On 15 May 2014, CPATT (Centre for Pavement and Transportation Technology) and Norman W. McLeod Chair invited me as their speaker.
I spoke at the University of Waterloo, Davis Centre on “Understanding Road Network Needs through Performance Measurement and Monitoring“. I talked in a broad sense covering not only performance-based contracts but also performance monitoring and management and in relation to pavement management systems.
The presentation was based on the Performance Measurement and Monitoring material that I and colleagues Dr. Seosamh Costello and Prof. Susan Tighe prepared.
During the beginning of the presentation I have provided the audience with the context of New Zealand, the make-up of the road network and how the funding mechanism works. The differences between Northern American roads and roads in New Zealand are highlighted too.
New Zealand roads mostly consist of thin chips seals constructed on natural granular materials, which are significantly moisture sensitive. Therefore we have to look after what we have very carefully and fix them before these roads reach failure condition and become more expensive to repair.
In the video, I enumerated the core messages needed in Performance Measurement and Monitoring, which are:
- Data organisation and confidence is a key for successful performance monitoring;
- Link performance to the agency objectives and goals;
- Measures have to be able to tell an effective story
Watch the part where I defined “Performance Monitoring” and “Level of Service” which, I believe the public perceives well if presented in terms of percentages and money. Using a graphic, I also pointed out the trigger level or the performance intervention level, which is the point when one makes a decision to intervene.
In the video, you will see me discussing the following topics:
- Monitoring Pavement Health
- Network Segmentation
- Using CUSUM for Section Identification
- Proposed Confidence Level Framework
- Linking to Objective or Strategic Goals
I emphasized in the lecture that whenever one has goals or a mission statement one must make sure he or she has got measures that sufficiently describe performance in relation to the goals and objectives. I added that the moment you start measuring and reporting things people start taking notice of it.
Don’t miss watching the other section of my presentation, which includes:
- Adopting a Tiered Approach
- Using Stats Appropriately
- Interpretation of Data
As illustration for “Trend Monitoring”, I presented the performance monitoring case we had with the New Zealand Transportation Agency (NZTA) where they were able to see the shifting trend after we brought in the entire distribution into the box whisker chart.
I advise that in reporting ages of surfaces, one must not settle on the current surface age of the network but use the recognized statistical survival probability because that gives indication of the surfaces you’ve viewed in the past that has now resurfaced as well as the surfaces that’s still alive.
In this video, I share further learning through comparing two networks, Waikato and Manukau City. I explained about performance measurement factors such as: surface condition trend, structural indices, rutting, vehicle operating cost, and pavement failure risk.
Towards the end of my presentation, I gave the possible items that may be included in the “Findings/Recommendations” explaining each item and its importance to the overall report.
Watch me providing further insights in the question and answer portion of the lecture. The participants presented some practical situations which I’m sure you would find valuable.
This is one video that infrastructure asset management practitioners should not miss watching if they’re serious about understanding and meeting road network needs.