Highways are essential in getting people where they need to go. They promote tourism and economic growth. As land surveyors, Windrose is proud to play a vital role in the development of roadways. However, we are only one player in a large group of people that get highways constructed. Let’s explore the history of the highway system, the steps to getting one underway, and some projects we’ve worked on in the past.
How It All Began
In 1956, President Eisenhower signed the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 to create a 41,000-mile system of highways to promote safe and speedy travel. Over 60 years later, U.S. interstates now stretch over 46,000 miles long and serve as the route system for more than 250 million cars and trucks on the road.
How It All Comes Together
Building a roadway takes time because there are many steps involved in the process. Phase one is the planning phase, during which the transportation department meets with engineers, landscape architects, and others to determine what should be built and how it should be constructed. All of the involved parties use collected data to decide how to proceed.
The next phase is the design phase, and that is where land surveying companies like Windrose come in. Several different factors can influence the design of roadways, and we are here to uncover these things to ensure they won’t become a problem. Our team is able to collect accurate data along long stretches of expansion and communicate that data back to our RPLS and CAD teams enable the job to progress as new information comes in.
Thanks to new technology like GPS, this phase is now much shorter than it once was. GPS has eliminated the use of survey stakes to mark the road edges, and this more accurate way of marking boundaries helps the road stay in line with the design plans.
The final steps are the actual construction phases, which involve earthwork for a solid foundation and then paving for a smooth, safe driving surface.
Even after the road is completed, a surveyor’s job may not be done. In many cases, roadways will need additional surveys for changes, repairs, or renovations.
Windrose Land Surveying has been proud to work on a variety of highway projects in Texas, including stretches on US-59, Hardy Toll Road, FM 2100 expansion, and more. For a complete list of past transportation projects, see our portfolio.
For your commercial land surveying projects, give Windrose Land Surveying a call!