There’s a New Surveyor in Fayetteville: It’s a Specially-Outfitted Van

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A white tricked-out van, with beacon lights on top, is cruising the streets of Fayetteville.

But, why?

According to the City of Fayetteville, the specialized van, known as a Laser Road Surface Tester (LRST), is measuring and performing an analysis of the city’s street pavement roughness, rutting, cracking, and sidewalk conditions.

In addition, the LRST is also collecting right-of-way data using four digital video cameras mounted inside the van and Global Positioning Satellites (GPS) lasers.

It takes three field technicians to operate the van — that travels about 15 miles per hour.

The information gathered is to help the city with logistics during transportation projects, according to the city’s engineering division.

The van will survey city roads through March 21, according to the city, and the entire project will be complected by the spring of 2019.

“This is the first time the city has used this measure for surveying,” said Brown, “it may be a first in northwest Arkansas.”

The data retrieved from the van will allow the city to have a comprehensive pavement and sidewalk management plan — one that can be used for three to five years, according to Brown.

Fayetteville’s City Council approved a contract with Infrastructure Management Services (IMS) in 2018 for $206,159, said City Engineer Chris Brown.

This is the second phase of surveying by IMS.  In November 2018, IMS techs did deflection testing. “which measured the structural condition of the pavement and its ability to carry traffic loads (weight, speed, number of vehicles,” according to the city’s news release.

Facebook comments from people who have heard about the van have been mostly humorous, for example: 

Drive it down Mt. Comfort traffic at 7:30 a.m., it can go as slow as it wants!

Send them down Huntsville Rd., between M.L.K. and downtown.  The stretch from Willow St. to Wood St. will rattle your jaw!

PLEASE loan it to Washington County … go down Highland Church Road!

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