Mitigation of non-standard design elements and incorporating safety improvements was an integral part of the design of the Tensleep-Buffalo Highway. The Wyoming Case Study illustrates the value of implementing multiple mitigation strategies in a location with extremely difficult environmental constraints. The following mitigation measures were implemented:
- Advance signing, both conventional
and dynamic, was provided for the steep grades and sharp horizontal curves.
- A brake-test pullout area
was provided for trucks. Other pullout areas along the route allow drivers
to pull completely off the roadway if necessary.
- An innovative truck escape
ramp was provided at a critical location.
- Climbing lanes were provided
to allow safe passing on the steep grades.
- Guardrail was constructed
to prevent run-off-the-road crashes.
The Wyoming Case Study is also a good model of context-sensitive design. In a mountainous area with immense natural resources and natural beauty, the Wyoming DOT reconstructed the highway in a way that blends in with the surroundings and follows the natural topography. Meeting all design criteria would have been neither feasible nor appropriate in such a setting. By making safety improvements and implementing mitigation measures for the design exceptions, the project is expected to have a positive effect on the substantive safety of the Tensleep-Buffalo Highway.