Minnesota Department of Transportation Summary Results From A Survey of State Linear Referencing Practices April 11, 2008

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Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

1
-

Minnesota Department of Transportation

Summary Results

From A
Survey of State Linear Referencing Practices


April

11,
2008



Background


The Minnesota Department of Transportation (Mn/DOT) Office of Transportation Data
and Analysis (TDA) desired to learn m
ore about how other

transportation agencies are
managing linear referencing systems and maintaining data on the locations and physical
characteristics associated with
transportation networks.
In September 2007, a

brief
survey was forwarded to states and C
anadian provinces using the ListServ

for the
AASHTO RAC Committee.
1

A total of 18 responses were received from the following
states and Canadian provinces:




Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department



Connecticut Department of Transportation



Idaho Tran
sportation

Department



Iowa Department of Transportation



Kentucky Transportation Cabinet



Maine Department of Transportation



Manitoba Infrastructure and Transportation Highway Planning and Design Branch



Mississippi Department of Transportation



Missouri Depar
tment of Transportation



New Hampshire Department of Transportation



Oregon Department of Transportation



Pennsylvania Department of Transportation



South Dakota Department of Transportation



Texas Department of Transportation



Virginia Department of Transportat
ion



Washington Department of Transportation



West Virginia Department of Transportation



Wisconsin Department of Transportation


The
following provides a brief summary of survey results. Questions and requests for
additional information may be directed to:


Matthew Koukol, Director

Data Systems and Coordination Section

Minnesota Department of Transportation

(651) 366
-
3859

matthew.koukol@dot.state.mn.us




1

A copy of the survey that was sent can be found in the appendix to this report.




Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

2
-

General Observations


All
transportation agencies
that responded to the survey have developed information
systems to
maintain and track information on the roadway locations and characteristics
.
However, survey results clearly indicate that one size does not fit all and there is no one
standard template f
or managing linear data within agencies.


Virtually all of these information systems are designed to support multiple
reporting,
planning, project
,

and asset management business needs and decisions.

The most
common business needs and decisions reference
d in the surveys included:




Federal HPMS reporting



State reporting and performance measurement



Transportation planning



Safety analysis



Traffic data



Project management



Roadway inventory characteristics



Sign inventory


Survey results indicate that most of t
he responding transportation agencies currently have
or
aspire t
o have some level of integration among
their traditional crash, traffic, bridge,
pavement and roadway inventory data systems.


Newer systems under development are moving beyond the integration

of traditional
management system data to provide
more
interoperability with other key maintenance,
right of way, freight, performance measurement and asset management data systems.


Results additionally indicated that newer linear referencing and roadway
network
information systems track highway mileage for both state and local systems
,

interface
with GIS mapping capabilities
,

support web warehousing capabilities
,

and provide access
and data editing rights to multiple internal agency users and external par
tners.


Survey results also reflect the growing
costs to develop and maintain these more
sophisticated information systems.



Information System Characteristics


The survey included several questions about the specific ages, costs, and operating
character
istics of the information systems in use for tracking highway locations and
characteristics.


Figure 1 illustrates the years linear referencing systems have been in operation for
responding states. While nearly 25% of the responding states have new syst
ems under
development, another 25% have information systems that have been in operation for 10
or more years.

Of the 5 respondents that have systems in operation for 10 or more years,



Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

3
-

0
1
2
3
4
5
6
In Development
Less than 2
2-9
10+
Years
Response Count
3 are in the process of initiating projects to replace their current sy
stem. Therefore, 8 of
18 respondents are either currently developing or beginning development of new linear
referencing systems.

Fi
gure 1

Years Linear Referencing System is in Operation

(
Based on
Survey Responses from
Responding
Participants
)


It is clear that developing linear referencing systems takes a long term agency commitment.
Figure 2 shows how the number of years it took to bring linear referencing s
ystems into
production for the 18 transportation agencies that responded to the survey.



Figure 2

Years to Bring LRS into Production

(
Based on Survey Responses f
rom Responding
Participants
)











0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
Under 1
1 to 2
3 to 5
5+
Response Count



Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

4
-

In th
e past, large integrated data and information systems relied on “mainframe”
computer technologies.
Current systems provide data access and reporting functionality
via desktop and web
-
based platforms.
Figure 3 illustrates

this trend based on the
responses

received from
survey

participants
.


