A Publication of the Alabama Section of the Institute of Transportation Engineers

Volume XLIV - Issue 3

Fall 2014

ALSITE Quick Links
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Upcoming Events


ALSITE Fall Meeting


October 7

AU Hotel and Conference Center

Auburn, AL

Meeting Website


2014 Officers 



Greg Dawkins


Vice- President

Jeff Stephenson



Rod Turochy


Affiliate Director

Kevin Garmon


Assistant Affiliate Director

Darrell Vines


Southern District Representative

Becky White


Immediate Past President

Becky Malenke


Contact an Officer

PDH Certificates

The September 2014 Newsletter of the Alabama Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors mentions that completion certificates will be required to verify PDH credits.  As a result, ALSITE is planning to issue certificates for all upcoming meetings in order to meet these new requirements. Will will be doing this in addition to our PDH sign-in which will add an extra layer of confirmation of attendance. 

You can access the referenced newsletter here: 

September 2014 Newsletter 


President's Message
Greg Dawkins, P.E.
ALSITE President


WOW! It is amazing how fast time flies. It seems like it was just a couple of months ago when I was elected Secretary/Treasurer and now my time as President is coming to a close. It has been an honor to serve as your President this year!  I am proud to be part of an organization that is actively serving our communities and our profession.  My time on the Board of Directors has been challenging and rewarding, and I encourage anyone who has not had the privilege of serving to consider running for office in the future.


Be sure to join us for our upcoming Fall Meeting on October 7th at the Auburn University Hotel and Conference Center at the Loveliest Village on the Plains!  We need to have a great turnout from our Section and students.  This meeting will provide thought provoking technical presentations, networking opportunities.

As always, ALSITE continues to be active between meetings.  Be sure to check out our website at


Thank you for allowing me to serve on your Board of Directors for the last three years and as a final note, please say "Thank you" to a veteran, because without them, we would not have the freedom we enjoy every day. 


Gregory L. Dawkins, P.E.

ALSITE President



2014 ALSITE Fall Meeting



The 2014 Fall meeting will be held on Tuesday, October 7, 2014 in Auburn, Alabama at the Auburn University and Dixon Hotel and Conference Center.  There technical agenda includes topics on the use of Flashing Yellow Arrows, innovative intersections and the recent Toomer's Corner Redevelopment.  The agenda for the meeting can be found here.


Register Today!

2014 ITE Annual Meeting & Exhibit Highlights

Becky Malenke


The Institute of Transportation Engineers held their 2014 Annual Meeting & Exhibit August 10th - 13th in Seattle, WA.  Two primary activities occurred on the opening day of the meeting: a graduation ceremony honoring the inaugural LeadershipITE class and the Annual Board of Direction Meeting. 


On Monday morning, President Hibbett Neel welcomed everyone to Seattle and shared an update of actions taken at the previous day's Board Meeting.  One of the primary actions presented was the adoption of a $30 to 30 tiered membership dues structure for younger members.  This new dues structure was proposed by a LeadershipITE Group and allows graduating students to join ITE at no cost.  Each year, their dues will increase by $30 until age 30 when they will pay full dues.  Districts will receive 10% and Sections will receive 5% of these payments.  Because ITE sees the value in younger member involvement, they are willing to take a temporary loss in revenue.  At the same time, they are urging Districts and Sections to use the lower dues, reduced conference registration fees, and increased benefits to actively recruit young members.  A Young Member Committee, chaired by Katherine Kortum with the Transportation Research Board, will continue to develop recruitment strategies and increased benefits for younger members.




The meeting continued with opening Plenary Sessions highlighting new transportation technologies.  Numerous technical presentations were given on a variety of topics including Roundabout Design and Implementation, Bicycle Facilities and Operations, Innovative Design and Maintenance, Policy and Engagement, Signals, Technology, Mobility and Operations, Safety, Trip Generation, Context Sensitive Implementation, and Next GenITE.  Technical tours were offered to give participants a close-up view of Washington State DOT's Traffic Management Center and Seattle Children's Hospital Parking and Travel Demand Management.  A Cycling in Seattle tour was also available to participants.  Tommy Lee and Richard Caudle led the Traffic Bowl where the University of Texas at Austin emerged as the 2014 Grand Champions.  The conference culminated in the ITE Excellence in Transportation Awards Lunch where many deserving individuals were honored for their accomplishments.


