360 camera

Olmsted County's 360-degree camera for culvert
inspection won second prize in Minnesota's 2019 competition.

Have you or one of your co-workers recently built an innovative gadget or developed an improved way to do a job? Now is the time to show off your creativity and help other agencies solve problems by submitting an entry to the Minnesota Build a Better Mousetrap Competition!

Your entry can be anything from the development of tools or gadgets to equipment modifications to processes that increase safety, improve efficiency, reduce costs, or improve the quality of transportation. The purpose of this competition is to collect and disseminate real-world examples of best practices, tips from the field, and assist in the transfer of technology.

The Minnesota competition is sponsored by the Minnesota Local Road Research Board and administered by Minnesota LTAP.

Submit an Entry

award presentation

Olmsted County Public Works took first place in the Inspection
and Data Collection category at the 2019 National LTAP Build
a Better Mousetrap Competition. Stephanie Malinoff and
Katherine Stanley of MN LTAP accepted the award on
behalf of Olmsted County.

To enter, please complete the entry form (DOCX) and submit it to sell0146@umn.edu by May 15, 2021. You're also encouraged (but not required) to submit photos and a video clip that showcase your project along with your entry form. Videos do not need to be professionally produced; clips shot with a smartphone or tablet are welcome!

  • Consider submitting a project in any of these categories:Maintenance: tools, equipment fabrication, and methods (e.g., lifters, reachers, modifications, assembly)
  • Transportation facilities improvements (e.g., storage, access, operations, services)
  • Inspection and data collection (e.g., automated/remote means, testing, time)
  • Asset management techniques (e.g., GIS, mapping, decision-support systems)

Entries will be judged using the criteria of cost savings, benefits to the community and/or agency, ingenuity, transferability to others, and effectiveness. We'll pick a state winner, who will be recognized in the Minnesota LTAP Technology Exchange newsletter and receive a prize.

The winning entry will be automatically submitted to the national competition, where you'll compete for more fantastic prizes—and bragging rights! Winners will be announced at the annual LTAP/TTAP National Conference.

More Information

With questions about the competition or for more information, please contact Katherine Stanley at sell0146@umn.edu or 612-626-1023.

Previous Winners

See information about previous winners of the Minnesota mousetrap competition.

National Competition

The Build a Better Mousetrap National Competition highlights innovative solutions to everyday problems and issues that local and tribal transportation workers encounter. They can range from the development of tools or equipment modifications to processes that increase safety, reduce cost, and improve efficiency and the overall quality of transportation. Visit the national competition web page to learn about other innovations across the country and see examples of previous years' winning projects.