Office of Highway Development

The State Highway Administration (SHA) Office of Highway Development (OHD) designs most State and federal roadways in Maryland. Our seven divisions work closely to improve the safety and functionality of Maryland's highway system, engineering solutions that integrate accessibility, mobility, and asset preservation for a greener environment and economic improvements to Maryland's communities.   

OHD Divisions are:

Highway Design Division

The Highway Design Division (HDD) designs transportation projects varying in size from shared use paths to major interchange projects.  HDD employs in-house design staff, on-site project management consultants and consultant firms for design and project management.  HDD is also responsible for the budgetary management of the Major Projects Programs and serves as the lead design division. They coordinate SHA support divisions and the needs of local communities.  HDD employs teams of expert project managers and licensed engineers to provide design and project management services to other divisions within OHD and provides utility and construction engineering review and support for OHD projects.

Engineering Resources Division

The Engineering Resources Division (ERD) manages OHD architectural and engineering (A/E) contracts and the Administrative and General (A&G) budget. They also advertise construction projects, perform non-project procurements and oversee OHD’s fixed assets and sensitive items. The division provides direction and expertise to OHD and other engineering offices that may use statewide contracts to complete engineering design and management.

Design Technical Services Division

The Design Technical Services Division (DTSD) provides subject matter expertise and design quality assurance for AASHTO, ADA / Bicycle, Roadside / Traffic Barrier, Standard Details, and Specifications for Construction and Materials.

Highway Hydraulics Division

The Highway Hydraulics Division (HHD) provides engineering support and design services for drainage, stormwater management (SWM), erosion and sediment control (E&S), stream stabilization/restoration, small stream crossings/culvert design and other water resource activities for major highway projects. HHD coordinates approvals for National Pollutant Discharge Elimination Systems permits for construction activities for all SHA projects. In addition, HHD supports the Wetland and Waterways Permit process by preparing Joint Permit Applications. HHD maintains the SHA drainage asset and SWM facility and Dam inventory databases. It performs inspections, drainage investigations, and storm drain outfall and stream channel assessments to assure proper functionality of all drainage and SWM assets. HHD manages the Drainage Improvement Fund and implements drainage improvement projects, stormwater remedial activities, and water quality improvement projects.

Innovative Contracting Division

The Innovative Contracting Division (ICD) implements new processes and supports SHA in several areas, including alternative project delivery, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the SHA Bicycle Program, and construction engineering. ICD is responsible for the planning, implementation and coordination of the alternative project delivery program and developing new policies & best practices for innovative contracting methods, such as design-build and construction management at risk.   

ICD advises about design, policy, and project schedule in the management of these projects within OHD, as well as in other SHA offices.    

ICD is responsible for overseeing the design, developing construction contracts, and managing the capital program budget for the following funds:

  • Sidewalk Reconstruction for Pedestrian Access
  • New Sidewalk Construction for Pedestrian Access
  • Bicycle Retrofit

Plats and Surveys Division

The Plats and Surveys Division (PSD) plays a key role in planning, design, and construction at SHA and other State agencies. Early and continuous access to field survey information and property boundary information is the foundation for any project. PSD uses state-of-the-art technology, such as aerial photogrammetry, Global Positioning System (GPS), Real Time Kinematic (RTK) and robotic survey equipment to ensure the quality, accuracy, and speed with which information is obtained and delivered.

The primary functions of PSD are:

  • Identification of topographic features and determination of property boundaries
  • Development of base mapping used for all project development
  • Preparation of plats used for the acquisition and disposal of property

These functional elements influence the design and cost of projects. The cadastral and topographic surveys developed by PSD are essential elements in the development of all projects managed by SHA.  As the custodian of field survey information, PSD maintains an up-to-date inventory of existing survey data for use by the private and public land surveying and civil engineering communities statewide. 

Plan Review Division

The Plan Review Division (PRD) reviews and issues permits for stormwater and sediment control in accordance with Code of Maryland 26.17.01 and 26.17.02 under delegated authority from the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE).

PRD’s main function is to review and provide approvals for all SHA projects and ensure compliance with State laws, regulations, and MDE requirements in accordance with this delegated authority.  This gives PRD direct control of review priorities, providing a new tool to reduce delays and costs while ensuring desired environmental outcomes and improving customer service. This delegation enables SHA to demonstrate environmental commitment through improved predictability for securing stormwater and erosion/sediment control approvals for projects, and ultimately providing an improved program delivery.

Contact the Office of Highway Development at 1-888-228-6971