2015 Highway Data Conference, Best Practices for Data Collection

The 2015 Highway Data Conference (HiDaC), co-sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration and the Texas Department of Transportation, was hosted in Austin, Texas, on November 4 - 6, 2015. The event provided an opportunity for those with an interest in collecting, maintaining, and reporting highway data to share personal experiences, perspectives, best practices, and innovations within the field. The primary focus of conference was the Highway Performance Monitoring System (HPMS) that all states are required to submit data on each year. 

Kick Off, Perspectives

In the first session, both Wisconsin and Kentucky Departments of Transportation (DOTs) provided perspectives on work flow regarding yearly HPMS submittals.  Session two focused on collection processes, and a discussion led by the HPMS Coordinator from Idaho regarding how Esri® Collector has improved their data collection process. Afternoon sessions consisted of Kansas representatives discussing a vendor-neutral approach; Hawaii liaisons addressing how to leverage spatial intelligence to help generate their HPMS data items; and Texas staff explaining new enterprise data management application.

Keeping Momentum, Expectations

The second day of the conference began with a California Department of Transportation presentation on whether expectations among highway data maintainers within DOTs are met. Vendor presentations on tools that help with data collection and HPMS, were followed by a session on data validation and an open source data conflation engine.

Finishing Strong, Analysis

On the final morning of the conference, both Kentucky and Oklahoma DOTs spoke about visualization and analysis of data. Kentucky discussed how analyzing data is used to help the highway project selection process. Oklahoma then provided an overview of the latest web-based solutions. The conference wrapped up with an open discussion that allowed attendees to discuss topics that were covered throughout the duration of the conference, and to share ideas regarding the future of highway data collection.

The conference had a successful turnout consisting  largely of state DOTs, personnel from the FHWA, vendors and other transportation specialists. HiDaC provided a great opportunity to learn how different states develop innovative solutions to collect and report important highway data each year.