PROJECT OF THE YEAR: DISASTER OR EMERGENCY CONSTRUCTION/REPAIR LESS THAN $2 MILLION

Eagle Creek Bridge Emergency Repair

Managing Agency: Clackamas County Department of Transportation and Development, Clackamas, Oregon

Primary Contractor: F.E. Ward Constructors Inc.

Primary Consultant: David Evans and Associates, Inc.

Nominated By: Clackamas County Department of Transportation and Development, Clackamas, Oregon

In July 2002, Clackamas County, Oregon, was faced with an emergency bridge closure on Eagle Creek Road, a rural arterial. During a routine inspection in early July, cracks were discovered in the substructure (columns) of the Eagle Creek Bridge. The observed cracks included a large vertical crack in an intermediate pier wall and several medium cracks in one of the pier columns. The Clackamas County Board of County Commissioners declared the bridge repair an emergency and decided to prepare an emergency design-build contract.

The design-build team worked closely with the county engineering and bridge maintenance staff to develop a simple, quick and cost-effective permanent bridge repair. Some of the main highlights of the design and construction included:

  • Replacing the existing damaged spread footing supporting bridge pier with a new pile supported pier.

  • Completing the permitting, design and construction of all in-water work in only 10 days to meet the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife's strict in-water work period established for the stream.

  • Developing design and construction means and methods that met the strict requirements of the permitting agencies. This included constructing a unique weathering steel pier wall, fabricated to protect the pile trestle.

  • Performing all construction, other than hand tools and small equipment, from the existing bridge deck. This included driving pile, fabricating pier wall, and constructing concrete pier cap.

  • Eliminating disturbance to adjacent properties and the sensitive stream or stream bank, since no work access roads were required.

  • Constructing a new pier capable of withstanding all future traffic and environmental loads, including future flood scour.

  • Constructing an environmentally and structurally sound final product that looked aesthetically pleasing.
The County's urgency to complete this project prior to the upcoming storm season was driven by the concern that the bridge could not withstand another high-water event, which would result in further footing scour and possible large stream flow and debris loads. As it turned out, in February 2003 the area was subjected to an estimated 50-year storm. The force from log debris caused by the storm likely would have further damaged the existing structure and may have resulted in a total catastrophic collapse. By repairing this structure prior to the coming storm season, the County ensured public safety, protected the environment, and possibly avoided replacing the entire structure at over five times the cost.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: DISASTER OR EMERGENCY CONSTRUCTION/REPAIR $2-$10 MILLION

Replacement of Keaiwa Stream Bridge

Managing Agency: State of Hawaii, Department of Transportation, Highways Division, Honolulu, Hawaii

Primary Contractor: Hawaiian Dredging Construction Company

Primary Consultants: Wesley R. Segawa & Associates, Inc.; KFC Airport, Inc.

Nominated By: APWA Hawaii Chapter

The Hawaiian Islands were hit hard by a storm on November 1 and 2, 2000, with constant downpours lasting more than a full day. The east side of the big island of Hawaii was particularly affected with a measured rainfall of 37 inches in a 24-hour period. The resulting damage by the storm included the devastation of the Keaiwa Bridge, cutting off the only access between Hilo and South Point.

To calm the communities' fears, the state committed to a new bridge being open to traffic by July 2001. Following an expedited RFP process, the design team was selected and given a tight schedule to complete the design, commencing on November 15, 2000 with advertising to bid occurring on December 12, 2000.

The new reinforced concrete bridge consists of two abutments and seven continuous spans with expansion joints at the abutments. The bridge is 230 feet long and has a 40-foot-wide roadway to accommodate two 11-foot travel ways and two 9-foot shoulders. In addition, the bridge approaches, reinforced concrete wing walls and concrete rubble masonry walls had to be designed to stabilize the stream banks.

The superstructure consists of 11-inch thick prestressed-precast planks, composite with six inches of cast-in-place concrete topping. Precasting was selected to expedite the construction time. The substructure consists of six wall piers on narrow continuous footings, embedded in the basalt subgrade. The wall piers are skewed 42.5 degrees, i.e., 47.5 degrees from the longitudinal axis.

