Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Guillermo F. Salazar, Advisor

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Malcolm H. Ray, Committee Member

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Leonard D. Albano, Committee Member

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Fred Hart, Department Head




Although Value Engineering (VE) studies are mandated by the Federal Highway Administration for large ($25 million or more) federal-aid highway projects, many state Departments of Transportation do not conduct voluntary VE studies on smaller projects. Those who have done so have seen project improvements and savings as a result. The success of the existing voluntary VE programs indicates that VE application to small transportation projects represents a significant opportunity for savings. The goal of this thesis work was to develop a methodology for conducting VE studies on small transportation projects that would make efficient use of available personnel and require little VE training. The author examined the results and procedures of several DOT VE programs, including some that conduct studies on projects as small as $1 million. The analyses revealed sources of past savings, trends and common methods in VE studies, and procedures and forms that are best suited to the types of project under study. Based on the research and analyses, the author developed a VE study methodology that is tailored to small transportation projects, including a workbook and both general and specific guidelines. This report proposes an approach to VE on small transportation projects using this methodology, which is characterized by conformance with accepted VE practice and FHWA guidelines, efficient use of personnel, and ease of use. In particular, these recommendations are intended for use by any state DOT with an existing but limited VE program, such as MassHighway, which currently conducts only mandated studies.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Degree Name



Civil & Environmental Engineering

Project Type


Date Accepted





highway, transportation, DOT, value engineering, Value analysis (Cost control), Transportation engineering, Transportation, Cost of operation