The APWA national, chapter, DCS and self-assessment websites will be down for system maintenance and upgrades from 11:00pm central time Friday, August 29th to approximately 12:00am central time, Saturday August 30th.

APWA PUBLIC WORKS PROJECTS OF THE YEAR

Project of the Year: Structures Less Than $2 Million

River Walk Park Project

Managing Agency: City of San Antonio, Texas

Primary Contractor: Winters Construction, Inc.

Primary Consultant: 3D/International

Nominated By: Texas Chapter

San Antonio's River Walk draws visitors from around the globe to cruise in barges or stroll along its banks shopping, dining, and observing nature seventeen feet below the downtown streetscape. The River Walk Park Project creates an accessible path between street and river levels and around a barrier that has for decades impeded circulation and development at the south bend of the River Walk. While opening up the site to pedestrians, the city in partnership with the San Antonio Water System (SAWS) created a more secure compound for sensitive water pumping and treatment operations. The heavy flow of pedestrians, automobile and boat traffic could not be unduly hindered by construction of improvements, while new developments just west of the site demanded improved circulation.

The study phase of this project involved selection of a route for a new fully accessible pathway through or around the SAWS site. The consensus route selected meanders through landscaping along the riverbank, slowly rises to access the street level park and circumnavigates a monumental water tank at the extreme southeast corner of the site. It briefly passes behind the Arneson River Theater stage backdrop, past an art fence enclosure around pump #4, and descends back to river level behind the historic Hertzberg Circus Museum.

Construction at this busy corner of the river maintained and protected the circulation of the river, barges, street traffic and pedestrians along the River Walk and at street level. It accommodated the ongoing operations of the SAWS pump station as well as the Arneson River Theater open-air performances near the southeast corner of the site. The Yanaguana barge operations stayed operational throughout the construction.

Construction was accomplished with minimal interruption of ongoing activity by all the stakeholders and downtown visitors. Challenges included keeping the street and river level pedestrian routes open and safe; protect ongoing barge traffic and briefly relocate river barge ticket and loading operations with way-finding signage to their new location; and avoid lane closures to keep bus stop traffic operational during the day. The contractor coordinated with major switchgear renovations and relocations by City Public Service and with SAWS, avoided interruption of utility service, and avoided damaging a maze of underground utilities throughout the site.

Weekly safety meetings were held that focused on the special safety concerns of the project. The contractor lost no man-hours to injury out of 10,049 hours worked.

Project of the Year: Structures $2-$10 Million

South Natomas Community Center and Library

Managing Agency: City of Sacramento, California

Primary Contractor: Turner Construction Company

Primary Consultant: BSA Architects

Nominated By: Sacramento Chapter

In 1998 the City of Sacramento obtained funding to build Phase 1 of the South Natomas community center and library. The community center, library, and infrastructure for future phases were constructed at a cost of $7 million. Located on approximately 25 acres of flat, undeveloped land in the South Natomas area of the city, the bare site had laid dormant while the surrounding residential area was created from former farmlands. Phase 2 of the project will include a 10,000 square foot multipurpose facility and the full development of a park on the remaining land.

The community center and library are strategically placed at the center of the site and set back from the street for prominence, safety, and traffic purposes. In keeping with the agricultural theme mandated by the community, the one-story buildings are composed of simple, additive forms reminiscent of barns and sheds with pitched roofs. The large glazed front entrances, protected by deep overhangs and bracketed projection canopies, face a central landscaped vehicular turnaround. To strengthen the "barn and shed" look, the finish materials include a concrete tile roof, and painted board and batten siding and trim. Parking spaces are strategically located around the structures for easy access to the buildings and future park activities.

The community center is a 17,500 square foot building designed around a long linear form with other pitched roof structures branching off and completing the intended concept. The roof at the lobby recedes over a stepped plan form to create views across the courtyard and toward the park. The center features an expansive lobby, game room, arts and crafts room, dance/gymnastics/martial arts room, two meeting rooms, computer room, wellness center, Tiny Tot room and staff offices.

The 13,500 square foot L-shaped library is located to the left of the community center and is graced with a raised clerestory marking the entrance and lobby space within. The main area, with its high arched ceiling suggesting a reverence for literature and knowledge, faces a future rose garden near the pond—further adding to a sense of peace and tranquility. The public meeting room is highlighted by a shed dormer and opens directly onto the courtyard.

