AASHTOWare Bridge Management Product Update

May 2020

The AASHTOWare Bridge Task Force product update is provided to keep all AASHTOWare Bridge Management (BrM) Software users apprised of recent activity related to the development of the software. The Task Force is committed to providing quarterly updates to help improve communication between the Task Force and those interested in the product.

Save the Date – 2020 BrMUG Meeting

The 2020 annual Bridge Management User Group Meeting (BrMUG) will be held in Minneapolis, MN, on September 1-2, 2020. Complete information on the 2020 BrMUG Meeting can be found here.

COVID-19 Implications

Although all AASHTO meetings through July 31, 2020 have been cancelled, we are hopeful that things will be back to some form of pre-pandemic normal between now and early September. The conference is about four months away, so we are moving forward with conference planning activities. We realize that social distancing restrictions may continue and could result in the conference being cancelled; however, should that occur, we plan to pull the most substantive material from the planned agenda and look for opportunities to make these presentations available through virtual presentations.

In the Meantime

If you plan to attend the meeting, COVID-19 permitting, please register for the conference and make your hotel reservations. Information on conference registration and the hotel room block can be found on the 2020 BrMUG Website. The deadline for hotel reservations is August 1, 2020. If the conference ends up being cancelled, all sleeping room reservations made under our group reservation room block will also be cancelled by the hotel.

Please DO NOT purchase your airline ticket at this time. With the uncertainty of the COVID-19 situation and the varying airline policies on compensating travelers for unused airfare, airline tickets should not be purchased until we get closer to the conference dates.

BrM Version 6.4 Highlight

The AASHTOWare Bridge Task Force is pleased to announce that the BrM 6.4 development work plan and contract have been approved and executed. The BrM 6.4 Project includes multimedia module enhancements (a highly ranked priority for several years) and various other enhancements that will improve the BrM user experience. The Task Force chose multimedia as the key enhancement for this next major release given the fact that the user requirements are well defined, the functional design specifications have been completed, and there is a low probability that the proposed federal changes will impact or cause rework within this area of the application.

The multimedia enhancements consist of four major categories:

  • Better organization of the current user interface fields and adding new fields and features.
  • Development of a widget to more easily access multimedia files from within specific tasks to eliminate the need to navigate to the multimedia module to view/access files.
  • Security improvements to provide more control.
  • A foundation for integrating BrM multimedia with other multimedia platforms (e.g. ProjectWise).

Additionally, BrM version 6.4 will offer other improvements including:

  • Addition of the remaining FHWA validation checks and associated software changes.
  • Addition of a “Date Entered” and “Entered By” fields on the Tunnel Inspection page.
  • Tunnel data import into the sample database and associated testing.
  • Various bug fixes, usability enhancements, and maintenance improvements identified by the user community.
  • Integration of approved service unit customizations into core including policy rule weighted element condition states and the availability of an improved Optimizer log.

The Task Force will keep the user community apprised of the development and testing progress as well as our schedule for release as work progresses. Special thanks to the Alabama Department of Transportation and the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet for their financial commitment to this enhancement via service unit contributions.

Life Cycle Cost Analysis (LCCA) Work Plan Update

Screenshot of the LCCA module user interface

Since the release of version 6.3 in January 2020, Mayvue has been hard at work building the enhanced functionality of the LCCA module. As previously communicated, this was the highest priority enhancement voted by the user community during the 2018 BrMUG. The LCCA module will enable agencies to create life cycle plans for each bridge and profiles to be used as part of the network analysis in terms of a refined life cycle cost for any given number of bridges.

Mayvue is periodically demonstrating the new LCCA UI framework and backend functionalities to Testing and Optimizer TAG members. This is a new approach for BrM development projects and is a step towards adopting the Agile software development methodology. Traditionally, TAGs are involved in reviewing and testing near the end of the development phase. The Task Force is excited to move forward a more agile development approach to support earlier involvement and feedback from end-users.

The Task Force and Mayvue plan to hold Testing and Optimizer TAG walk-through webinars at significant development milestones. Please check out the BrM YouTube channel for recordings of these webinars in the near future. 

BrM Solicitation and License Fee Announcement

The Task Force recently forwarded an announcement to AASHTO member agency end user designees to make them aware of the forthcoming BrM solicitation to support BrM compliance with the proposed changes to the National Bridge Inspection Standards (NBIS) and Specifications for the National Bridge Inventory (SNBI) and the BrM license fee increase for FY2021. Please send any questions or concerns regarding this announcement to Judy Tarwater (jtarwater@aashto.org).

AASHTO and the Task Force are keenly aware of the potential financial impact that the COVID-19 pandemic will have on transportation funding. As an active and valued member of the AASHTOWare BrM community, we hope you understand the need for a license fee increase to support the long-term health of the product and the future solicitation to support the proposed changes to the NBIS.

To support the necessary funding needs the Task Force is “thinking outside the box” to remind licensees that, if needed, funding that members have banked with AASHTO as BrM service units can be used by agencies to support BrM license fee payments or participation in the upcoming solicitation. In addition, when the planned solicitation described below is formally issued, AASHTO will reach out to FHWA to request approval for members to use their State Planning and Research (SP&R) funds at 100% federal participation.

aashtowarebridge.com – New and Improved Website

The aashtowarebridge.com website was recently updated to serve as a single point of reference for all modules within the AASHTOWare Bridge product suite (Bridge Management, Bridge Rating and Bridge Design). Users can quickly navigate between the modules in the site’s header. This effort was undertaken to consolidate the AASHTOWare Bridge modules into a single site and to bring the site in alignment with AASHTOWare website standards.

The relevant content has been migrated from the old website with new content added. Information available on our website includes:

  • Support related information
  • Training material and options
  • Links to other BrM related information & sites

As always, if you have any suggestions on how to improve our website or have recommendations for additional content to be added please let Mayvue know by emailing BrM@mayvue.com.

Mayvue’s Free Multimedia Mobile App Now Available

Mayvue is actively developing a full-featured BrM mobile inspection application to be released in the near future; however, through feedback received from the user community, Mayvue has learned that many agencies need a more efficient way to collect multimedia today. As a result, Mayvue built a separate mobile application that focuses solely on simplifying the multimedia capture and BrM upload process.

Today, this application is available for all BrM agencies to use for FREE indefinitely! The application works across all iOS, Android, and desktop devices. Watch the video.

If you want to learn more, or join the BrM agencies already trying it out, please email Mayvue at mobile@mayvue.com.

Reminder – BrM Training Videos Available

The Task Force authorized the creation of numerous BrM training videos focused on frequently asked questions and available functionalities/modules added to the software. These videos contain useful information for all levels of users and are readily available on the BrM YouTube channel located here. Be sure to subscribe and click the bell icon to receive notifications whenever a video is released. Requests for additional topics to be considered for video instruction should be submitted to BrM@mayvue.com. Your input is always appreciated.

The AASHTOWare Bridge Task Force