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Credit: WisDOT

A sign coordinator for the WisDOT office checks on roads using the sign maintenance software.
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The Wisconsin state legislature had considered raising the speed limit for freeways from 65 mph to 70 or 75 mph; WisDOT was able to fulfill requests for data on existing signs to help make this decision.
System capabilities

Implementing an automated sign management system helped WisDOT address reporting and asset tracking requirements outlined in Governmental Accounting Standards Board Statement No. 34 (GASB 34), issued in 1999. The sign management software allows WisDOT to maintain a detailed inventory of sign and support assets, record inspection information, schedule maintenance, and keep historical records.

The software allows WisDOT to customize screens, libraries, and reports. Predefined sign forms make it easy to enter, retrieve, and analyze sign and support information, record service requests, and initiate work activities.

In addition, the sign information can be graphically displayed and manipulated in a geographical information system environment. WisDOT uses a graphical interface that captures a series of photographs taken with special cameras mounted to a van. The eye-level photolog takes a snapshot picture both straight ahead and to the side every 52.8 feet. The state takes new photos of each road every three years. With each snapshot the van also takes the global positioning system (GPS) coordinates and the agency is in the process of incorporating that GPS data into the databases. Using this collection of XY coordinates, state officials are looking forward to having a dynamic map capturing sign asset information from point A to point B with just a few clicks of the mouse.

WisDOT currently is collecting pavement marking information for a statewide database on the highways they maintain and are also piloting an effort to collect all signal and lighting asset information for statewide implementation later this year.