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2003 Meeting Highlights

December Meeting Summary

The December luncheon meeting was held on December 9, 2003 at the office of Belt Collins in Honolulu. The featured speakers were Danielle Conway-Jones, Associate Professor of Law at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, and Jessica Horiuchi, attorney for Altson Hunt Floyd & Ing. Ms. Conway-Jones began her presentation regarding Act 52, new legislation pertaining to procurement, by outlining the major points of the legislation. Act 52 calls for the institution of pre-bid conferences so that all bidders are working with the same information, a debriefing mechanism that would inform bidders why they were or were not selected, and negotiative procurement to obtain best and final offers, and the creation of a neutral institute to review, critique, and analyze procurement initiatives. Then Ms. Horiuchi elaborated on the details of sealed bid procurement and the importance of pre-bid conferences. Ms. Conway-Jones then discussed negotiative procurement where applicants can discuss the details of a project with the State so that the scope of work is clear to the applicants and the State can determine if the applicants have sufficient means to complete the project. These proceedings would lead to firm fixed price contracting which would reduce change orders and other factors that can lead to escalating costs. In addition, for projects where the State is not sure what the scope of work should be, these discussions with applicants can help the State to determine exactly what it needs. Ms. Conway-Jones also discussed source selection and how to ensure that the selection process is not influenced by political or other outside sources, as well as, issue of debarment and suspension which is intended to protect the State from procuring applicants that do not have sufficient experience or expertise for a project, or have been previously convicted for a crime.

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November Meeting Summary

The November luncheon meeting was held on November 18, 2003 at the University of Hawaii at Manoa in Honolulu. The featured speaker was Lin Zhang, PhD candidate at the University of Hawaii and recent ITE Student Paper Award winner. Mr. Zhang began his presentation by defining travel time and explaining how it could be useful for congestion management systems and advanced traveler information system. Travel time data can be gathered utilizing a number of different methods including test vehicle, probe vehicle, license plate matching, cell phone tracking, automatic vehicle identification, GPS, vehicle signature matching, and platoon matching. Data collected by any of these methods could then be analyzed utilizing a number of methods which include the use of the revised BPR formula, historic profile, regression models, time series analysis, and neural networks to produce travel time estimation models. The performance of these models could then be measured based upon either their root mean squared error, mean absolute error, or mean absolute percentage error. Mr. Zhang then presented his case study involving an approximately 8 mile stretch of the westbound direction of the H-1 Freeway between 6th Avenue and the Pali Highway off-ramp. For this study, he collected travel times utilizing test vehicles, traffic volumes, and vehicular speeds. The collected data was analyzed each of the various modeling methods and the resulting models were then compared based upon the various performance measures. Based upon these results, Mr. Zhang concluded that travel times can be predicted well for short freeway sections and the model with the best performance was a simple exponential decay model.

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October Meeting Summary

The October luncheon meeting was held on October 23, 2003 at the office of Belt Collins in Honolulu. The featured speakers were Ken Schmidt and Mark Lierman from the City and County of Honolulu’s Department of Planning and Permitting (DPP). Mr. Schmidt, coordinator for the City’s GIS system, began his presentation by explaining that the City’s GIS system is called HoLIS or the Honolulu Land Information System. The system currently contains information such as land use, streams, roadways, utilities, and districts. Some of this information is available to the general public through the DPP’s website, but most of the information in their system is intended for use by City agencies. Currently, they are working on integrating information about current construction projects, including project status, from the various City agencies, including the Board of Water Supply, into their system. Their three main goals for the future are to create a comprehensive data source, improve their services by streamlining information retrieval and eliminating redundancies, and generate benefits such as providing readily available information to aid in decision making. Mr. Schmidt then turned the meeting over to Mr. Lierman who described some to the other GIS systems on the mainland that they are looking at for features that could be incorporated the City’s system.

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September Meeting Summary

The September luncheon meeting was held on September 17, 2003 at the office of Belt Collins in Honolulu. President Cathy Leong announced that at the recent ITE Annual Meeting in Seattle, the Hawaii Section was awarded the Best Web Site Award and University of Hawaii Ph.D. candidate Lin Zhang was awarded the Best Student Paper Award.

Wayne Kawano, OMPO representative, reported that the Transportation Improvement Plan is now available on the internet atwww.oahumpo.org and that the speaker at the latest Citizen’s Advisory Committee (CAC) meeting was DOT Director Rod Haraga who spoke about the Nimitz Contra-Flow Program.