To minimize construction time, the contractor requested FHWA, HDOT and KSF, Inc., the structural engineering consultant on the design consultant team, to consider using a Shrinkage Reducing Admixture (SRA), such as Tetraguard AS2O, in the concrete topping in the deck. The SRA is used to reduce the shrinkage in lieu of the thirty-day poured strip.

The bridge deck was poured on May 5, 2001, and opened to two-way traffic on May 25, 2001. The innovative solution of using the SRA, in lieu of the delayed poured strip, allowed the roadway to be opened to traffic thirty days earlier than anticipated.

To give the bridge a historical appearance, an open rail structural system consisting of reinforced concrete posts and beams was utilized. To blend in with the surrounding environment, cement rubble masonry wing walls and stream bank walls were installed in lieu of concrete. The cement rubble masonry gave the bridge area a rock appearance that matched the appearance of the area.

The project was designed in only six weeks, was constructed in three months, met strict environmental compliance, and minimized public inconvenience.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: DISASTER OR EMERGENCY CONSTRUCTION/REPAIR MORE THAN $10 MILLION

Clearwell Roof Collapse: Emergency Response

Managing Agency: Detroit Water & Sewerage Department, Detroit, Michigan

Primary Contractor: EBI Detroit, Inc.

Primary Consultant: NTH Consultants, Ltd.

Nominated By: Detroit Water & Sewerage Department, Detroit, Michigan

The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD) Lake Huron Water Treatment Plant (LHWTP) is located in Fort Gratiot, Michigan and serves approximately one million customers in 40 communities in southeast Michigan with a nominal treatment capacity of 270 million gallons per day. Water storage for the LHWTP is provided by two existing below-grade clearwells (the North Clearwell and the South Clearwell), each with a nominal capacity of 15 million gallons for a total LHWTP storage capacity of 30 million gallons.

As a planned upgrade of the South Clearwell neared completion in June 1999, the plant's water storage capacity was compromised when a portion of the roof collapsed on June 22 during final topsoil placement operations on the roof of the clearwell. No persons were injured or construction equipment damaged by the failure. However, the loss of the South Clearwell limited the operational redundancy and storage capacity of the LHWTP.

DWSD retained NTH Consultants, Ltd. under the emergency provisions of an existing contract to form a team of consultants to perform a structural evaluation of the partially collapsed structure, to determine the cause of the collapse, and to determine if the structure could be repaired or should be replaced. DWSD reviewed the preliminary forensic report and elected to proceed with construction of a new prestressed wire-wrapped clearwell to the south of the damaged clearwell, under a design/build process to expedite restoration of operational redundancy at the LHWTP.

Initiation of the installation of the two-foot-thick bottom slab began in November 1999 and was completed in January 2000. The installation of the bottom slab was critical to the remaining construction sequence for the tank. The tank wall sections, which were precast onsite, could be placed only once the bottom slab was completed.

Wall section casting beds were constructed and wall sections were actually formed and cast during the fall and early winter months so that the wall sections were ready to be set in place during January to early March of 2000. Had any of the above critical steps failed to meet their deadlines, the project schedule would have been jeopardized.

DWSD placed the new clearwell in service on August 15, 2000, when the design-build contractor achieved substantial completion. The contractor was granted a 75-day time extension and relief from liquidated damages due to inclement weather, a strike by construction trades, local shortage of construction materials, unanticipated structural conditions at the junctions with the existing plant, and unanticipated soil conditions resulting in two failed excavation slopes.

With full three-shift operations, long hours, extensive number of workers, and some of the time in confined space, not a single major injury occurred.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: ENVIRONMENT LESS THAN $2 MILLION

Rio Nuevo Landfill Stabilization Project

Managing Agency: Environmental Management, City of Tucson, Arizona

Primary Contractor: Hydro Geo Chem, Inc.

Primary Consultant: Hydro Geo Chem, Inc.