A Report From Your Southern District Representative

Submitted by Becky White


The ITE International Annual Meeting and Exhibit was held in Seattle, WA on August 10-13.  ALSITE's Richard Caudle and Becky Malenke were there to enjoy the sights and sounds of the great northwest.  SDITE was represented in the Traffic Bowl competition by Clemson University.  Unfortunately one of our southern neighbors, the University of Texas at Austin took home the Grand Championship trophy.


The SDITE Leadership Development Team has launched two new communication tools.  An e-newsletter was distributed in early August to all graduates of the SDITE Leadership Class.  The e-newsletter will be published three or four times each year with the goal of providing information to help class graduates and others to continue in personal growth and leadership development.  

If you did not receive the first e-newsletter and would like to be added to the email roster, contact me at [email protected].  Soon after the newsletter was launched, the Leadership Team also started a Facebook page called "SDITE Leadership Program".  Check it out and don't forget to "like" it if you want to see all the posts. 


A delegation of representatives from ALSITE conducted a tour of potential host sites for the 2018 SDITE Annual Meeting.  Mobile was chosen as the host city for 2018 and negotiations are currently underway with the Riverview Renaissance hotel.  2018 seems like a long time away but it will be here before we know it.


The SDITE Year-End Board Meeting is scheduled for December 7-8 in Nashville, TN.  If you have any concerns or ideas you would like presented to the District Board, please contact me. 


Becky White, PTP

Vision and Creative Thinking
Robert L. Wolfe, Sr.

Like many of us today, I have always dreamed of going to new places and new experiences. Ever since I can remember, everything was a vehicle or a road. An open pair of children's scissors became a motorcycle and things that I picked up frequently became an airplane.

I was always building a roadway or an airport, in my mind. When I could find "good dirt" I would build roads for my toy cars. Many other kids liked to find a firecracker to blow up my creation, but that's life. One time I actually watched crews build a real "Tar McAdam road" and thought it was exciting. I saw workmen place th

e stones and pound them into place. When the stones were in place and sufficiently pounded, the steam roller did the final compaction and "Tar" covered the base ("real Tarmac").

 A real highlight came in 1939. New York was host to the Worlds Fair and my father had an opportunity to take the family.  He had just bought a new Lincoln Zephyr V-12. Lincoln advertised that you could hear the clock at 100mph. Dad felt that it was his responsibility to assure truth in advertising, and you could hear the clock. After satisfying his responsibility, we started off to New York with a new tire in the trunk and another on the roof.

The trip to New York gave us a real opportunity to see the "modern highway" system. Few roads were more than two lanes and no great effort was given to highway safety. Along the way we observed many severe accidents. Often, in the accident, there were people covered with sheets. Many of the cars on the road were built on wooden frames and steel covering was tacked into place. Tire construction was satisfactory to "roll round town" but not for long, high speed trips (as evidenced by our spares). After all, REALISTICALLY, if anyone wanted to go between towns THEY COULD TAKE A TRAIN, BUS OR AIRPLANE.

When we arrived at the Fair, one focal point stood out. The Trilon and Perisphere were the center of attraction and symbol for the Fair. The Trilon was a triangular spire pointing up to symbolize vision. The Perisphere held the focus of the Fair, THE WORLD OF TOMORROW, the vision of Norman Bel Geddes . His vision included growth of tremendous cities and A TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM THAT WOULD ALLOW TRAVELERS TO MOVE AT 100MPH BETWEEN CITIES.  There were other impressive things at the fair, first TV, Heinz little pickle jars given out, roadway surface made from old rubber tires (Ford exhibit), but the WORLD OF TOMORROW, WITH 100 MPH ROADS has had the greatest impact in our society.

By the way, with the help of the two spares and one we purchased on the road, we made it safely home. The one we picked up on the road was a truck tire not designed for the Lincoln, but it got us home.

In 1939 the country was still in a depression. The Roosevelt administration was intrigued by Bel Geddes dream, not for transportation, but as a jobs program. Roosevelt had a train to take him to his vacation sites in Campobello, New Brunswick and Warm Springs Georgia, so he didn't need an Interstate system.

CONGRESS PASSED THE FEDERAL-AID HIGHWAY ACT OF 1944 THAT ESTABLISHED THE NATIONAL SYSTEM OF INTERSTATE HIGHWAYS. AS A PART OF THAT BILL THE BUREAU OF PUBLIC ROADS (BPR, NOW FHWA) WAS GIVEN THE RESPONSIBILITY FOR DEVELOPING INTERSTATE DESIGN STANDARDS. In addition to development of standards for design, construction and administration a preliminary system was to be planned. Funding, 50/50, was only provided for national highways and "feeder" roadways.