The featured speaker was Dr. Leon James from the Department of Psychology at the University of Hawaii. Dr. James spoke about driver psychology and aggressive driving behaviors. He stated that over the years, the number of accidents have not increased, but this is due to better equipment and facilities rather than better driver behavior. As equipment and facilities become safer, drivers have a greater sense of safety which can lead to an increase in risk taking. He discussed how driver psychology and behavior relate to speed limits, traffic waves, traffic signs, and traffic calming. In addition, Dr. James discussed the recent trend in legislation to prohibit aggressive driving. He stated that they are difficult to enforce since the language used in these types of legislation is often subjective or vague. For more information regarding aggressive driving go to www.drdriving.org or read Dr. James’ book Road Rage and Aggressive Driving: Steering Clear of Highway Warfare.

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July Meeting Summary

The ITE Hawaii Section Annual Meeting was held on July 3, 2003 at the Maple Garden Restaurant. Ray Davis, International Director for District 6 was the speaker and he provided a summary of the ongoing activities at the International and District 6 levels of ITE. In addition, Mr. Davis installed the new 2003-2004 Hawaii Section officers, which have been listed above.

For Year 2003, ITE international emphasis areas are the role of traffic operation in addressing congestion, traffic signal timing, emergency response and incident management, dissemination of safety research findings and best practices, transportation role’s in successful communities, workforce development, reauthorization of federal transportation legislation (SAFETEA), membership services and growth and implementation of ITE’s strategic plan. There were 912 PTOEs as of February 2003 and this certification is gaining acceptance as preferred qualifications in some States.

Mr. Davis reviewed the District 6 officers and committee members and summarized the support services to the local Sections and Student Chapters. Mr. Davis noted that several District 6 members are actively chairing ITE’s technical councils and he encouraged the Hawaii Section members to become more active in ITE.

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June Meeting Summary

At the June 17, 2003 Section meeting, Mr. Rick Stack of A&B Properties, Inc. discussed A&B’s current and future developments. A&B Properties, Inc. activities include land stewardship, planning and entitlement, development, acquisitions and investments as well as portfolio management and sales. A&B owns 90,580 acres in Hawaii and 210 acres on the mainland.

Active Maui projects include the Maui Business Park, Triangle Square and Kahului Airport Hotel in Kahului and The Vintage, The Summit and Fairway Shops in Kaanapali. On Oahu, A&B is currently developing the Kai Lani residential project in Ko Olina, a commercial project in the Royal Kunia area, and the Lanikea condominium in Waikiki. On the Big Island, they have the HoloHolo Ku residential project near Waimea town. On Kauai, A&B is modifiying their plans for Kukui Ula development and expanding commercial uses via the Port Allen Marina Center. In Valencia, California, A&B initiated the construction of the Westridge Executive Plaza in May 2003. Several long-term Maui projects are in the planning and entitlement stage, including subsequent phases of the Maui Business Park, Haliimaile Subdivision, Maalaea Village master planned community and other projects near Spreckelsville, Paia and Hamakuapoko.

Mr. Stack indicated that A&B prefers its investments to have a Hawaii focus in various types of office, retail, industrial and residential land uses, but does diversify with mainland properties. A&B investments tend to focus on near-term or immediate earnings impact and they like to have an active role in the management of their properties. Current A&B Oahu investments involve the 1100 Alakea office building and the Hokua residential condominium mauka of Ala Moana Beach Park.

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May Meeting Summary

At the May 15, 2003 joint dinner meeting with ASCE, Rodney Haraga, Hawaii DOT Director, spoke presented short-term goals and long-range plans for the Airports, Harbors and Highways Division.

For the Harbors Division, new cruise ships will require rehabilitation of Piers 1 and 2 at Aloha Tower. Also, improvements are planned for Nawiliwili, Hilo and Kahului Harbors. An intra-island ferry is being planned for commuters on Oahu. The State DOT is also considering proposals for inter-island ferry that would carry about 900 passengers and 200 cars; possible one-way fees between Maui and Oahu are $65 for passengers and $90 for vehicles. A $17 million fishing village will open in Honolulu Harbor in April 2004 and it will have an open fish market with auctions in the early morning.

For the Highways Division, the draft version of the new federal transportation legislation, called “SAFE TEA” is being reviewed. Currently, it proposes to spend about $247 billion on highway projects across the nation in the next 6 years. Hawaii share of these funds would start at $134 million and increase to $162 million, or a total of $905 million for the State of Hawaii over a six-year period. Mr. Haraga indicated that Hawaii would be asking legislators for greater funding, especially for traffic mitigation.

