Frontier Parkway is an important thoroughfare that runs along the border between the Town of Prosper and the City of Celina, located in Collin County, Texas and part of the Dallas metro area. The entire region is experiencing a tremendous amount of growth and the State, the regional planning organization, Collin County, the Town of Prosper and the City of Celina are working hard to keep pace to build a strong foundation for long-term growth and prosperity with forward thinking plans for better transit throughout.
Hulon Webb, the Town of Prosper’s Director of Engineering Services, needed the help of visuals to educate the public on the future state of Frontier Parkway, an interlocal public infrastructure project sponsored by the Town of Prosper, the City of Celina, and Collin County to upgrade and expand the roadway to meet the needs of the area’s rapidly developing population and economy.
Mr. Webb initially engaged RDV to produce a simple before-and-after 3D flyover video clip that would present the proposed changes to help educate the public. However, after learning more about RDV’s unique approach to visualization, Mr. Webb realized he had discovered a better way to produce more interesting and meaningful visualizations.
Before/After – Frontier Parkway
The two-mile section of Frontier Parkway between the Dallas North Tollway and Preston Road was originally built as a simple two-lane facility through an undeveloped area with an at-grade crossing of the BNSF Railroad main line. Population growth had resulted in a new elementary school, a new high school with a major football stadium, several residential subdivisions, and other businesses. The original Parkway was wholly inadequate for current and future traffic demands, and the proposed upgrades would widen the road to four lanes with wide raised medians, left turn lanes, curbs-and-gutters, sidewalks, and a grade separation over the BNSF railroad tracks.
Mr. Webb had been impressed by RDV 3D visualizations he had seen for a similar project. When the Frontier Parkway project began to take shape the team initiated discussions regarding strategies for educating the public on the need for the project, how it would progress, and how it would impact traffic both during and after construction. Mr. Webb wasted no time in instructing Birkhoff, Hendricks, & Carter, the prime engineering consultant, to engage with RDV.
RDV proceeded to build a 3D model of the Frontier Parkway project using the existing engineering design and produced a tiled before-and-after flyover visualization video based on the model. This video was used by the County Commissioner in two public hearings and then posted to both the Town of Prosper and Celina websites. The visualization was well-received by Mr. Webb, the entire project team, and the public which, as indicated by initial feedback, is on board with the project.
Tiled Before/After Flyover Visualization Video
The true magic happened when Mr. Webb realized he could use the living 3D document to communicate additional aspects of the project at different stages of construction. He needed a way to educate the public in advance of the traffic impacts during construction and the detours that would be needed. In particular he needed a way to make it clear that although the railroad overpass bridge might appear to be complete in the later stages, it would still need additional work before it could be used for traffic.