Figure 3

Methods for Delivering
Information

(
Based on Survey Responses from Responding
Participants
)





0
2
4
6
8
10
12
Mainframe
Desktop
Web Based
Response Count
The ways transportation manage and share information
have also changed over the
years as technology evolved to permit more data access options.


Survey results infer that states are more broadly sharing data viewing and data
editing responsibilities within their agencies and with external local and regiona
l
government partners.
This trend makes sense as linear referencing and roadway
information systems expand to cover both state and local systems. Sharing data
access, maintenance
,

and editing responsibilities with the local partners who own
and operate t
he roadways can increase efficiencies and greatly improve data
quality, reliability and timeliness.


Figure 4 illustrates how responding states
share permissions with

external partners
to
access
t
he linear refere
ncing and roadway data systems. Editor we
re also
assumed to have read privileges.




Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

5
-

Figure 4

Linear Referencing Systems

External Access Capabilities

(Based on
Survey
Responses from Responding
Pa
rticipants
)

0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
None
Read
Edit
Response Count
The survey illustrates that newer linear referencing systems and roadway data systems have
evolved to meet more complex and integrated decision making needs. However, the survey
also shows that there is no standa
rd template for how transportation agencies have moved
forward in meeting their spatial data and information needs.


A few of the responding agencies indicated that they have found it cost effective to build their
own custom linear referencing and informat
ion management systems.


Others chose to purchase off the shelf
linear referencing
solutions (EXOR or ESRI) and then
integrate those with more custom data warehousing applications. In fact, in several cases the
investments made in linear referencing capab
ilities were much smaller than those made in
data management system and data warehousing applications.


Costs to develop and maintain linear referencing solutions varied widely across surveyed
states. Initial implementation costs ranged from $300,000 to $
7.3 million, with an average of
nearly $2 million. Annual maintenance fees varied from $16,000 to $300,000, with an
average of roughly $100,000. Cost data is based on small sample sizes. Only nine
participants reported either number, and only five provi
ded both implementation and
maintenance figures.




Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

6
-

Brief Synopsis of Individual State Survey Responses


Arkansas


The Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department is i
n the process of developin
g a
new custom linear referencing system that will integrate data from the roadway inventory
syst
em, functional classification database, pavement management system and their
applications for preparing FHWA Highway Performance Management System reports.
The
system will include all functionally classified roads
.
It will be available on desktop,
using
Access® software on a SQL operating system
.
Development is expected to take 3
years
.


Contact: Greg Nation

greg.nation@arkansashighways.com


Connecticut


The Connecticut Department of Transportation

has developed an of
f the shelf
linear
referencing system
, using Arc GIS®, Arc Info® and Oracle Network Analyst®
. The
system includes data on all
roadway miles in the state. It
provides internal
and
external
data
access and editing

capabilities. The new

system

integrates all trad
itional data
management systems. No decision support tools have been developed as yet, but are
planned. The system o
perates currently on desktop. In the future, it will be web based.

A
nticipated final development c
ost to full
y incorporate the newer
data

model
is
$750,000

with expected
maintenance

costs of approximately
$25,000
-
$30,000 per year.


Contact: James Spencer

James.Spencer@po.state.ct.us


Idaho


The Idaho Transport
ation Department has a c
ustom mainframe system build in the 1970’s
that operates in Windows on a SQL server
. The state is in the process of
migrating to a
new platform
. The current system includes
all public road miles
. A
ccess
to data
is
provided to bot
h internal
and
external customers
, with
internal editing

capabilities. T
he
system includes all traditional management systems, plus right of way and access
management enterprise systems.

The Idaho DOT is
exploring the integration of pavement
man
a
gement, m
aintenance management
,

and GIS into a single data warehouse.


Contact: Randolph C. “Randy” Rowell

Randy.Rowell@itd.idaho.gov





Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

7
-

Iowa


The Iowa Department of Transportation is addressing their linear refere
ncing and
highway data needs with a c
ombination commercial and custom built application
that
us
es

GeoMedia and Oracle
. The
system is available for distribution
. It includes
information on all current roadways in the state and provides data on the histori
cal
network. The system grants

access and editing capabilities to
both
internal and external
users.

In addition, it

supports all traditional
planning and reporting data needs and
integrates all management systems
. T
he system operates on desktop with fut
ure plans for
web based access.

Iowa’s linear referencing system was built between 1999
-
2006, at a
cost of approximately
$5.5 million
. An
nual system maintenance is approximately
$128,000
.