The Nimitz Highway contraflow four-month demonstration program will begin in August or September 2003. The Waimalu Bridge widening in the Pearl City area is going out to bid soon. Major Neighbor Island projects include Kapaa Bypass on Kauai, Mokulele Highway widening on Maui (which is already under construction) and Queen Kaahumanu Highway widening from two to four lanes on the Big Island. The North-South Road in Ewa, Oahu will be constructed along with the widening of Fort Weaver Road from four to six lanes. In August or September 2003, the Highways Division plans to start freeway patrols to remove accidents or stalled vehicles from the travel lanes on the State highway system during weekday daylight hours.

Internally, the DOT is looking at developing Project Status Reports (PSR) to promote accountability among internal DOT staff and the private sector consultants and contractors. Eventually DOT will begin to pursue liquidated damages to keep projects on schedule. The PSR will be placed on the DOT website for easy access by the public. Construction management practices and inspections are also being reviewed.

For the Airports Division, there will be two new gates at Aloha and Hawaiian Airlines at Honolulu International Airport (HIA) as well as new checkpoints and new Wikiwiki buses. The old HIA Bank of Hawaii parking lot will converted for a 30-minute waiting zone with concessionaires for motorists waiting to pick-up arriving passengers. For Kahului Airport, a new check-in area will be established; a new cargo building and alien species building will be constructed and the extension of the runway will be pursued for safety reasons. There will be general rehabilitation for Hilo Airport to fix leaky roofs and the jetways affected by acid rain. For the Lihue Airport, a new baggage handling area is planned. Security practices and management at all airports are being examined to determine how to systematized procedures at all airports, yet still be friendly to passengers.

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April Meeting Summary

At the April 24, 2003 meeting, Dr. Ricardo Archilla, an Assistant Professor at the UH Department of Civil and Engineering, spoke about how the lack of appropriate traffic engineering measures results in higher accident rates in Argentina when compared to the United States (US). Dr. Archilla gave a slideshow presentation of typical Argentina cities and roadway facilities. From his rough estimates, Dr. Archilla believes that Argentina has an accident rate of more than five times of the US, after accounting for differences in population and travel statistics.

Dr. Archilla indicated that the lack of traffic control devices, such as stop signs, lane demarcation or inadequate sight distances make it difficult to determine who has the traffic right-of-way at intersections. There are problems of mixed modes — automobiles, bicycles, scooters and pedestrians sharing the roads. For instance, joggers like to jog on the freeways. Also, Argentinian people like to socialize so it is common for motorists to stop along the roadway and talk to friends they see walking along the road.

Argentinian standard roadway designs were adopted many years ago and have not been modified for recent changes that would improve safety. Road construction cost is still a very important factor and the local highway departments resist change that would result in higher cost. For instance, there are no guardrails along mountainous roads that have no shoulders.

In the rural areas, people may herd animals across or alongside roads and motorists have to be patient and wait to maneuver around the animals. Motorists have been killed in high-speed accidents with large animals. Seat belt usage is low in Argentina.

Dr. Archilla noted that he had accepted the poor roadway and intersections facilities as normal conditions when he was growing in up in Argentina. After Dr. Archilla had lived in the US for awhile and returned home for a visit, then he began to recognize the great differences in US and Argentinian roadway designs. He has visited Argentina agencies to let them know what he has learned about improved safety designs, but change is slow in Argentina when the country has economic problems that have a higher priority for the public sector.

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March Meeting Tour Summary

During the month of March, the ITE Hawaii Section hosted two tours at the Matson Navigation Company in Sand Island. Mr. Bill Schmidt, Systems Manager, and Ms. Jocelyn Chagami, Manager, of Matson Navigation Company showed a presentation regarding Matson’s Team 2000 Project and provided a demonstration of their new DGPS based operating system. Mr. Schmidt explained that Matson currently has 3,150 feet of pier space that is worked by 7 large cranes. Their yard encompasses approximately 103 acres and handles a total of 373,956 lifts per year off and onto ships from the mainland, the neighbor islands, and the Marshall Islands. In 2000, Matson undertook a project entitled the Team 2000 project which would convert their operations from primarily a straddle carrier operation to a wheel/stack operation. Prior to 2000, Matson had employed straddle carriers which could stack containers approximately 3 units high. However, since their operations are primarily characterized by “just in time” goods, containers would only remain in the yard for a short period of time forcing them to stack the containers only 1-1.5 units high for easy identification and access. In addition, the maintenance cost for the straddle carriers was high. As a result, they undertook a 2 year project to overhaul their facilities to accommodate a wheel/stack operation instead. In addition, they implemented new technology and software that enables them to track all of their equipment and pre-plan all of the moves in the yard. Utilizing software like SPARCS (planning software) and NAVIS (3 dimensional graphical representation of the yard) in conjunction with DGPS (Differential GPS), dead reckoning, and sensors on all of their equipment, they are able to pinpoint the location of every container in their yard. In the future, they hope to expand their system and perhaps optimize their operations. One of the devices that they are currently testing for future use is a portable module that could attached to an entering vehicle to allow Matson to track community (or outside) vehicles while they are in their yard. Following the presentation, Mr. Schmidt turned the meeting over to Ms. Chagami who provided a real time demonstration of their new operating system. A vehicle visible from the meeting room was located on their computerized map of the yard and all of its subsequent movements and actions were tracked by the system. In addition, Ms. Chagami showed a recording of the activities that had transpired that morning. On the computerized map, various pieces of equipment were shown offloading two ships docked at the pier.

