UFTI News – September 2016

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Researchers Recommend Strategy to Incorporate Autonomous Vehicles into MPO Long Range Transportation Plans
A recently enacted bill (HB 7061) in the Florida legislature requires that Long Range Transportation Plans (LRTPs) in the state include infrastructure changes to accommodate advanced technologies such as autonomous vehicles. And with Florida as one of the states in the nation to have approved on-road testing of these vehicles, state entities such as Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) need to start thinking of incorporating AV technologies into their LRTPs. To assist MPOs with this process, researchers from the University of Florida Transportation Institute (UFTI) have provided a set of recommendations in the recently published…[Read more]

UFTI Upgrades Its Full-Car Simulator, Creating Opportunities for Interdisciplinary Driving Research
An interdisciplinary group of researchers at the University of Florida (UF) has joined forces to enhance one of its driving simulators with up-to-date technology to study the human-vehicle interactions. Such studies aspire to potentially keep people safe, improve their driving performance, quality of life, or help them adapt to new technology, e.g. advanced driver assistance systems such as automatic cruise control or collision avoidance systems,  in a an effective and safe manner. [Read more] 


UFTI Student Receives ARTBA Future Industry Spotlight Award
Eleftheria (Ria) Kontou, has been selected to receive the 2016 Future Industry Spotlight Award by the American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA). This award is given every year to a female graduate or undergraduate student enrolled at a U.S. college or university who has an outstanding academic record and who has demonstrated leadership qualities outside the academic environment. [Read more]
Graduate Student Spotlight: Pruthvi Manjunatha

Every year on September 15th, the engineering community in India celebrates Engineering Day. This special day is a tribute to Sir M. Visvesvaraya, who is considered one of the country’s best engineers. To UFTI doctoral candidate Purthvi Manjunatha, this day is especially important for him because…[Read more]

UFTI Fellowship Spotlight: Kyle Ventura
Once in a while, you come across a really interesting graduate student, one that is not only academically talented, but one who can speak a second language and is musically inclined with interests in singing and dancing. Kyle Ventura is one of those students – a first year graduate student affiliated with the UFTI. He was awarded one of the Institute’s graduate fellowships this fall, and he loves to swing dance, sing acapella and can even speak Mandarin (Chinese). [Read more]

Technology Transfer

Graduate Students Receive Scholarships during the Central Florida WTS Awards Banquet
Congratulations to Eleftheria (Ria) Kontou and Megan McGinley, both graduate students in the UFTI transportation engineering program. Kontou and McGinley are executive board members of the WTS Florida Gator Student Chapter at UF, serving as the vice president and secretary, respectively. Both students were awarded the Frankee Hellinger Scholarship. The special night included Florida Department of Transportation Secretary Jim Boxold as the keynote speaker. [See images from the event]
McTrans Website has a New Look!
The McTrans website has been updated to provide more interactive accessibility with an entirely new look and feel. Check it out for software update information and training course opportunities! [Visit the website]
October Schedule for the McTrans Highway Capacity Analysis Webinars
This webinar series presents lectures, software demonstrations and application examples on the Highway Capacity Manual (HCM) procedures, including updates coming in the 6th Edition.  Step-by-step instruction of the HCM methodologies will be provided for each analytical chapter.  The Highway Capacity Software (HCS) implements and automates the HCM procedures. The webinars also include detailed information on the 6th Edition and HCS7. [Read more]


Dr. Chimay Anumba joins the UFTI External Advisory Board
The UFTI is pleased to welcome Dr. Chimay Anumba as a member of the Institute’s External Advisory Board. Dr. Anumba serves as the Dean of the College of Design Construction and Planning. He received his Ph.D. in civil engineering at the University of Leeds in the UK and his D.Sc. from…[Read more]

WTS Presents a Symposium on the “Old Florida Heritage Highway” , October 19, 2016, 6 pm to 8 pm, Reitz Union
Mark your calendars! The WTS Advancing Women in Transportation student chapter at UF is hosting a symposium on Wednesday, October 19, 2016 from 6 pm to 8 pm in G-310, Reitz Union (UF Campus). A raffle and reception will follow the event. The symposium will bring together planners, transportation engineers,wildlife conservationists and academics to make the UF and Gainesville community aware of the state-designated scenic highway, its needs as related to resource protection and infrastructure improvements, its Master Plan and finally, what can we do to protect this corridor. RSVP by Oct. 17th to iaviles@ce.ufl.edu.  [Read full announcement and flier]

UFTI Annual Picnic, October 23, 2016, at Lake Wauburg, RSVP Now!
The picnic will take place at Lake Wauburg’s South Pavilion I on Oct. 23, 2016, from 11 am to 2 pm. Food and refreshments will be provided. RSVP by October 19th to Jennifer Gomez (UFTI Administrative Assistant) at ufti@eng.ufl.edu[Read more and view flier]

General Announcements

The University of Florida is soliciting applications for two tenure-track faculty positions in its Transportation Program!
The Engineering School of Sustainable Infrastructure and Environment (ESSIE) in the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering (HWCOE) at the University of Florida is soliciting applications for two tenure-track faculty positions that may be at the level of Assistant, Associate or Full Professor in its Transportation Program, anticipated start date January 2017. Click here for more information.
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