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Transportation Research Partnership Celebrates Three Years of Innovation

JEFFERSON CITY, MO — In recognition of National Engineers Week, the Missouri Center for Transportation Innovation (MCTI) is marking three years of innovative transportation research. MCTI is a partnership with the four University of Missouri campuses, the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT), the Federal Highway Administration, and more to research, embrace, and develop new and groundbreaking transportation technologies. To date, MCTI has secured federal transportation research funding totaling more than $11 million for 57 projects.

“MCTI is a great source of pride at the University of Missouri System. Our outstanding faculty from all four universities are collaborating on important projects to improve transportation safety, construction technologies, and sustainable management of critical infrastructure,” said University of Missouri President Dr. Mun Choi. “I thank the commissioners, leaders, and outstanding engineers at MoDOT for their leadership and support.”

Projects from this partnership include the real-world testing of recycled plastics in asphalt on a four-mile stretch of Stadium Boulevard in Columbia. Studies suggest inclusion of plastic can add years to the life of pavement and reduce the yearly risk of potholes and ruts, among other potential benefits. Another project aimed to design a concrete bridge barrier reinforced with glass-fiber-reinforced polymer materials. Physical testing of this design is underway.

“It’s exciting to see this partnership produce practical applied research to save money, and more importantly save lives,” said Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission Chairman Robert Brinkmann. “In the past three years, MCTI has run farther and faster than we could have imagined working on practical, timely research focusing on innovation for the future of our transportation system.”

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