UTEP recognized both as a National and Regional University Transportation Centers
November 13, 2013
The Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) of the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDoT) has awarded five National and eight Regional University Transportation Centers (UTCs). The Center for Transportation Infrastructure Systems (CTIS) at UTEP is the only research center in the nation that has been designated as both a National and a Regional UTC. The UTCs focus on internationally recognized centers of excellence to conduct research that directly supports the priorities of the USDoT to promote the safe, efficient and environmentally sound movement of goods and people.
On the national level, UTEP is a member of a consortium known as "Center for Advanced Infrastructure and Transportation (CAIT)" led by Rutgers University with partners such as Columbia, and Princeton. As the first and only national center designated by USDOT in the area of "State of Good Repair," the goal of this UTC is to conduct collaborative cutting edge research to improve the condition of the nation's transportation infrastructure. "As an important partner of the CAIT national center and consortium, UTEP's Center for Transportation Infrastructure Systems plays an active role in defining the overall research/educational objectives of the program and provides important contributions to its research portfolio in the areas of pavement systems and infrastructure condition monitoring," said Dr. Ali Maher, the Director of CAIT.
On the Regional level, UTEP is a member of Region 6 UTC led by the University of Oklahoma under "Southern Plains Transportation Center (SPTC)." Our regional partners are the Texas Tech University and University of New Mexico, amongst others. The goal of this regional UTC is to address the transportation infrastructure needs that will improve the quality of life for the residents of the region in general and border region specifically. "Extreme summer temperatures, flash floods, and poor soils create tremendous challenges to the region's transportation infrastructure and public safety. Southern Plains Transportation Center is uniquely qualified to address climate adaptive transportation and freight infrastructure that is crucial to public safety and economic prosperity," said Musharraf Zaman, director of SPTC.
Civil Engineering Professor and Director of the Center for Transportation Infrastructure Systems (CTIS) at UTEP, Dr. Soheil Nazarian acts as the Associate Director of both UTCs at UTEP. "Being the only institution in the US that has been designated both as Regional and National centers will bring a level of excellence in transportation research that can help UTEP achieve its goal of becoming a Tier 1 research institution," Nazarian said.
About UTEP College of Engineering
The College of Engineering is a national leader in engineering education and a leading producer of doctoral, masters and baccalaureate degreed Hispanic engineers. The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) is the second oldest academic institution of The University of Texas System. Washington Monthly ranks UTEP as No. 7 in the nation in its annual College Guide and Rankings. The magazine's rankings were based on a combination of social mobility, research production, commitment to service and cost-effectiveness of degree completion. For more information visit engineering.utep.edu
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