Construction was completed on October 2, 2001, weeks ahead of the original schedule. With the contractor's commitment to safety, the project had a zero "Lost Time Incident Rate" compared to the national average of 3.9.

Project of the Year: Structures More Than $10 Million

The Joe Serna, Jr. California Environmental Protection Agency Headquarters Building

Managing Agency: City of Sacramento, California

Primary Contractor: Turner Construction Company

Primary Consultant: Thomas Properties Group

Nominated By: Sacramento Chapter

The Joe Serna, Jr. California Environmental Protection Agency Headquarters Building is an outstanding example of how individuals working together can create one of the most innovative and sophisticated "green" buildings in the country. From the obvious, easy to recognize energy efficiencies, to the subtle, highly sustainable features, this building surpassed the expectations of all involved. What is truly amazing is that the building exceeded California's Title 24 energy efficiency standards by 36 percent while coming in well below a budget that did not include "green" elements. The result is a project consistent with Cal EPA's mission of "preserving and protecting the environment."

The 25-story, 950,000 gross square foot building occupies one full city block at 1001 I Street located directly across the street from Sacramento's historic City Hall and town square, Cesar Chavez Plaza. The building was constructed in 30 months with a construction budget of $115.7 million.

The first three floors of the building form a classical base element of granite and glass. The upper office floors are clad in articulated concrete panels inset with green glass windows, and 500 LED lights are at the glass screen on top of the tower. The massing of the building was deliberately set back from the civic center so as not to detract from the historic Sacramento City Hall building, and thus created additional daylight for the 26,000 square foot courtyard facing Cesar Chavez Plaza. A walk-through "gateway" portal is positioned at the corner to welcome visitors to the courtyard and the building. Amenities include a childcare center, a 300-seat auditorium, two multi-purpose hearing rooms, a café servery, recreation and exercise facilities, and 150 parking spaces—for bicycles, not cars.

The building serves as the headquarters for the California Environmental Protection Agency and is now home to 3,000 employees who were previously scattered in offices throughout the county. By consolidating its workforce Cal EPA improved its efficiency on behalf of California taxpayers.

For Cal EPA, the numerous energy-efficiency and environmental sustainable design features incorporated into the building design make it one of the most pioneering "Green Building" projects in the country, and has set a standard for others to emulate. From the simple (interior signage made from sunflower seeds) to the complex (an HVAC system providing fresh air), the Cal EPA building is packed with environmental amenities you can see, breathe, and touch.

Project of the Year: Environment Less Than $2 Million

Harrison Landfill Soil Vapor Extraction and Air Injection Remedial System and Groundwater Remedial System

Managing Agency: City of Tucson, Arizona, Environmental Management Division

Primary Contractor: Hydro Geo Chem, Inc.

Primary Consultant: S.A.S. Industrial Maintenance Corporation

Nominated By: Arizona Chapter

The Harrison Road Landfill (HLF) was closed on April 1, 1997. During its operation, many tons of residential and commercial wastes were dumped in the unlined former gravel pit. Over the years, hazardous chemicals present in the landfill refuse migrated downward and made contact with slow-moving groundwater beneath the site. As a result, there currently exists a plume of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) over one-quarter of a mile in length extending northwest from the landfill boundary. Site investigations revealed that the source of the contamination was not liquid-phase VOCs migrating downward, as was commonly thought, but a more mobile source of contamination: VOCs in the vapor phase.

Moving to prevent further and potentially more costly groundwater contamination by the vapor-phase chemicals, the Environmental Management Division of the City of Tucson and their consultants developed, designed, and implemented innovative remedial technologies targeted to remove this source of contamination while containing and cleaning up the existing VOC plume in groundwater. The innovative technologies include an SVE/AI system for removing the VOC source in the vadose zone beneath refuse and a groundwater pump-and-treat bio-enhancing (PT/BE) system for containment and cleanup of VOCs in groundwater.

The SVE/AI system with approximately 600- to 900-foot well spacing consists of an air injection (AI) well surrounded by three soil vapor extraction (SVE) wells that are screened below the refuse and above the water table. While clean air is injected in the center, extraction wells remove contaminated soil gas at the perimeter. The system has created a cushion of clean soil gas that prevents additional dissolution of vapor-phase VOCs into groundwater, and removes VOCs from the groundwater by volatilization.

