The precast concrete industry offers specifiers durable, high quality products that can be customized to meet many needs. But in certain situations, specifications need to be adjusted to recognize the inherent benefits of precast products and the changing role they are playing.

This was the case in Georgia regarding its specification for noise barriers, which created an opportunity for the industry, association and customer to work together to the benefit of all.

The process began with a call from Gene Drake, P.E., vice president/regional GM with Oldcastle Precast to Rich Krolewski, director of certification and regulatory services at NPCA. Drake and other area precasters have a good working relationship with surrounding Departments of Transportation but needed assistance to achieve the specification change.

Krolewski worked with Georgia Department of Transportation officials including Monica Flournoy, P.E., state materials engineer, to review specifications and make changes where it made sense for the state and its taxpayers.

“NPCA is a partner to GDOT,” Flournoy said. “We truly have to work together to deliver this robust program that GDOT has and we will continue to seek input from industry on any standard or supplemental specification change through the Georgia Partnership for Transportation Quality process. GDOT’s leadership is focused on quality and that is pushed down through the ranks.”

The revised Noise Barrier Policy, as well as an update to the noise barrier section of the GDOT’s Design Policy Manual, now specify precast concrete.

“I can’t thank you enough for your efforts to help support precast specifications,” Drake said. “At times, it takes the association to weigh in and close the deal. Your recent efforts were particularly successful in highlighting the benefits that the precast concrete industry offers over other material options.

“We look forward to working closely with you in the future on other specification changes that will help both our industry and the taxpayers.”