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February Meeting Summary

At the February 17, 2003 ITE meeting, the guest speaker was Mr. Anthony Gelish, an Associate with Booz Allen and Hamilton. He is currently working on the Critical Infrastructure Protection/ Homeland Security development effort for the Pacific Command, Command Surgeon’s office at Camp Smith. All the information Mr. Gelish presented at the meeting was from public sources. Mr. Gelish explained that the terrorism is defined as politically motivated, pre-meditated violence against non-combatants (civilians) to influence people – it changes behaviors, as evidenced by the higher security at our airports. If military soldiers attack soldiers in another country, then it is defined as war. Terrorists are considered to be socio-paths and display anti-social behavior. About 85% of infrastructure is in the private sector and the remaining is controlled by the public sector. Thus, protection of our infrastructure requires close working relationships between the federal, state, and county governments and the private sector.

Possible sources of information that terrorists could use to plan attacks:
1. Press releases about executive’s families when promoted, etc.
2. Emergency/disaster plans, especially those that identify weaknesses and protective measures.
3. EIS are public domain and contain a lot of detailed project information.
4. Vendor contractor/consultant information may identify company information or methodology.
5. Visitor tours of site facilities allow strangers onto the site.
6. Process/system information – how things are operated or maintained may be detailed in public forums.
7. Design plans on the website – convenient for design firms or construction contractors, but may show too much detail.

Risk Mitigation to less possibility of attack:
1. What cannot be identified cannot be attacked. Watch for website information that show your vulnerabilities.
2. What is not known cannot be used. (Do not place executive’s personal information on a website.)
3. Monitor for suspicious activity.
4. Vehicle travel and package delivery (packages should be held at a single site for inspection).
5. Let people know there is security – increase awareness of your security measures makes you less vulnerable.
6. Shred all documents with personal information, including email printouts.

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January Meeting Summary

At the ITE January 16, 2003 luncheon meeting, Mr. Earl Matsukawa, Director of the Planning Consultant Group at Wilson Okamoto Corporation, spoke about the County of Maui’s preservation plan for the bridges in the Hana Highway Historic District. This project only covered the 14 County bridges in this district, which are about 80-90 years old. The bridges are narrow (essentially single-lane bridges) with low posted weight limits (as low as 3 tons). The planning process for the project considered the historic resource values, public safety issues, funding, as well as community and agency input. Only one bridge was categorized as being individually significant, but the other bridges are considered as contributory resources to the historic character of the district. Some of the historic defining features of the bridges include the single lane operation, unique railings, inscriptions, arches, abutments and wingwalls. Replacement was considered for a number of bridges to address their structural deficiencies. However, if current AASHTO standards were followed, the replacement bridges would require two-lanes, raised railing heights, steel guardrails at the approaches, proper signage, and increased hydraulic capacity. However, the community objected to the widening of the bridges to two lanes so alternate designs needed to be explored. However, there were also tort liability issues to consider that are unique to Hawaii. For example, as the result of the Taylor-Rice case if you improve one component of the highway, then you should bring all components of the highway up to contemporary standards, even though the highway may have been built to earlier/different standards when it was originally constructed. The breakthrough in this project occurred when FHWA allowed a design exemption for a single-lane bridge on a case-by-case basis. As a result, single lane replacement bridges are designed for some locations with additional input from the community. For example, the community did not want more steel guardrails so rock guardwalls are being installed at the approaches. Also, the community requested a simpler, different type of signage so alternatives are being considered. In addition, to maintain the historic characteristics of each bridge, the designs will incorporate a simulation of the original railings and other features that were unique to each bridge.