The groundwater VOC contamination caused by landfill vapor migration has been contained and cleaned up using an innovative groundwater PT/BE system. The main difference between a traditional pump-and-treat system and the PT/BE system used at HLF is the promotion or bio-enhancement of the reductive dehalogenation processes acting on VOC in groundwater. The PT/BE system achieves these reductive conditions with the addition of nutrients and electron donors to the cleaned water prior to injecting it into the contaminated aquifer.

The SVE/AI system is so successful and effective for VOC source removal in the vadose zone that similar systems have been installed at two other closed Tucson landfills, and one is under design and will be installed at Tucson's only active landfill for VOC removal in the vadose zone.

Project of the Year: Environment $2-$10 Million

Sparks Marina Park

Managing Agency: City of Sparks, Nevada

Primary Contractor: T.W. Construction Company

Primary Consultant: EDAW Inc.

Nominated By: Nevada Chapter

The Sparks Marina Park is a multi-use recreational facility with the main element being an 80-acre, 1.7 billion gallon lake. The park includes two gazebos, two large sand beaches with amenities, 24,000 square feet of rockery walls and a twelve-foot wide concrete path that circles the park. The park has three public buildings including an administration building with restrooms and showers, a concession building and another restroom building that includes a fish cleaning station. The lake is a maximum 120-foot deep coldwater lake, which has proven to be a very good habitat for fish including rainbow and brown trout. Additional park amenities include a fishing pier, two playground areas, numerous picnic areas and sand volleyball courts. The park includes extensive landscaping including over 10 acres of sod, 500 trees and 4,000 shrubs, perennials and seasonal plants.

The lake was originally a quarry entitled "Helm's Pit" which the City of Sparks acquired in 1992. Upon acquiring the "pit," the City began planning for its ultimate conversion into a park.

The project faced many difficult construction obstacles. The combination of existing steep, unstable slopes up to 120 feet in height with nearby structures, including buildings, roadways and parking lots made the mass grading work difficult. The slopes up to vertical in nature were laid back to inclinations ranging from 3:1 to 10:1 (H:V). In addition, due to contaminants that had been discovered seeping into the quarry from the quarry slopes, environmental mitigation always had to be involved whenever contaminated soil was discovered.

The Sparks Marina Park satisfies many community needs including the need for a multi-use recreational facility that is totally free to the public. There is no fee for swimming, fishing or boating at the Marina and as with all of Sparks there is no charge for parking. Another major community need that was satisfied is the park acting as the keystone for the development of southeast Sparks and adding to the tax revenue generated for the City which is planned to be a source of funding for future redevelopment projects throughout the City.

The Sparks Marina Lake has been designed to become an integral part of the flood control system of the City of Sparks. One of the main functions of the newly created Marina Lake is to act as a giant detention facility for a significant portion of eastern Sparks. The lake has the capacity to detain floodwaters from the adjacent contributing drainage area well in excess of the 100-year flood event.

Project of the Year: Environment More Than $10 Million

The Boston Harbor Project

Managing Agency: Massachusetts Water Resources Authority

Primary Contractors: Modern Continental Construction Co.; Kiewit/Atkinson/Kenny JV; J.F. White Contracting Co./PKF Mark III JV; Jay Cashman, Inc.; Perini/Eastern JV; Clark Construction Group; Barletta Engineering; Walsh Construction of Illinois

Primary Consultants: Earth Tech, Inc.; Stone & Webster, Inc.; Metcalf & Eddy; Malcolm Pirnie, Inc.; Camp Dresser & McKee, Inc.

Nominated By: Massachusetts Water Resources Authority

The Boston Harbor Project is one of the largest wastewater treatment projects ever built in the United States. Built under the constraints of a federal court order, the $3.6-billion construction project took nearly 12 years to complete. The project was extremely complex. The stacked primary and secondary sewage treatment plant is located on a small island in Boston Harbor. A 5-mile tunnel connects the smaller headworks facility on Nut Island to the wastewater treatment plant on Deer Island. The outfall tunnel, 25 feet in diameter—the longest single entry/exit tunnel in the world—now extends 9.5 miles into the ocean. The plant had to be built in stages as the old plant was replaced and phased out, and new facilities were added. The system provides primary and secondary treatment of up to 1.3 billion gallons of wastewater per day for the entire metropolitan Boston area.

