Site notes: Photo uploads hopefully fixed; NBI 2011 released
Thursday, January 26, 2012
I think I've tracked down the source of the sporadic problems with photo uploads. A couple people had trouble uploading photos for their TRUSS Awards nominations, so I've extended the deadline for nominations until Jan. 31. Like last year, the sheer number of entries will make it hard to choose the winners.
In other news, the Federal Highway Administration has released the 2011 edition of the National Bridge Inventory.
They've made two versions available: the old fixed-width ASCII format and a new comma-delimited format. The old format can be processed using
my OVERPASS program. I haven't tackled trying to read the new format. Unfortunately, it appears
that the wrong ZIP file containing all of the states was uploaded (it's the new format even though it's labeled as the old format). I had to
download all of the states separately.
I've uploaded the new inspection data throughout the website. The next challenge is tracking down those bridges that appeared in the 2010
edition, but disappeared in the 2011 edition -- this means they were probably demolished.
Something is SEVERELY wrong with this 2011 NBI. The NBI Structure numbers for Pennsylvania and Michigan and maybe other (all?) states no longer list State bridge numbers. The Structure number field appears to just have a sequential list of numbers. That means that the NBI numbers listed here on Bridgehunter will not match up with these new useless numbers. I don't know if this is an error on FHWA's part or what the situation is. Folks adding bridges to BridgeHunter should be aware of this situation since if you relied on the old numbers to find bridges in the NBI it will no longer help you.
James, you won't have to worry about tracking down the bridges in the NBI 2011 edition. I've been using Bing to track down some of the bridges in Iowa and about a third of them have disappeared, the majority were in western Iowa where the flooding was going on this past year. There will be some more info coming from my end.