Continually challenged to deliver more efficient transportation systems, State DOTs are committed to utilizing research and innovation to meet these challenges. All aspects of transportation, from planning and design to construction and maintenance, benefit from the power of research. The “Sweet 16” projects are just a sampling of the many pioneering works from across the nation. 

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