Roadway Safety Innovation

Innovation in the roadway safety industry

Outsiders of the transportation infrastructure industry may look to autonomous vehicles as an icon of innovation on the roadways, but for state Department of Transportation (DOT) officials, manufacturers, suppliers, and contractors in the roadway safety and infrastructure industry, innovation is not a stationary achievement. It is much more than a mile marker and not as easily defined.

With different perspectives and priorities, industry stakeholders are finding that in addition to new technologies, innovation is heavily reliant on communication between entities. Industry leaders are working together to move forward and ATSSA is no different. The association works year-round to progress and develop creative solutions for all of its initiatives including highlighting innovative products and technologies, training, and ATSSA membership.

One innovative effort ATSSA is involved in is a joint initiative with the Transportation Research Board (TRB) Standing Committee on Traffic Control Devices (AHB50). Both ATSSA and TRB sponsor and conduct an exciting design competition, the Traffic Control Device (TCD) Student Challenge, to promote innovation and stimulate ideas in the traffic control devices area with a goal to improve operations and safety.

Find recent updates on the latest innovations in the resource list below and be sure to check back for updates.

Exhibit at ATSSA's Annual Traffic Expo


Do you have an innovative roadway safety product? Exhibitors can showcase their innovations in the New Products Rollout at the Annual Convention & Traffic Expo. Products released after Jan. 1 of this year qualify for entry. Twenty will be accepted for the New Product Listing and just 12 will be accepted for presentation to a panel of judges. The top three products will earn an Innovation Award that will be announced during the Convention.

Learn more
about featuring your innovative product to key industry professionals. View videos of last year's entries and award winners.


Erica Terrini
/ Categories: Innovation

Get your innovative products to market

State Transportation Innovation Councils - STIC
A STIC brings public and private transportation stakeholders together to evaluate innovations and spearhead deployment in their state. This puts each state’s transportation community in the driver’s seat when it comes to selecting innovations that best fit their program needs and then putting those innovations into practice quickly. STICs (or an equivalent task force) are active in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Federal Lands Highway, creating a national network for exchanging best practices on innovations and getting them into widespread use across the country.

To get involved in your state’s STIC program please visit -

Every Day Counts Initiative - EDC
Through the EDC model, FHWA works with state and local transportation agencies and industry stakeholders to identify a new collection of innovations to champion every two years. Innovations are selected collaboratively by stakeholders, taking into consideration market readiness, impacts, benefits and ease of adoption of the innovation. After selecting the EDC technologies for deployment, transportation leaders from across the country gather at regional summits to discuss the innovations and share best practices. These summits begin the process for states, local public agencies and Federal Lands Highway Divisions to focus on the innovations that make the most sense for their unique program needs, establish performance goals and commit to finding opportunities to get those innovations into practice over the next two years.

Throughout the two-year deployment cycle, specifications, best practices, lessons learned and relevant data are shared among stakeholders through case studies, webinars and demonstration projects. The result is rapid technology transfer and accelerated deployment of innovation across the nation.

For more information on the Every Day Counts initiative please visit -

Innovations Deserving Exploratory Analysis - IDEA
IDEA programs fund research into promising but unproven innovations for highways, transportation safety, and transit. The annual Program Announcement provides information about the programs and includes instructions for preparing and submitting proposals and Proposal Submission Forms. Annual progress reports that describe current and completed projects are published for each program. A project of the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP), the NCHRP Highway IDEA program seeks proposals with potential to advance the construction, safety, maintenance, and management of highway systems. The program is sponsored by the member states of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials.

For more information on this program please visit -

AASHTO Product Evaluation List - APEL
APEL is a repository consisting of findings from the evaluation and testing of new, innovative, and/or proprietary engineered transportation products and materials. The three types of information contained within the site are as follows: AASHTO (American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials) Evaluated Products, State Evaluated Products, and State Proprietary Products. It is important to note that APEL is NOT an approved products list, rather it is a source for independent, unbiased data and information from which state product coordinators may determine to use new, innovative products in conformance with the Code of Federal Regulations

For more information on this repository please visit -

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