Between 1944 and 1955 I had a "Blip" which included: high school graduation, beginning college, Tennessee Highway Department, City of Nashville, marriage, Korean War, and college graduation. All were exciting and informative.

In 1953 Dwight Eisenhower was elected president. His military background made him aware of the need for a National transportation system for efficient access to key locations within the country. The system had been approved in 1944 but there was no zeal for funding. All of the principal cities wanted money for circumferential and radial roadways to serve the central city (reflected in early Interstate Route alignment and planning). People could still use train, bus and airplane for travel between cities.

The President knew that a responsible transportation plan would benefit the total nation. In an effort to develop financing for the system the administration developed and promoted a bond program. This program failed in 1955.

The program was defeated but not the President. In 1955 he appointed a team to develop a funding source. The team membership appointments were pure genius. The membership included shareholders that would eventually both contribute to the funding and share in the benefit.

Chairman, General Lucius Clay, Retired - Engineer
"Frank" Turner - Bureau of Public Roads
Steve Bechtel - Bechtel Corporation
Sloan Colt - Banker
Bill Roberts - Allison-Chalmers
Dave Beck - International Brotherhood of Teamsters

In 1955 I joined Sverdrup and Parcel in Saint Louis. I was assigned to the Mark Twain Expressway ( FAI-14) and Northern Illinois Toll Highway design team.  The facilities were designed using standards developed which were developed between 1944 and 1955. Ralph Bartlesmeier, who was involved in the standards developments (which are still in use today) guided much of the design. He later became Director of the BPR.

Passing of the Eisenhower administration promoted FEDERAL-AID HIGHWAY OF 1956 with a 90/10 funding plan signaled the beginning of the Interstate Highway System as we know it today. Mark Twain Expressway, FAI-14, became Interstate route I-70. Mark Twain Expressway, I - 70 was let to construction as the Nations first Interstate Highway.

As design on I - 70 began to wind down, preliminary design for the Chesapeake bay bridge/tunnel project was initiated. This project would have never happened in the "take the train" era, prior to establishment of the Interstate System.

In 1957 I moved to Miami and new Interstate and Expressway challenges. It has been both interesting and informative to participate in and observe the development and growth of the Interstate Highway System. The road, at times, has been ROUGH but that's another story.

Norman Bel Geddes had a Vision, Franklin D. Roosevelt nudged it along, Dwight Eisenhower made It a Reality through Creative Thinking and all Americans have benefited from their efforts.

2014 HMR ALSITE Scholorship Awards

Submitted by Dr. Dan Turner 

The Board of Directors of Harold M. Raynor ALSITE Scholarships, Inc. is pleased to announce the winners of its 2014 scholarships.


Mr. Isaac Wasilefsky, a senior in the Department of Civil Engineering at Auburn University, received the Charles E. Alexander Memorial Transportation Engineering Scholarship of $10,000.   Mr. Gauen Rhys Alexander, a junior in the Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering at the University of Alabama at Birmingham has received the Billy Jones Memorial Traffic Engineering Scholarship of $8,000.


Mr. Wasilefsky is from Huntsville and anticipates graduation in the fall semester of 2015 with a duel degree in transportation, and business and finance.  He is paying his own way through school and previously held a co-op position with an engineering firm that analyzed airframe structures.  Currently he holds two student jobs:  tutoring athletes, and working with a civil engineering professor as an undergraduate research assistant.  He holds a 4.00 GRA, is a member of multiple honors societies, and is active in the student chapters of ASCE, ITE and Chi Epsilon (CE honor fraternity).


Mr Alexander is from Vestavia Hills.  He has twice been named to the Dean's List and the Presidential Honors list, has been appointed as a Space Grant Scholar, and has participated in his department's honors research program.  He has supported his education for the past two years by working with a geotechnical engineering firm as a testing technician, and has received Certification for testing concrete, soils, asphalt, concrete, and fire proofing by the American Concrete Institute, the International Code Council, and the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies.


Mr. Wasilefsky and Mr. Alexander received recognition, scholarship checks and plaques at the Annual banquet of the Alabama Section ITE (ALSITE) in Gulf Shores in June.    

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If you would like to become an ALSITE NEWS sponsor, please contact Clark Bailey by email, at [email protected], or by phone at 205.655.8855.

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