Shaw extols virtues of UPlan on AASHTO web video

A new concept in highway planning and design, based on geographic information systems (GIS), is revolutionizing the way states approach new projects. Pioneered by the Utah Department of Transportation and adapted for use in Idaho, the process is generating national interest.

Bill Shaw, a planner and public involvement coordinator in District 6, explains the advantages of UPlan and Idaho’s version, IPlan, this month on a national web video. The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) features Shaw in a four-minute segment on News in Design.

The video made its debut March 29 on the AASHTO website.

The AASHTO Technology Implementation Group (TIG) is promoting UPlan and IPlan to other state transportation departments. More than a dozen have adopted a form of the planning tool, and by the end of the year as many as 30 could be working in the UPlan environment, Shaw said.

“I’ve not seen a better tool …” he said. . “We believe this is our future."

The tool applies mapping technology generated from a variety of sources into a single tool with real-time information for real-time decisions and creates plans that are “actionable.” It’s revolutionary, Shaw said.

Better searches for specific data, the ability to share content, and a mechanism to display planning scenarios to identify and track performance measures are among the tangible benefits of the Idaho and Utah plans.

Published 4-12-13