The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at UIUC boasts one of the largest university transportation programs in the world, with 11 tenure-track faculty and 2 full-time researchers as well as over 29 courses focused on transportation. The department offers B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees with a specialization in transportation engineering. Our faculty specialize in three sub-groups: Facilities, Rail and Systems, described below.


The facilities sub-group focuses on the pavements and other built infrastructure necessary to keep goods and people moving. The group’s research interests include smart and sustainable pavement technology, mechanics and behavior of asphalt and concrete materials, novel pavement materials, testing and modeling of aggregates and subgrade soils, and life cycle analysis. This research Much of this research takes place at the Advanced Transportation Research and Engineering Laboratory (ATREL), a 60,000 square foot facility.


The rail sub-group faculty are global leaders in practical and theoretical research advancing the field in a broad range of important and timely railroad and rail transit engineering and transportation topics. Advanced research investigations are underway in railway safetysystems, and infrastructure, addressing dozens of topics that are essential to maintaining the safety, efficiency, reliability, sustainability and resiliency of railroad freight and passenger transportation.

This research takes place under the auspices of the Rail Transportation and Engineering Center (RailTEC), which provides laboratory space, equipment, academic and professional education, and hosts the William Hay Railroad Engineering Seminar.


The transportation systems sub-group develops and applies technological and scientific principles to the planning, design, operation, and management of all modes of transportation. The goals are to provide safe, secure, efficient, comfortable, economical, and environmentally-compatible movement of people and goods.