Nominated By: APWA Arizona Chapter

The City of Tucson has proposed the Rio Nuevo Landfill Stabilization Project (LSP) for the redevelopment and expansion of Tucson's metropolitan downtown area. As part of this project, an area covering more than 50 acres and containing three closed municipal landfills is scheduled for development. The City of Tucson proposes the LSP as an innovative in-situ technique to stabilize the refuse within the Rio Nuevo landfills and allow the Rio Nuevo Project to proceed in a cost-effective and timely manner.

The City of Tucson's Environmental Management and their consultants have applied composting principles as an innovative in-situ composting technique for the stabilization of three unlined landfills—the Nearmont, Congress, and A-Mountain landfills. An aerobic bioreactor pilot test was designed in order to better understand the dynamics of a modern landfill. Similar to composting, in-situ aerobic degradation requires air and water to enhance the natural degradation process. Under aerobic conditions, methane generation does not occur and once air circulation begins, any existing methane is eliminated quickly.

The LSP's remediation system consisted of 41 wells to include eight pairs of ground penetrating radar wells, 16 monitoring wells, three injection wells, and six extraction wells. This system acts to inject clean air into the center of the test pilot area using three air injection wells, with six vapor extraction wells removing gases at the perimeter. With the addition of air and water to the test pilot, the idea is to create a more favorable environment to stimulate natural microbial interaction for increased degradation while maintaining a stable and safe working environment. In using this technology, this site has applied a cost-effective and low environmental impact bioremedial solution to stabilize unlined municipal solid waste landfills.

The success of the Rio Nuevo Landfill Stabilization Pilot test has exceeded expectations. Based on the results of the project, it was recommended that a full-scale system for the LSP at Nearmont, Congress, and A-Mountain landfills be designed. The following results were indicative of the LSP: 1) the aforementioned landfills can be stabilized within the given time interval of three to five years, 2) enhanced in-situ aerobic degradation can be operated safely and effectively, 3) the full-scale system can be designed, constructed, and operated effectively and economically with recommended monitoring technologies, water delivery methods, and air circulation patterns, and 4) the optimum degradation rates are achieved at temperatures greater than 160øF and less than 180øF.

Overall, this project has potentially saved millions of dollars for the redevelopment and expansion of Tucson's metropolitan downtown area using the proposed methods for landfill stabilization at the Rio Nuevo Project area.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: ENVIRONMENT $2-$10 MILLION

Crystal Spring Filtration Plant

Managing Agency: City of Roanoke, Virginia

Primary Contractor: Mid Eastern Builders, Inc.

Primary Consultant: Wiley and Wilson, Inc.

Nominated By: City of Roanoke, Virginia

The City of Roanoke has relied on the naturally flowing Crystal Spring as a drinking water source since 1905. In May 2000, evidence of fecal coliform in the raw spring water was detected, and the city discontinued use of this drinking water source. Rather than being treated and conveyed to water customers, four million gallons of the spring water ran into the Roanoke River.

In 2001, Roanoke entered record-breaking drought conditions, which continued through December 2002. The city's primary source of water, Carvins Cove Reservoir, dropped to less than one-third of its capacity over the course of 2001 and 2002.

To prevent a water shortage crisis and offset its dwindling, primary water source, the city swiftly took action to build a new plant to treat Crystal Spring water. Because the raw spring water was deemed under the influence of surface water, new federal guidelines in the Safe Water Drinking Act required that the spring water be filtered. The city selected membrane filtration because of site constraints and ease of operation.

The city used a competitive procurement process in purchasing the membrane filter system, which saved considerable time and capital costs. In 2002, construction was completed on schedule and under budget. With a capacity to treat five million gallons per day, Crystal Spring Filtration Plant is the largest microfiltration plant in Virginia. The plant also contains office space for the city's Department of Utilities administration staff.

The City of Roanoke and the Roanoke community are very proud of the Crystal Spring Filtration Plant for numerous reasons. The construction project was under strict time constraints due to an impending water shortage, yet the city's commitment to the plant's design, aesthetics and performance was never compromised. All objectives of this construction project were successfully realized:

  • A permanent, additional drinking water source was made available to the drought-stricken city on schedule. In addition, in the midst of construction, a temporary filtration system supplied water to the community three months before the construction of the permanent filtration system was complete.