The project site was very confined. There was no space on-site to produce the 12 egg-shaped steel sludge digesters that weigh 650 tons each, and handle all the solids and residuals skimmed from the wastewater. Eight of the tanks were fabricated off-site and floated to the island on special oceangoing barges. Once there, a giant crane lifted the 14-story high eggs onto their pile-supported foundations. Four of the digesters had to be partially assembled off-site and floated to the island in major pieces for final assembly. In addition, support buildings had to be shoehorned into the scant available space to provide homes for warehousing, maintenance, administration, laboratory, and operations. The support buildings were a combination of concrete and steel structural systems with brick veneer as a finish material.

The plant's 12 distinctive egg-shaped sludge digesters are now a Boston landmark. The plant includes two pumping stations, steam and electric power generators, and ancillary facilities. Solids are thickened and the remaining liquid disinfected and dechlorinated. More than a million linear feet of pipes were laid—enough to extend from Boston to New York City—to convey the liquids and residue during the treatment process.

Over 18,000 men and women worked on the project for over 36 million hours. They were able to come reasonably close to achieving the tight court-imposed time deadline, but they also stayed well within budget, completing the project at $500 million less than the estimated $4.1 billion cost.

Project of the Year: Disaster or Emergency Construction/Repair Less Than $2 Million

18th Street Bridge Expressway-Collision Damage, Stabilization and Repairs

Managing Agency: Kansas Department of Transportation, Bureau of Design

Primary Contractor: APAC - Kansas Wilkerson - Maxwell Branch

Primary Consultant: HNTB Corporation

Nominated By: Kansas City Metro Chapter

The 18th Street Expressway Bridge over the Kansas River and a Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway diesel shop yard, is a major arterial in the Kansas City metropolitan area. On October 8, 2000, several westbound BNSF freight cars loaded with cement derailed and knocked down the east column of Pier 3 below the southbound lanes of the south approach bridge. As the east column fell, it impacted the west column. The top of the west column shifted about two feet westward, causing the west girder to fall off its steel rocker bearing and to bear directly on the east edge of the west column top. With the east column gone and the west column displaced, the east and west girders sagged noticeably at Pier 3.

The design-build team of APAC Kansas and HNTB Corporation was selected by the Kansas Department of Transportation to make fast-track repairs. These services included damage assessment inspection, structural stability analysis, pier design, falsework installation, superstructure jacking operations, structural steel heat straightening, weld repairs, and pier reconstruction. The facility was re-opened to traffic on January 19, 2001 only 15 weeks after the accident.

The stabilization and repair of the 18th Street Expressway bridge was a challenging project, but by all measures was a successful undertaking. Several key points to this success include:

  • The project was completed with no lost time or OSHA recordable accidents.
  • Initial stabilization efforts were completed in a timely manner, preventing the potential collapse of the structure.
  • The structure was repaired while substantially in position, without demolition and reconstruction of the bridge deck. 17,000 cars that travel the southbound route daily were diverted quickly and safely to restore traffic flow.
  • The project was opened to traffic nearly two weeks prior to the originally anticipated date.
Contributing to the successful completion of this project was the procurement method used by KDOT on the project. The use of a modified design/build agreement permitted the development of a tight-knit repair "team," permitting construction to proceed without delay, one step behind design. In addition, the design/build arrangement and teaming approach to the project led to innovations in the repair and rehabilitation of the structure that might not have otherwise been considered in the more traditional procurement approaches.

Project of the Year: Disaster or Emergency Construction/Repair $2-$10 Million

"Super Storm" Flood Mitigation Improvements

Managing Agency: City of Eagan, Minnesota

Primary Contractor: Barbarosa and Sons, Inc.

Primary Consultant: Bonestroo, Rosene, Anderlik and Associates

Nominated By: City of Eagan, Minnesota

The City of Eagan is a second-ring suburb of Minneapolis/St. Paul. Heavy rains fell on portions of the Twin Cities' south Metro area during the weekend of July 7-10, 2000. The southern portion of the City was at the center of the unusually severe precipitation event. The State Climatology Office documented rainfall amounts of over 11 inches in southeastern Eagan (highest amount ever for the City of Eagan) over this period.

The resulting runoff significantly exceeded the design capacity of the storm drainage system in the affected areas. In the midst of emergency response, including Public Works disaster cleanup service delivery, many weeks of continued emergency response to migrating high pond levels throughout the system followed. Coinciding with these efforts, Eagan Public Works officials began immediately to investigate stormwater system effectiveness, defining problem areas, and put into place a process for custom stabilization and recovery.

