The City of Irving is taking bold steps to revolutionize its roadway maintenance efforts through the launch of the NEXCO pilot program, a cutting-edge initiative set to transform the city's approach to road surface evaluation and maintenance strategies. Spearheaded by the Traffic and Transportation/Street Department, this forward-thinking program is already making waves after its spring 2023 debut.
The NEXCO program, an acronym for Next-Generation Evaluation of Xemplary Road Conditions, harnesses the power of advanced computer algorithms to analyze roadway images and determine road surface conditions. This technological leap promises to streamline the evaluation process, enabling the city to allocate resources more effectively while adopting cost-efficient maintenance techniques.
City officials underscore that NEXCO is a natural evolution of the department's commitment to innovation. Since the launch of a citywide pavement assessment initiative in 2014, which assessed the pavement condition index for over 1,400 lane-miles of Irving's roadways, substantial progress has been made. Notably, 72 miles of streets have been significantly upgraded under the department's Road to the Future program, a comprehensive endeavor that also encompasses the Summer Overlay Program.
Recognizing the growing challenges posed by escalating maintenance and supply costs, the NEXCO pilot program emerges as a beacon of strategic resource management. The program's primary focus lies in the application of innovative methods such as pavement crack sealing, pavement rejuvenation, and pressure paving. Through the program's high-resolution camera, an entire road system is comprehensively recorded, and the resulting visual data is analyzed by the computer program. This analysis discerns cracks in the road's surface, varying in width and depth. Subsequently, the department selects from a trio of methodologies to effectively seal the road, ensuring water does not infiltrate the cracks and compromise the pavement's integrity.
One of the most remarkable aspects of the NEXCO program is its potential to diminish the necessity for extensive full-panel replacements, thereby championing a cost-effective approach to maintenance. This transformative shift aims to create smoother and safer driving experiences, ultimately benefitting both commuters and the city as a whole.
To date, the NEXCO program has concentrated its efforts on evaluating roadways situated south of SH 183. As it progresses, the program's scope is set to expand, encompassing the assessment of city streets stretching from SH 183 to SH 161, and eventually covering the expanse north of SH 161. With a projected duration spanning until 2025, the pilot program is poised to not only refine and optimize the city's maintenance practices but also serve as a model for other municipalities aspiring to enhance their own road infrastructure.