  • The design of the building is complementary to the historic environs of the plant. Restoration work at the historic Crystal Spring Steam Pump Station—part of the construction budget—benefited the preservation of the historic building.

  • The plant is successfully integrated into Crystal Spring Park. A new parking lot and lighting for both the plant and the adjacent tennis courts benefit both park visitors and plant operations.

  • With the use of competitive procurement of the membrane filtration system, the city saved more than $600,000.
PROJECT OF THE YEAR: ENVIRONMENT MORE THAN $10 MILLION

Hart Street Wastewater Pump Station Force Main Replacement

Managing Agency: Department of Design and Construction, City and County of Honolulu, Hawaii

Primary Contractor: Modern Continental Companies

Primary Consultant: Wilson Okamoto Corporation/URS Corporation

Nominated By: APWA Hawaii Chapter

The Hart Street Wastewater Force Main project successfully demonstrated the feasibility of a large dual pipeline installation using horizontal directional drilling and microtunneling in difficult soil conditions with no adverse environmental effects and minimal socioeconomic impacts.

In what is believed to be the longest and largest force main pipeline ever installed by horizontal directional drilling methods, two parallel 34-inch-high density polyethylene (HDPE) pipes within 46-inch steel casings were installed for the replacement force main's 3,100-foot crossing beneath Honolulu Harbor. The alignment required achieving a depth of 120 feet below mean sea level to pass beneath pier deck piles. The dual force mains were designed to be only 20 feet apart center-to-center, requiring unprecedented accuracy in drilling.

Two 60-inch bores were required to accommodate the HDPE pipes and their steel casing. Pre-assembled pipe strings in 500-foot lengths were placed on rollers and lifted by seven large-capacity construction cranes during the massive pipe pull-back operation. The busy container yard operations required that each of the pipeline pull-back operations be completed in an unprecedented 36-hour "window."

The use of horizontal directional drilling methods for the channel crossing was highly effective in avoiding disruption to the Honolulu Harbor operations and water quality impacts to the Class A waters. There were no discharges to the coastal waters during horizontal directional drilling and pipeline installation.

Microtunneling was used to install the remaining 2,100 feet of the replacement force main from the container yard to the Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant. Five microtunneling receiving and jacking shafts were required at depths up to 40 feet below ground level. 48-inch fiberglass reinforced (Hobas) pipe was installed in segments that ranged from 300 to 1,000 feet in length. Microtunneling was effective in avoiding disruption to container yard operations which experience continuously heavy volumes of truck and container traffic.

To promote ground stabilization and groundwater control, jet-grouted columns were installed at selected locations. The pier deck used for container loading and unloading, supported by piles, was underpinned with jet-grouted columns to protect the pile foundations during directional drilling operations. Jet grouting was also used at the microtunneling shafts to seal the pit bottom and control groundwater during construction.

The replacement force main is the first sewer force main to be installed using both horizontal directional drilling and microtunneling techniques. Importantly for the City and County of Honolulu, the project construction was completed two and a half months ahead of schedule and approximately $2.5 million under budget.

There were no lost-time accidents during the project's construction period (May 2000 to June 2001). A total of 41,767 man-hours were logged on the job.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: HISTORICAL RESTORATION/PRESERVATION LESS THAN $2 MILLION

Soo Line "S" Bridge

Managing Agency: City of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, Department of Public Works

Primary Contractor: Great Lakes Marine Contracting, Inc.

Primary Consultant: Fleming, Andre & Associates, Inc.

Nominated By: City of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, Department of Public Works

The Soo Line Railroad "S" Bridge was constructed in 1910 by the Minneapolis Steel and Machinery Company. The bridge was designed to accommodate a loading for two 177-ton locomotives and train load of 5,000 pounds per lineal foot of the bridge. The bridge existed in its original condition, except for removal of the rails, prior to the renovation project in 2002. The bridge is 442 feet in length and consists of five spans, supported by two abutments and four piers. The bridge appears to be shaped in the form of an "S" and is commonly referred to in the community as the "S" Bridge.