Contact: Peggi Knight

peggi.knight@dot.iowa.gov


Kentucky


The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet manages their linear referencing system with an
o
ff the shelf application from E
XOR® that includes some customization. The system
upgrades an existing system that operating w
ithin the department. It s
upports planning,
roadway inventory, asset management (signs, pavements and bridges), traffic, and GIS
.
The system i
ncludes data on all public roads
. Roadway
characteristics are attached to
centerlines, with editing
capabilitie
s for b
oth internal

users and
external partners
.
The
system delivers data via desktop and web
. It took s
ix months to
complete the system
upgrade and
put
the new system
in production
. Annual maintenance costs are $95,000.


Contact: Keith Dotson

keith.dotson@ky.gov


Maine


The Maine Department of Transportation

purchased an
o
ff the shelf
linear referencing
system
application from EXOR
®

that feeds a
larger internal
data warehouse
. The d
ata
warehouse was built fi
rst and then synchronization routines
were developed to integrate
bridge, crash, traffic, maintenance, pavement and project management systems.

The
system includes all public road mileage and tracks history on the network. No external
access

is available

yet
. The linear referencing system
took 14 months to develop and cost
$300,000; with annual maintenance of $16,000
.


Contact: Nancy Armentrout

nancy.armentrout@maine.gov







Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

8
-

Manitoba Infrastructure and T
ransportation Department


The Manitoba Infrastructure and Transportation Department
recently initiated a project to
internally build a cus
tom

linear referencing
application
. The application
is currently in
the testing phase
. The s
ystem includes all roads

and history to 2000
. It p
rovides access
to both internal

and
external users
. Only internal users are able to edit the system. All
linear referencing and highway attribute data

are available through a data warehouse
.
The linear referencing application
i
ntegrates with all traditional management systems,
plus contract management and advanced
truck
routing and permitting systems
.


Contact: Glenda Gartner

glenda.gartner@gov.mb.ca


Minnesota Department of Tra
nsportation


The Minnesota Department of Transportation maintains information on all
public roads
in the state in two systems, a GIS BaseMap and a mainframe roadway data application
called the Transportation Information System (TIS). The TIS data integrat
es roadway
inventory, crash and safety data, and pavement data. It also interfaces with bridge data
and serves as the system of record for mileage in Minnesota. The BaseMap data is
calibrated to match the TIS data and allows mapping of events and charact
eristics on all
public roads. Mn/DOT undertook a major effort to replace both these systems with an
integrated linear management system, but the software was abandoned following the pilot
phase. The department is in the initial phase of a new replacement

project.



Contact: Matt Koukol


Matt.koukol@dot.state.mn.us


Mi
ssouri Department of Transportation


The Missouri Department of Transportation

linear referencing system (LRS)
is an
ESRI
®

application with

some custom development

to integrate linear network data with
an integrated data management system. The LRS
includes data on all roads and can be
accessed by both internal
and

external users
. The LRS links with a large
Oracle®
data
management system tha
t i
ntegrates traditional
traffic, crash, pavement and bridge
management system

data wi
th data on bill boards and right of way
. A
ll data are designed
to also be used for performance measurement
. M
anagement system
d
evelopment

and
data
integration costs

wer
e reported to be
$30 million
, with annual system maintenance
costs of $2 million. Linear referencing system development cost approximately
$2
million

with annual maintenance costs of $300,000.


Contact: Brian Reagan

brian.reagan@modot.mo.gov








Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

9
-

Mississippi Department of Transportation


The Mississippi Department of Transportation is in
the process of developing a
request
for proposals (
RFP
) for a new linear referencing system. The
new system will be
desi
gned to integrate bridge, crash, pavement, signs and traffic management systems
.


Contact: James Watkins

jwatkins@mdot.state.ms.us


New Hampshire


The New Hampshire Department of Transportation’s linear re
ferencing system is
an off
-
the
-
shelf ESRI
®

application
.
The system includes data on all state and local roads
. It

provides access and editing rights to both internal and external users
. The system

supports integration with all management systems, includ
ing the
department’s “
Asset
Management System


that has 10 distinct data owners
. The linear referencing system
cost
$300,000 to put in place
,

with annual maintenance fees of approximately $38,000
.


Contact: Glenn Davison

GDavison@dot.state.nh.us


New Jersey


The New Jersey Department of the Transportation uses o
ff the shelf ESRI
® and Oracle®
applications to manage their linear referencing and network location needs. The system
p
rovides connectively to
the
department’s other data
management system databases via
the network
. The linear referencing system is d
esigned to support all planning and project
management activities.

