Illinois Tollway Funds $1.3 Million ICT Life Cycle Assessment Project

6/26/2013 10:37:00 AM

Yeh Center
Yeh Center
The Illinois Tollway announced last Friday that it will partner with the Illinois Center for Transportation (ICT) to develop life cycle assessment (LCA) tools to measure the environmental impact of roadway construction. The Tollway Board of Directors approved a $1.3 million, three-year agreement with ICT for this project.

The LCA tools will assess every stage in the lifespan of a roadway or bridge, from the use of materials to construction to maintenance and repairs to disposal or recycling. The assessments gather energy and material use data, which will assist in tracking, monitoring, and evaluating environmental impact. ICT researchers will develop models for tire-rolling resistance on pavements and its impact on fuel usage and emission. Throughout the life cycle of any roadway section, the Tollway will be able to evaluate the environmental impact of any roadway section. These tools will provide the Tollway a more complete data set, which will lead to more informed, environmentally responsible decisions.

“The Tollway is committed to making environmental responsibility and sustainability part of everything we do—from planning to implementation to maintenance,” said Illinois Tollway Executive Director Kristi Lafleur. “We are excited that these innovative new tools will not only help us better integrate sustainable practices into our construction projects, but they will also allow us to evaluate their effectiveness during construction and beyond.”

Imad Al-Qadi, ICT director and Founder Professor of Engineering in the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, will serve as principal investigator for the project. Other research team members from the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department include:

Jeremy Guest, Assistant Professor

Yanfeng Ouyang, Associate Professor and Paul F. Kent Endowed Faculty Scholar

• Hasan Ozer, Research Assistant Professor

Jeffery Roesler, Professor and Illinois-American Concrete & Pavement Association Faculty Scholar

Arthur Schmidt, Research Assistant Professor

About the Illinois Tollway

The Illinois Tollway is a user-fee system that receives no state or federal funds for maintenance and operations. The agency maintains and operates 286 miles of interstate tollways in 12 counties in Northern Illinois, including the Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88), the Veterans Memorial Tollway (I-355), the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) and the Tri-State Tollway (I-94/I-294/I-80).

About ICT

Established in 2005, The Illinois Center for Transportation is headquartered in the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and located at the Advanced Transportation Research and Engineering Laboratory (ATREL), one of the top transportation research facilities in the nation. Located on 47 acres of the former Chanute Air Force Base in Rantoul, Illinois, the ATREL complex has 67,000 square feet of laboratories dedicated to transportation research and houses a full-scale pavement testing facility capable of evaluating multiple transportation support systems under real environmental and vehicular loading conditions. ICT conducts sponsored research for the FHWA, Illinois DOT, Illinois Tollway, EPA, and several other government agencies and industry partners.