Roadway safety is an important aspect of all transportation facilities. With operation and maintenance becoming contracted roles under public-private partnerships (PPP), it is expected that safety rates will improve beyond those experienced in traditional delivery. The international experience shows that PPPs experienced mechanisms designed to provide safer roads. In the United States, PPP is gaining momentum and several states initiated PPP projects. While studies show the potential of PPPs for improving cost efficiency and expediting the delivery time, few researches investigated the correlation between PPP and roadway safety. To fill the gap, this study investigated seventeen PPP projects through content analysis of their agreement and procurement documents. The findings show that PPP projects were lacking further consideration toward safety beyond what is normally available in traditional delivery. Safety was an objective in most (76%) of the projects, however, without direct mechanisms to implement such objective. Around half of the projects have mentioned safety as part of proposal evaluation but only two projects have assigned points/weights in the evaluation. None of the projects provided for a direct link between the compensation to the achievement of improvements in the safety rates. Generally, PPPs are meant to provide public agencies with means to achieve particular objectives. It is recommended to use the particulars of PPPs in performance measures and payment mechanisms to enforce roadway safety in highways infrastructure.
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