I
t integrates traditional
traffic, crash, bridge and pavement
management system data
,

with
future plans to bringing in
drainage, freight management
and right of way data
. The system includes

all public roads
. It

does not provide external
access or editing rights
. Linear referencing system development represented a t
wo
-
year
effort
. Deve
lop
ment costs are unknown
. Maintenance is
$67,000

per
year
.


Contact: Mark Gulbinsky

m
ark.gulbinsky@dot.state.nj.us



Oregon


The Oregon Department of Transportation
is in the process of p
urchasing a

custom off
the shelf
linear referencing system that will be designed to r
eplace
their
current
highway
inventory and HPMS
reporting
systems
.
The
new linear referencing system
will include
state roads first
;

locals second and
will eventually
track history

of the network.

Access
to both old and new systems will be provided t
hrough a data warehousing feature
.

The
n
ew system will provide
enhanced
editing, integration and data access capabilities
.




Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

10
-

The new

system required legislative approval
. It is schedu
led for completion by
July
2009 at a cost of $2.25 million,
not including
costs associated with
data population
.


Contact: Heather I. King

heather.l.king@odot.state.or.us


Pennsylvania


The Pennsylva
nia Department of Transportation’s linear referencing system is part of a
custom mainframe IMS management system that is over twenty years old. The system
includes roads under state jurisdiction. The system integrates data traditional
management system d
ata from crash, traffic, pavement and bridge. The survey indcates
that the system has worked well over the years, but is in need of upgrade.


Contact: J. Michael Long

johlong@state.pa.us


South Dakota


The Sout
h Dakota Department of Transportation

survey response indicates the
department has had a statewide linear referencing system since the 1970’s. It is defined
not by a “management system” but by a relatively concise policy that governs highway
numbering, po
sting of reference markers, and referencing of data elements relative to the
reference markers
.
Reference markers are set at half
-
mile intervals and have latitude,
longitude and state plane coordinates
.
The policy is incorporated into every road
-
related
management system used by the department.


Contact: Dave Huft

Dave.Huft@state.sd.us


Texas


The Texas Department of Transportation manages roadway locations and attributes with
a c
ommercial off the shelf ESR
I
®

syst
em that has been in use for approximately 10
years. The s
ystem includes state and local
roadway mileage
and provides historical
information on roadway
geometry
and attribute characteristics. The system
includes
roadway inventory, traffic
analysis

and asset management data
. It

integrates all
traditional
bridge, crash, pavement, sign, and project management

systems for planning
and project management
. The system has
15 editors and thousands of users
.


Contact:
Judy Skeen

JSKEEN@dot.state.tx.us








Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

11
-

Virginia


The Virginia Department of Transportation is in the middle of a major project to replace
their highway traffic records and mainframe inventory systems. The new system will
include custom built int
erfaces, using ESRI
®

mapping and linear referencing tools, as
well as straight line diagram features borrowed from the Vermont Department of
Transportation. The new system will integrate all traditional safety, crash, pavement,
bridge, traffic management

systems and provide data on all roads. It will be accessible to
internal and external users and provide editing rights to both. Route centerlines and 911
addressing will be available and are compiled and distributed by VGIN (enterprise)
services. The n
ew linear referencing system took 4 years to develop at a cost of $7.3
million.


Contact:
Joseph W. Pugh, Jr.

Joe.pugh@VDOT.Virginia.gov

Paul.Bucher

Pau
l.Bucher@VD.Virginia.gov



Washington


The Washington Department of Transportation currently uses mainframe technology
developed in the mid
-
1980’s to store and report linear referencing related activities. The
GIS representations of roadways are stored o
utside the mainframe system. Manual
processes have been developed to link
mainframe
linear referencing data to the GIS. The
mainframe system serves crash, maintenance, pavement, traffic, signs, accounting data
needs. In addition, it is integrated with p
roject management decision support tools
through data warehouse. The system provides data on state routes and serves internal
users. Washington is in the process of looking at alternative solutions to better meet ever
changing business needs.