In less than eight months, over 30 meetings were held with residents, and preliminary designs were completed to resolve problems in 50 identified impacted areas. The complex technical analysis required frequent interaction with the affected, emotionally charged public, resolution of project funding issues, preparation of detailed design and bid documents, securing of requisite easements at no cost, and meeting numerous other challenges—all under a compressed time frame—resulting in the approval of over $5 million in contracts to construct recommended improvements while maintaining normal service delivery for the entire community.

The City of Eagan Public Works staff and Engineering Consultant support networks in this project operated very effectively under severely adverse conditions. The July 2000 event placed the City in a situation over which they had no control. The staff had to deal with the combination of the technical engineering response, the Public Works/Operations disaster/emergency response and services delivery, and the significant public relations aspect of this event in an emotionally "super-charged" customer response mode. And, as everyone who is familiar with public sector engineering/public works services delivery can understand, all the other already daunting day-to-day responsibilities continued to require attention and resources.

Not simply another sophisticated construction project, the flood mitigation effort in Eagan is an example of enormous dedication to everyday public works service delivery at the level necessary to respond to citizens in all situations.

Project of the Year: Disaster or Emergency Construction/Repair More Than $10 Million

Los Angeles County Drainage Area Project

Managing Agency: Los Angeles County Department of Public Works and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Primary Contractors: Greg J. Harris Construction; Cone Engineering; Thomas Land Clearing; Brutoco Engineering and Construction; Ortiz Enterprises; E. L. Yeager; Los Angeles Engineering; Reyes Construction; Kiewit Pacific; Milco Constructors; Plas-TAL Manufacturing Company; Macro-Z-Technology; J and J Engineering Services, Inc.; Precision Pipeline

Primary Consultants: Willdan; S.G. Knowles Engineering; EDM Services; Don Howard Engineers; HDR; U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; Los Angeles County Department of Public Works

Nominated By: Southern California Chapter

The construction of the Los Angeles County Drainage Area (LACDA) Project improvements alleviated severe flood overflow potential by increasing the flood-carrying capacity of the lower Los Angeles River (LAR), Rio Hondo Channel (RHC), and Compton Creek (CC). The LACDA Project consisted of raising the height of 21 miles of existing levees by building up earthen levee embankments or constructing parapet walls on top of the levee, modifying 24 bridges, improving recreational trails, and installing landscaping and trail rest stops. Innovative engineering, effective project management, sustained coordination between agencies, and considerable public outreach enabled the completion of the project five years ahead of schedule and 40 percent under budget (saving $150 million).

Because of the large project scope, the construction of LACDA Project improvements was broken down into manageable sized phases. In total there were 21 contracts, of which seven were for levee improvements and 14 for bridge modifications. A total of 24 bridges were modified with these 14 contracts. Design and construction of different phases often occurred simultaneously by different agencies.

Before work on each of the 21 phases began, a full-day partnering agreement workshop was held between the County, the U.S. Corps of Engineers, contractor, and subcontractors to lay out the groundwork for that phase. These workshops also promoted communication between all parties, ensuring that response time was rapid and resulting in better cooperation during construction. Safety, budget, quality of work, schedule, problem solving, and environmental issues were all addressed during the workshops.

Safety always came first throughout the construction of the project, which can be seen in the exceptional safety record. During construction of the LACDA Project improvements, there were only seven lost time injuries in 1,080,000 man-hours worked, or 0.006 injuries per 1,000 man-hours.

The LACDA Project was a success due to the extraordinary partnership set up among the managing agencies, public officials, and contractors involved in its completion. It involved careful planning to include environmental and community concerns and values in the design and construction procedures employed. Technical innovations involved in the project and the look and feel of the final outcome from the feasibility phase to construction were all considered. Throughout the six years of LACDA Project construction, the channel maintained its flood control function. During construction vehicular, railroad, and utility bridges remained operable as well. It was completed five years ahead of schedule at a total cost of $216 million, $150 million under budget.

Project of the Year: Historical Restoration/Preservation Less Than $2 Million

Rehabilitation of Bridge 37 - Forge Hill Road over Deer Creek

Managing Agency: Harford County, Maryland, Department of Public Works

Primary Contractor: MacFarlane Construction Limited

Primary Consultant: Kennedy, Porter and Associates

Nominated By: Harford County, Maryland, Department of Public Works

Bridge H-37 carries Forge Hill Road over Deer Creek and is located in Palmer State Park in Harford County, Maryland. The bridge consists of two 3-span continuous arch ribs each 210 feet long. The ribs are supported on piers and abutments founded on rock. Transverse beams are framed into the top of the ribs and together they support the bridge's floor and parapet. The structure consists of reinforced cast-in-place concrete members, except for the footings that are not reinforced. The overall width of the bridge is 25 feet and the clear roadway width is 19 feet.

