JEO Project Wins Two Industry Awards

JEO was recently presented with two awards for our Intersection Performance Evaluation project at the junction of US-81 and N-91 in Platte County, Nebraska. From the American Council of Engineering Companies, Nebraska Chapter, we won an Engineering Excellence Award, recognizing innovative and impactful engineering projects. We were also presented with an award from the American Planning Association, Nebraska Chapter. This award acknowledges a notable achievement in a community or region in accomplishing positive change as a result of planning. 

U.S. Highway 81 (US-81) is part of Nebraska’s expressway system. Prior to 2020, its intersection with Nebraska Highway 91 (N-91) in Platte County, Nebraska, experienced multiple serious and fatal crashes. 

This made the intersection the ideal location for the construction of the Nebraska Department of Transportation’s (NDOT) first reduced-conflict intersection (RCI). NDOT’s objective in implementing the RCI was to reduce the frequency and severity of crashes, improve mobility for the traveling public, and improve reliability on Nebraska’s highway system. The RCI was opened to traffic in November 2020. 

NDOT’s broad goal was to implement additional RCIs across Nebraska, but it first needed to evaluate this intersection to determine if it was satisfying expectations. 

In May 2021, NDOT contracted with JEO Consulting Group to perform an operational and safety performance evaluation of the intersection. JEO took a multi-disciplinary approach to the project. The Traffic & Technology team took the lead, analyzing pre- and post-RCI implementation crash data and reaching out to four peer departments of transportation (DOTs) to glean insights from their RCI implementation experiences. JEO’s study team conducted an operational performance evaluation and independent review of the design and gathered community feedback to understand public opinion on use of the RCI. 

JEO suggested a few minor design modifications to future RCIs, but no significant issues were identified. NDOT was pleased with the study’s findings and now has the information necessary to incorporate RCIs into the future of Nebraska’s infrastructure.