FHWA Resilience Pilots

FHWA supported the work of state Departments of Transportation (DOTs) and Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) to develop and pilot approaches for assessing the vulnerability of transportation systems to climate change and develop strategies for building resilience in the transportation sector. Nineteen pilot projects were selected and the pilot jurisdictions worked with FHWA's Climate Change and Extreme Weather Vulnerability Assessment Framework. This FHWA website includes the individual pilot studies for the pilot projects funded in 2013-2015 and webinars of the pilot teams discussing their work and their findings. FHWA worked with ICF and others to develop case studies of each of the pilot projects that are also available on this website. More information on the background and development of the FHWA pilots is available from the Adaptation Clearinghouse here.  

The pilot jurisdictions included:

  • Arizona DOT assessed the vulnerability of the state highway system to higher temperatures, drought, and intense storms.
  • California DOT (or CalTrans) assessed the vulnerability of assets in four counties.
  • Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO) and the City of Austin that examined risks to nine critical assets from flooding, drought, extreme heat, wildfire, and ice.
  • Connecticut DOT conducted a systems level assessment of the vulnerability of bridges and culverts to flooding.
  • The Hillsborough Metropolitan Planning Organization (Hillsborough MPO) in Florida assessed the vulnerability of surface transportation to sea-level rise, storm surge, and flooding and identified cost-effective risk management strategies.
  • Iowa DOT evaluated future flood conditions and developed a methodology for using climate projections of rainfall to model riverine flooding in two river basins to analyze potential impacts on six bridges.
  • Maine DOT assessed the vulnerability of sea-level rise and storm surge in six coastal towns to develop depth damage functions and adaptation design options for individual sites.
  • Maryland State Highway Administration conducted flood inundation mapping and vulnerability analyses to develop risk ratings for assets in two counties.
  • Massachusetts DOT assessed the vulnerability of the I-93 artery and tunnel in Boston to sea-level rise and extreme storms by developing a hydrodynamic flood model.
  • The Metropolitan Transportation Commission in the San Francisco Bay Area assessed adaptation options for key transportation assets vulnerable to sea-level rise impacts.
  • Michigan DOT developed a vulnerability assessment of transportation infrastructure and integrated findings into an existing assessment management database to prioritize assets and sites most at risk of impacts. 
  • Minnesota DOT assessed transportation conduced a vulnerability assessment of bridges, culverts, pipes, and roads paralleling streams to flooding due to heavy precipitation; the DOT selected two culverts to conduct more detailed planning to consider potential damage and economic losses to inform asset management planning.
  • New York State DOT assessed the vulnerability of rural transportation systems to increased temperatures, precipitation, and more frequent extreme storms and developed a benefits valuation approach for prioritizing culvert replacements.
  • North Central Texas Council of Governments assessed vulnerabilities of the transportation system in the Dallas-Fort Worth region to extreme weather and population growth.
  • The Oregon DOT assessed the vulnerability of coastal highways to extreme weather and sea-level rise; for priority hazard areas the study included additional analyses on adaptation options, costs and benefits.
  • Broward Metropolitan Planning Organization in South Florida led a four-county regional study to calculate vulnerability scores for "regionally significant" roads and rail infrastructure and developed recommendations on how agencies could incorporate the study's findings into everyday decisionmaking.
  • Tennessee DOT conducted an analysis of the vulnerability of transportation infrastructure to extreme weather that resulted in a statewide inventory of critical assets and their historical and projected vulnerability to extreme temperatures, precipitation, wind, and tornadoes. 
  • Washington State DOT examined adaptation options in the Skagit River Basin an area of the state that is vulnerable to flooding; the pilot examined coordination needs among federal, state, and local agencies to develop flood risk reduction strategies.
  • Western Federal Lands Highway Division, Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities assessed the unique risks to AK infrastructure posed by loss of sea ice, sea-level rise, wind, and shoreline erosion, and permafrost melt.


If you have any trouble accessing the website link above, please find here: an archived page. You may find this has limited use. 


Related Organizations:

  • Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
  • Plan Hillsborough (Florida)
  • Arizona Department of Transportation
  • California Department of Transportation (Caltrans)
  • Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT)
  • Maine Department of Transportation
  • Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT)
  • California Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC)
  • Michigan Department of Transportation
  • Minnesota Department of Transportation

Related Resources:


Resource Category:

Resource Types:

  • Case study

States Affected:


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