ASPIRE is a quarterly magazine published by PCI in cooperation with the associations of the National Concrete Bridge Council. The editorial content focuses on the latest technology and key issues in the Concrete Bridge Industry.
Issue link: http://www.aspiremagazinebyengineers.com/i/306162
12 | ASPIRE, Winter 2011 -40 0 40 80 120 160 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 Annual Fund 80 Allocation, $ million Year Structurally Deficient Bridges Bridges added during the year Bridges deleted during the year No. of Structurally Deficient Bridges 100 110 120 130 140 150 50 60 70 80 90 100 110 120 130 2002 2004 2006 2008 2010 2012 2014 2016 No. of Structurally Deficient Bridges Annual Fund 80 Allocation, $ million Year Funding Allocation and No. of Structurally Deficient Bridges Projected P E R S P E C T I V E Ask any elected or state official if bridge preservation is important, and they'll agree that it absolutely is. No one wants to face the ultimate disaster of a bridge collapse due to lack of preservation. But when the time comes to allocate funds, the array of competing "important" programs often expands beyond the state's available resources, leaving bridge repairs and replacements underfunded. To ensure that bridge projects receive the money they deserve—and that they can hang onto it as budgets tighten during the year—engineers need to be confident that fund allocators understand the impact the money will have on citizens' lives. In Maryland, we meet this need with a series of data-based performance measures with illustrative charts that show that funding added to the department's budget will directly impact the number of structurally deficient bridges that we operate. This effort has proven successful, securing even more data points that help show the cause-and-effect relationship that makes a compelling case. As a result of this effort and more focus by state officials in general on bridge rehabilitation, funding for bridge projects in the state has risen significantly, from $53 million in 2004 to $89.3 million in 2010. The total is expected to continue to rise, reaching a projected $124.4 million in 2012. Over the same period, the number of bridges maintained by the State Highway Administration that are "structurally deficient" has dropped from 148 in 2004 to 107 in 2010. Showing the Relationship T h e i n t e n s i v e d a t a - t r a c k i n g a n d presentation process began in earnest 5 years ago, as we focused more attention on the relationship between the level of funding received and the condition of bridges. The critical element is proving that money spent on projects has a payoff. We focus on that point specifically in our presentation. Intuitively, this cause- and-effect relationship makes sense, but showing quantitative data makes it stand out from other highway programs competing for funds. The program solidified in 2006 thanks to the direction of Governor Martin O'Malley, the former mayor of Baltimore. As mayor, O'Malley instituted a reporting mechanism for department performance, called CityStat. When he moved into the governor's mansion, he expanded the concept to all of Maryland. The StateStat data gathering process encouraged us to compile as much information as necessary to explain the department's performance accomplishments and goals. by Robert Healy, Maryland State Highway Administration The key chart in Maryland's presentation for funding allocations uses performance data produced for StateStat showing funding allocations each year compared to the number of structurally deficient bridges. The chart visually demonstrates the value that added funding can provide. This chart shows the number of structurally deficient bridges on the State Highway Administration system per year, along with the amount of increase or decrease compared to the amount of yearly funding. Using Data-based bridge performance Measures Creating DetaileD perForManCe MeasUres that show the iMpaCt oF briDge FUnDing Can sway state aDMinistrators anD eleCteD oFFiCials Book_Win11.indb 12 1/4/11 2:34 PM