Sustainable Highway Evaluation
As part of an ongoing effort to enhance its sustainable transportation practices, the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) was the first DOT in the United States to implement the Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA's) Infrastructure Voluntary Evaluation Sustainability Tool (INVEST).
On behalf of MnDOT, a consultant team from HDR reviewed more than 200 reports and internal documents and interviewed MnDOT staff to identify overall organizational progress in meeting INVEST criteria. The team also studied how sustainability was used in project delivery by evaluating six completed MnDOT projects that covered a wide range of types, including lane conversion/reduction, concrete overlay and bridge repair, conversion from two highway lanes to four, construction of a roundabout and pavement preservation/reclamation. INVEST supported MnDOT's Sustainability Flagship Initiative by providing the agency with:
- An objective, outside review to assess its policies and practices in three broad areas: system planning, transportation system management/O&M and project development
- Increased opportunity for collaboration between staff in the Central and District offices on how to better integrate sustainability
- Establishment of a benchmark against which future progress can be measured
- Practical, implementable recommendations to enhance MnDOT programs/practices and to assist in prioritizing next steps