The bridge's rehabilitation project started primarily to address concerns over the structure's concrete parapet that had become unsafe due to its advanced state of deterioration, but other areas of the bridge also needed to be repaired. Various alternatives, including total removal of the bridge, were considered, but Harford County elected to rehabilitate the structure because it provides access to the park, is adequate to serve its limited transportation function, and is a historic structure.

The bridge is eligible for the National Register of Historic Places and is a contributing resource to the Lower Deer Creek Valley Historic District, which is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Its construction was completed in 1911 at a cost of $10,000.

The largest and most expensive activity undertaken in the rehabilitation project was the removal and replacement of deteriorated concrete using dry mix shotcrete. To perform this task, the contractor first installed a temporary working platform to provide access to the work areas and to serve as part of the shield provided to prevent debris from falling into Deer Creek. Structural members were then restored to their original dimensions except that a minimum 1" cover over the reinforcing steel had to be provided. A total of 2,166 cubic feet of concrete was removed and replaced under this task.

To complete the project a new drainage system was provided and stone riprap was placed for scour protection, the exposed surface of the bridge was cleaned and stained, and numerous trees were planted. The total construction cost was $931,348, approximately 1% under budget.

The rehabilitation of the Forge Hill Road Bridge is an exemplary project. Not only because of the final results, but the effort that was put forth to work with the community, the State Park, and the historical society.

Project of the Year: Historical Restoration/Preservation $2-$10 Million

Ford Street Bridge Rehabilitation

Managing Agency: City of Rochester, New York, Department of Environmental Services

Primary Contractor: The Pike Company, Inc.

Primary Consultant: Bergmann Associates

Nominated By: City of Rochester, New York, Department of Environmental Services

The Ford Street Bridge is a vital link for the City of Rochester across the Genesee River and connects the historic Corn Hill Neighborhood and the Mt. Hope-Highland National Historic District. The existing bridge was originally constructed in 1918 to carry trolley and vehicular traffic and replaced a deck truss bridge that provided little clearance for navigation over the Genesee River.

The Ford Street Bridge Rehabilitation Project was designed to address the structural deficiencies and the future transportation needs of the surrounding community while maintaining the historic character of the bridge. The historic Ford Street Bridge consists of a 390-foot long, 3-span pony truss and associated 70-foot long approach span. The historically rehabilitated bridge is to serve as the southern gateway to both the City of Rochester and the Erie Harbor area of the Genesee River.

Through the life of the bridge many of the ornamental and historically unique aspects of the structure were removed due to deterioration. Through close involvement with the City of Rochester and the State Historic Preservation Organization it was determined that the structure should be brought back, as close as possible, to its original majestic form. This was accomplished by recreating the 32-foot concrete pylons that once adorned the four corners of the bridge, period street and pedestrian lighting, bridge accent lighting, bridge rail that incorporates aspects of the original concrete rail, along with preserving the original trusses, sidewalk brackets, and ornamental pedestrian railing.

Replacement of a truss bridge typically requires a full bridge closure due to the non-redundant nature of the structure. The importance of maintaining pedestrians, emergency vehicles and utility crossings at this location required that a portion of the structure be maintained at all times. This was accomplished by utilizing a temporary truss near the centerline of the bridge deck supported on the existing piers. Hanger rods attached to the temporary truss supported the existing floor beams allowing half of the structure to be removed and reconstructed while maintaining traffic on the other half of the existing bridge.

A strong spirit of teamwork and shared vision was formed between the individuals and agencies that worked together in making this project the best that it could be. From the start of the planning process and continuing through the end of construction an extensive, proactive public outreach and community coordination program was implemented. This helped keep the citizens informed and involved in the project while also allowing them the opportunity to incorporate their ideas.

Project of the Year: Historical Restoration/Preservation More Than $10 Million

Los Angeles City Hall Seismic Rehabilitation Project

Managing Agency: City of Los Angeles, California, Department of Public Works; Bureau of Engineering, Special Projects Division

Primary Contractor: The Clark Construction Group, Inc.

