Chad Moffett is today’s guest blogger. Chad has served as project manager for the UDOT Historic Bridge Survey and is one of more than a dozen professionals at Mead & Hunt who specialize in delivering Section 106 compliance for transportation projects. Chad has worked on similar bridge surveys in Wisconsin, New York, Indiana, Nebraska and California. “Hats off to UDOT! This fun project survey was possible by seeking a sustainable solution, which will benefit Utah for years to come.”
Efforts by the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) to streamline future project development were recognized by the Federal Highway Administration’s Center for Environmental Excellence in its June 2012 Successes in Stewardship newsletter.
It was time for a change. Prior to 2011, the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) had evaluated whether bridges qualified for listing in the National Register of Historic Places on a project-by-project basis. UDOT identified an opportunity to comply with historic preservation regulations while saving time and money – by completing a statewide historic bridge survey. With the assistance of Mead & Hunt, UDOT conducted evaluations of all its pre-World War II and post-WWII historic bridges to determine their eligibility for listing in the National Register. This step lays the groundwork for a streamlined and programmatic project development process.
UDOT’s goal is in sight. The department is now working with the Utah State Historic Preservation Office, Federal Highway Administration, and Advisory Council on Historic Preservation to develop a Programmatic Agreement to allow it to use the results of the survey for compliance with historic preservation regulations on future construction projects. Once the Programmatic Agreement is in place, UDOT and the State Historic Preservation Office will no longer need to conduct individual evaluations for bridges, which will streamline agency review and save time and money.
The results of the historic bridge survey are posted on UDOT’s web site LINK.