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Course Description

Geometric Design: Applying Flexibility and Risk Management

PROGRAM AREA: Highway Safety
Instructor-led Training (ILT)Instructor-led Training (ILT)
Calendar Year
Host Price
2 Days
1.2 Units
$400 Per Participant
2 Days
1.2 Units
$400 Per Participant

TRAINING LEVEL: Accomplished

CLASS SIZE: Minimum: 20 Maximum: 30


Highway designers often face complex trade-offs when developing projects. A "quality" design may be thought of as satisfying the needs of a wide variety of users while balancing the often competing interests of cost, safety, mobility, social and environmental impacts. Applying flexibility and risk management in highway design requires more than simply assembling geometric elements from the available tables, charts and equations of design criteria. This course provides participants with knowledge of the functional basis of critical design criteria to enable informed decisions when applying engineering judgment and flexibility. The course exercises and case studies provide practical applications of current knowledge from research and operational experience of human factors and safety effects for various design elements.


Upon completion of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Define the relationship among design criteria, design guidelines and design standards
  • Describe the concepts of design speed, target speed, posted speed and operating speed
  • Describe the FHWA Policy for Design Standards and Design Exceptions
  • List the 13 controlling geometric design criteria that require a formal written design exception from FHWA
  • Evaluate the safety effects and qualitative risk of proposed design exceptions
  • Evaluate the effectiveness and appropriateness of mitigation strategies for design exceptions
  • Describe the relationship between safety and key geometric features of highway alignment and cross section
  • Describe the applicability of a human-centered approach to geometric design considerations


This course is targeted toward engineers that are involved in applying engineering judgment in the selection of design criteria and in the assessment of design exceptions. It is most practical for practicing engineers and highway decision makers from state highway agencies, local agencies, design consultants, and FHWA field offices.

If you have questions about this NHI training, please contact NHI at or 877.558.6873.


Start Date: 11/08/2016
End Date: 11/09/2016
Location: FRESNO, CA
Local Coordinator: Teri Anderson (916) 653-3986
No Public Seats Available
Please contact the Local Coordinator to enroll in this session.
3 FHWA Seats

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Host this Course

The National Highway Institute (NHI) has been accredited as an Accredited Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET). In obtaining this accreditation, NHI has demonstrated that it complies with the ANSI/IACET Standard which is recognized internationally as a standard of good practice. As a result of their Accredited Provider status, NHI is authorized to offer IACET CEUs for its programs that qualify under the ANSI/IACET Standard.


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