Primary Consultant: Bovis Lend Lease

Nominated By: City of Los Angeles, California, Department of Public Works; Bureau of Engineering, Special Projects Division

Los Angeles City Hall was completed in 1928 and, at the time, was the tallest building in downtown Los Angeles. Over the years City Hall has been described in contemporary popular fiction, appeared in innumerable Hollywood films and television productions, and has over the years become a cultural icon.

During the past 70 years, regional earthquakes have caused significant damage to Los Angeles City Hall. Terra cotta cladding has been cracked, broken or destroyed at portions of the building's exterior where the frame succumbed to earthquake ground motion. With every significant earthquake, unanchored masonry debris broke loose and became scattered about the building's interior including the exit stairwell, obstructing passage.

The Bureau of Engineering's Special Projects Division was given the on-site day-to-day responsibility for delivering the City Hall Seismic Rehabilitation Project, which included the relocation of 2,385 City Hall tenants into temporary quarters scattered primarily about the historic core area of downtown Los Angeles, and completed the project within schedule and within the project budget of $299.8 million.

The main construction package was awarded on February 2, 1998 and City Hall was closed from March 30, 1998 until May 29, 2001, during which 68,000 pounds of dead weight was added to the building; 526 isolators and sliders and 64 viscous dampers were installed; 30,000 cubic yards of concrete were poured; 3,000 tons of structural steel and 5,000 tons of reinforcing steel were placed; and 35,000 cubic yards of earth were excavated from the basement and moat areas.

The project became a comprehensive seismic, life safety and disabled access upgrade of the 29-story landmark, and was scheduled to be completed in June 2001. In fact the first tenants relocated back to City Hall a few weeks ahead of schedule, on May 29, 2001. The building was again occupied after 38 months of construction. The project was completed within its budget.

City Hall joins an elite group of buildings in Los Angeles to undergo a total ground to sky refurbishment, updating their structural, fire life safety, and communications systems. Public areas and exterior skin have been restored to their original luster. Original restored fixtures and fabrics, along with historically accurate reproductions, have returned this building to its original look and feel while state-of-the-art seismic isolation systems offer a protection to the building that few other Los Angeles buildings enjoy.

Project of the Year: Transportation Less Than $2 Million

Suey Bridge Low-Water Crossing

Managing Agency: City of Santa Maria, California, Department of Public Works, Engineering

Primary Contractor: Dan P. Donovan Equipment Rental

Primary Consultant: Bengal Engineering

Nominated By: City of Santa Maria, California

The Suey Bridge Low-Water Crossing project utilized 15 reconditioned railroad flatcars to bridge over 400 feet of the Santa Maria River. The project constructed a low-water crossing of the Santa Maria River to connect Suey Crossing Road in Santa Maria to Bull Canyon Road in the unincorporated portion of the San Luis Obispo County. The bridge consists of one concrete abutment, one sheet pile abutment, 10 concrete bents founded on driven steel piles, and 15 reconditioned railroad flatcars. The steel flatcars are joined using welded connections. The roadway surface is asphalt concrete, with two 12-foot lanes. Tubular steel rails and metal beam guardrails protect vehicular traffic from the drop-off at the bridge edge.

The construction presented many coordination issues and challenges to overcome various obstacles throughout the process. Because the riverbed has been the site of numerous attempts to protect adjoining properties from seasonal river flows using various forms of revetment, substantial unforeseen obstacles were encountered during earthwork operations. These materials had to be removed, presenting time and cost issues.

Obtaining the railroad flatcars became a concern due to availability of the cars. The coordination of the construction required that the project occur within a narrow window of time marked by the end of discharges from Twitchell Reservoir and the beginning of the winter rainfall season (construction was prohibited during river flows of any kind). Finally, the details of putting together railroad flatcars, which do not conform to consistent dimensions, presented a challenge to the contractor to use innovative construction techniques to render a quality finished product. Fabrication and welding experts worked closely with the design engineer to overcome problems that resulted from the varying "personalities" of each railroad flatcar.

The contractor utilized an innovative construction technique in the construction of the bridge piers (curtain walls). Instead of forming the PCC piers around the steel piles, the contractor utilized shotcrete. A one-sided form was constructed on the outside of each pair of piers, and the shotcrete was applied from the center space between the piers. The profile of the piers was critical because of hydraulic and seismic design issues. The profile was constructed using piano wire guides to which finishers troweled the finished surface. The result was a high quality pier shape for a total of ten piers, all of which was constructed in three days. This innovation saved more than one week in construction time.