Contacts:

Mark Finch

finchm@wsdot.wa.gov

Ron Cihon

cihonr@wsdot.wa.gov



West Virginia


The West Virginia Department of Transportation has a new off the shelf ESRI® system
under

development. Some customization will be done to import and integrate data. The
new system
will include all state and local roadway mileage and it will track network
history. The system will integrate all the traditional data management systems (traffic
,
crash, pavement, and bridge. It will interface with maintenance work orders, sign
inventory data and project management information.






Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

12
-

The system will provide access to internal and external users through web based tools.
Project champions for the new

system came from safety and project management
functional areas. System development costs are approximately $1,000,000 with $200,000
for annual maintenance.



Contact: Sean Litteral

slitteral@dot.state.
wv.us


Wisconsin


The Wisconsin Department of Transportation
survey response indicates
that t
wo separate
linear referencing systems
have been developed
to manage roadway locations on the
state
and local road systems
. Both systems are custom
ESRI
®
, Oracle
® and
Java
®

systems
that
provide audit trails for tracking all data changes and updates
.


-

The state linear referencing system has been in place for 15 years. It integrates
traffic, pavement and crash data with information on bridge locations. The
syste
m supports internal user access and provides annual download reports via the
web. The survey indicates that the AML is being phased out so Wisconsin will
have to rewrite system applications in the near future.


-

The local road linear referencing system h
as been in place five years. All
roadway line work is edited internally. Roadway attributes and characteristics are
edited by both internal and external users and partners. The system includes
pavement, traffic and bridge locations. A pilot project is
underway to address
crash data.


Wisconsin also has a
pilot study is underway to look at combining the state and local
linear referencing systems.


Contact: Joseph Nestler

joseph.nestler@dot.state.wi
.us

Mike Krueger

michael.krueger@dot.state.wi.us


Conclusion


The survey on linear referencing practices, conducted through the AASHTO RAC
process, produced a wealth of information to assist the Minn
esota Department of
Transportation in moving forward with its plan to replace its older mainframe
application.
Mn/DOT apologizes for any errors or misinterpretations of individual state
responses.
If a participant feels we have misrepresented their infor
mation in a significant
manner, please inform us and we will amend the survey summary.


Mn/DOT thanks all the individuals who took time to respond to the survey.
The
information provided is much appreciated.




Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

13
-




Appendix:
Linear Referencing System Mana
gement Survey

1

State Agency Name

2

Responder Name

General Information

3

Is your agency currently using (or soon to implement) a software package to manage your linear
referencing system and transportation network?

4

If so, is it a comercial off
-
the
-
s
helf product or custom built?

5

If it is a commercial off
-
the
-
shelf product:


a

What is the name and producer of the product?


b

Was customization required to fit your business needs?

6

If it is custom built:


a

What is the vendor's name?


b

Is the p
roduct open source?

7

What primary business needs or decisions was your system designed to support:


a

Planning


b

Project management


c

Safety planning and crash analysis


d

Roadway inventory


e

Traffic analysis


f

Asset management


g

Other

8

Whi
ch of the following items does your system support?


a

Data on all state and local road miles


b

Historical roadway network (geometry and attributes)


c

Audit tracking


d

Long transaction management


e

Access by both internal and external partners


f

Editing by both internal and external partners

9

What management systems are or will be integrated with the LRS management system?


a

Bridge


b

Crash


c

Maintenance/Work Orders


d

Pavement


e

Project management


f

Sign Inventory


g

Traffic volume


h

Other _____________________________


i

Other _____________________________


j

Other _____________________________

10

Is the system integrated with decision support tools (financial or federal reporting, project
development or scheduling, performance

measures, dashboards, etc)?

11

What is the estimated number of data editors?

12

What is the estimated number of end users?

Platform

13

What operating system is the software running on?

14

What database does the software access?




Minnesota Department of Transportation

April 2008

-

14
-

15

How is the system
delivered to data editors (web base, desktop, other)?

16

How is the system delivered to end users (web base, desktop, other)?

Resources Required

17

How long did it take to get the system into production?

18

How difficult was it to achieve management su
pport for your project?

19

What functional areas were lead champtions for the project?

20

How long have you been using the system?

21

What was the estimated cost to put the system into production (development, data loading,
and implementation)?

22

What

is the yearly maintenance cost?

Satisfaction

23

How satisfied are you with your software package?

24

What areas of the software are you most satisfied with?

25

What areas of the software are you least satisfied with?

Other

26

Comments

27

Would you
would be willing to be contacted as a follow up to this survey?

28

If you would you like the results of this survey sent to you, provide your prefered e
-
mail
address.