Keeping track of the 50,000-plus bridges in Texas can be a challenge, especially since there currently is not a complete, updated record of their exact locations and features. To help rectify that, the Texas Department of Transportation’s (TxDOT) Fort Worth District turned to civil engineering Professor Nur Yazdani to develop a database and mobile app that will catalog their GPS coordinates and features.
“At the moment, crews are typically expected to go to a bridge site and collect all of the necessary information every time they need to work on it,” Dr. Yazdani says. “That information may not be saved for future reference, so the process is not efficient in terms of personnel and cost.”
He and his team will fill in the gaps in TxDOT’s incomplete Geospatial Roadway Inventory Database and ensure that all its information is accurate and comprehensive. For some bridges, they will go to the location and get the coordinates; for others, they will use Google Earth, ArcGIS, and similar resources to map locations.