Focus Area: Sustainable Infrastructure and Materials (SIM)

The research of Sustainable Infrastructure and Materials (SIM) group is focused on improving conditions and increasing the durability of infrastructure components in a sustainable context. Part of this research can be done through advanced work related to both cement- and asphalt-based materials and identifying their sustainable properties. In addition, transportation policies related to encouraging sustainability in infrastructure and facilitating their application at the State and local level are also being explored.


Traditionally, the infrastructure component of civil engineering has been viewed as contributing little to the concept of sustainability. However, recent advances in technology and analytical modeling, along with a departure from prescriptive specifications for building materials and contracts, have allowed for more prominent integration of sustainable concepts into the design and construction of transportation systems. Researchers from the VCASE SIM engage undergraduate and graduate students in externally funded research projects involving sustainability. Dr. Leslie McCarthy has conducted research projects involving warm mix asphalt, railway infrastructure, recycled materials for use in transportation infrastructure, asset management, new materials for context-sensitive solutions, and innovative project contracting techniques. Dr. Seri Park is a recognized expert on the use of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) that promote congestion mitigation on our nation’s highways. Dr. Park’s research topics include real-time traffic control and management as well as traffic sensor technology and application.

Recent Project Sponsors

U.S. Department of Transportation
National Cooperative Highway Research Program (of the National Academies)
Pennsylvania Department of Transportation
Rhode Island Department of Transportation

Selected Publications

McCarthy, L., J. Liang, “TRB e-Circular E-C155, Sensitivity Analysis of Flexible Pavement Design in MEPDG”, Transportation Research Board, National Research Council, Washington DC, July 2011, 80 pp.

M. Heitzman, R. McDaniel, A. Shah, L. Myers McCarthy, C. Paugh, J. Gudimettla, E. Dukatz, G.Reinke, and V. Goetz “A Multiple Laboratory Study of Hot Mix Asphalt Performance Testing” 2009, 33 pp.

Web-only document,

Zirkel, B., Park, S., McFadden, J., L. McCarthy, and M. Angelastro, “An Operational Analysis of Modern Roundabouts in the United States,” IMSA Journal, ISSN 1064-2560, September-October 2012, pp. 37-47.

Gaitan, L., Mehta, Y., Nolan, A., DuBois, E., Reger, D., Purdy, C., McCarthy, L., and A. Welker “Evaluation of the Degree of Blending of Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement (RAP) For Warm Mix Asphalt,” Journal of Solid Waste Management and Technology, May 2013.

Liang, J., McCarthy, L., Park, S., and J. McFadden, “Risk-Based Method for Development and Management of a Traffic Sign Inventory for Local Agencies,” Journal of Public Works Management & Policy, Volume 18 Issue 1, January 2013, pp. 78 – 91.

Oh, C. and S. Park. “Investigating the Effects of Daily Travel Time Patterns on Short-term Prediction.” Journal of Civil Engineering Korean Society of Civil Engineers, 15.7 (2011): 1263-1272.

McCarthy, L., S. Park, and D. Mensching. “A Proposed Technology evaluation Program for Warm Mix Asphalt.” National Cooperative Highway Research Program Research Results Digest 374, Transportation Research Board of the National Academies (2012). (

Park, S., and S. G. Ritchie. (2010). “Innovative single loop speed estimation model with advanced loop data.” Institution of Engineering and Technology Intelligent Transport System, 4(4), 232-243.

Park, S., and S. G. Ritchie. (2009). “Automated Real-Time Vehicle Classifier Development Based on Vehicle Signature.” International Journal of Granular Computing, Rough Sets and Intelligent Systems 1(2), 164–178.

McCarthy, L., Mensching, D., and Horgan, A. (2011).  “Effective delivery of small-scale federal-aid projects,” NCHRP Synthesis 414, National Cooperative Highway Research Program, Transportation Research Board.

McCarthy, L., Riegler, J., DaPonte, R., and Radlinska, A. (2011). “Applicability of decorative concrete overlays as a context sensitive solution for transportation infrastructure.” Proceedings of ASCE 1st Integrated Transportation & Development (TD&I) Congress, Chicago, IL.


Dr. McCarthy (PI) and Dr. Park (Co-PI) conducted research and co-authored a NCHRP Synthesis Report that has been published and can be accessed here.

NCHRP Project 09-22A Evaluation of the Quality-Related Specification Software (QRSS) Version 1.0 is available at

The NCHRP report is available online now. The report and appendixes are available at and

NCHRP Synthesis Report 414 (2011) -

NCHRP Research Results Digest (2012)  - 

Application of Decorative Concrete Overlay and Pattern to Field Testing Site
Bicycles as a Green Transportation Modal Choice in Urban Applications
Warm Mix Asphalt Produced at Temperatures 50 to 70 Degrees Lower than Traditional Asphalt Mixtures
Nondestructive Testing of In-Service Pavement: An Important Part of Monitoring the Structural Health of Roadway Pavements


Leslie McCarthy, PhD, PE, Lead

Seri Park, PhD, PTP, Alt Lead