Project of the Year: Transportation $2-$10 Million

Bridge Street Bridge Deployment Project

Managing Agency: City of Southfield, Michigan

Primary Contractor: Angelo Iafrate Construction Co.

Primary Consultant: Hubbell, Roth & Clark, Inc.

Nominated By: City of Southfield, Michigan

The Bridge Street Bridge Deployment Project consisted of the replacement of a failing bridge over the Rouge River in the City of Southfield, Michigan, with two parallel concrete bridges. Each bridge contains three spans over a 62m (204 ft) length and carries one-way traffic in a boulevard configuration.

While the first bridge constructed (Structure A) used standard AASHTO precast concrete girders and steel reinforcement, the second bridge (Structure B) was constructed of precast concrete double tee beams that were reinforced, prestressed and post-tensioned with rods, tendons, and strands produced from carbon fiber reinforced polymers (CFRP). Both bridges were instrumented with a series of gages and sensors. The design and construction of Structure B is extraordinary. There is no other bridge of this type anywhere in the nation, nor in the world.

Many of the construction innovations utilized within this project resulted in significant savings of both time and money. Several of these innovations were implemented during the fabrication of Structure B's CFRP reinforced concrete beams.

  • The positioning of the precast steel forms relative to the stressing bed bulkheads became an important factor in minimizing the amount of wasted CFRP material. The forms were located so as to optimize use of the CFRP material.

  • Because the CFRP reinforcement prestressing operation required the use of conventional steel strands and transition steel couplers, a system was developed so that only the live end would require steel strand and couplers, while the dead end would bear directly onto the bulkhead, thus eliminating one end of transition steel couplers and steel strands. Significant timesaving was realized because of this system.

  • Sequencing of the fabrication process was optimized. At a separate location near the stressing bed, reinforcement cages were being prepared for the next beam. A beam fabrication rate of one beam per week proved to be a significant accomplishment considering the complexity of the beam design.

  • Installation of all longitudinal post tensioning tendons at the Precast Contractor's facility resulted in significant timesaving and enhanced the quality of the beams. In many projects, the longitudinal post tensioning tendons are installed after the beams have been permanently erected.
This project is anticipated to demonstrate that the use of carbon fiber reinforced polymer material as structural reinforcement can dramatically increase the potential service life of highway bridges, thereby reducing safety hazards and maintenance costs.

Project of the Year: Transportation More Than $10 Million

Airport MAX LRT Extension Design/Build Project

Managing Agency: Tri-County Metropolitan Service District, Portland, Oregon

Primary Contractor: Bechtel Infrastructure Corporation

Primary Consultant: David Evans and Associates, Inc.

Nominated By: Oregon Chapter

The light rail system in Portland, Oregon was expanded to serve the Portland International Airport (PDX) through an innovative public/private partnership in which a private development entity contributed funds for the light rail project in return for development rights on property owned by the airport.

Known locally as "Airport MAX," the new line adds 5.5 miles and four new stations to the 33-mile system, and was completed in less than three years from the start of final design to opening day.

The transit-oriented CascadeStation development will feature hotel, retail, entertainment, and office space. The development's design is driven by local and regional plans encouraging transit-oriented development.

Portions of the design and construction phases were overlapped and construction was able to begin before design was 100% complete. Elements of design were sequenced to follow the sequence of construction. For example, utilities and civil elements were designed before buildings and systems, and bridge foundations were designed and under construction before superstructure design was complete.

Because of the integrated design/build approach, the team was able to consolidate solutions that met both design and construction needs. Some of the trade-offs made on Airport MAX show how effectively both new and existing methods were applied to the benefit of the project. For example:

  • Precast traffic barriers, in place of cast-in-place ballast walls
  • Prefabricated cable channels, in place of concrete encased duct banks
  • Fiber optic signal systems, instead of copper wires
  • Pre-engineered, precast systems buildings, instead of custom masonry buildings
  • Cast-in-place segmental bridge construction, instead of pre-cast girders
Airport MAX offers an alternative to traffic congestion at the terminal, on Airport Way, and on I-205. The extension interfaces with Tri-Met's existing bus and rail service, providing numerous commuting opportunities for local and out-of-town transit riders, and for employees at the airport. Simply increasing the number of trains in service enables Airport MAX to grow with demand.

The private funding portion also provides for transit-oriented development on 120 acres near the airport. CascadeStation will feature hotel, retail, entertainment, and office space, and may create up to 10,800 new jobs, providing a new regional employment center with light rail access.