An engineering inspection identified several repairs that were needed to preserve the structure. The construction schedule originally called for completing the pier rehabilitation first followed by the deck, railing and lighting installation. The contractor encountered high water levels in the Eau Claire River immediately upon starting construction. To meet the short time frame to complete the project, work was started on replacing the ties and installing the deck and railing as the first stage of construction. The serpentine "S" shape created difficult construction on curves with very few straight lines, and the contractor was required to field fabricate the majority of the deck and railing with a significant number of different cutting angles.

Work on the piers was completed after the river levels receded. Repairs involved removing all delaminated concrete and placing new concrete around the existing piers to encase and protect the piers. Pier work was completed from the new bridge deck without causing damage to the new construction due to the care and construction techniques employed by the contractor.

The "S" bridge was determined by the City of Eau Claire as having potential to be listed on the National Register for Historic Buildings. The City's consultant worked with the State Historical Society and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation to develop a design that would preserve and enhance the unique character of the structure. A wood deck and railing, with a steel grid system powder-coated with a black paint, was used to blend the new features into the existing structure. A wood truss was used for the railing to add strength and reflect the steel structure shape into the visible aspects of the project.

The finished project has created a high-quality transportation facility that preserves a unique railroad structure, and provides individuals access to a scenic area in the heart of the City of Eau Claire.

There were no lost-time injuries that resulted from the project, in spite of the height of the structure and complexity of the construction.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: HISTORICAL RESTORATION/PRESERVATION $2-$10 MILLION

Holman Stadium Improvements

Managing Agency: City of Nashua, New Hampshire, Department of Public Works

Primary Contractor: Bread Loaf Corporation

Primary Consultant: CMA Engineers, Inc.

Nominated By: City of Nashua, New Hampshire, Department of Public Works

Holman Stadium is a historic baseball stadium owned and operated by the City of Nashua, New Hampshire. The stadium is home to the Nashua Pride, an independent minor league baseball club, and to high school games and civic functions such as Independence Day celebrations and graduations. The stadium has a capacity of 4,100.

Built in 1937, the bowl stadium with a brick fa‡ade is a classic design, with brick archways and wrought iron gates at the stadium entryways. The stadium is a historic structure and is cherished by many for its classic visual appearance.

However, in 2001 the stadium was in critical need of a full rehabilitation. The stadium structure was crumbling and, although safe, the deteriorating conditions critically needed to be addressed in order to avoid unsafe conditions. The stadium didn't meet tightening code requirements from a number of different perspectives. The utilities didn't work, the women's room flooded regularly, the players didn't have hot water for showers, the scoreboard had "hieroglyphics nights" and the stadium lights at times could not be shut off.

In June 2001 the City of Nashua and the Nashua Pride entered into a new Concessions Agreement for continued minor league baseball use of the stadium. The agreement envisioned a $4.5 million infusion of capital to renovate the stadium, with both the City and the Nashua Pride responsible for their defined shares of bond payments over time. The renovations were to address the shared interests of the City in shoring up the stadium's infrastructure to assure several decades of continued use and to preserve the historic nature of the structure, and the Nashua Pride's interests in providing as many of the fan amenities as could be provided within the established budget.

The project involved the structural renovation of the bowl stadium beneath the pre-cast concrete structure; the installation of all new stadium seats; the construction of new field-level seats closer to home plate than had existed previously; reconstruction of all utilities; gutting and reconstruction of restrooms; construction of new minor league team office space; installation of new concession stands, ticket booths, and novelty stands; construction of two new tiers behind the bowl stadium, housing a new expanded press box and skyboxes with supporting services above; and appurtenant work.

The project was completed over the winter of 2002, on time to allow home baseball games to begin in May as scheduled, and with somewhat more than $1 remaining in the $4.5 million budget at project completion. This complicated project, with a schedule with no room for error and a seemingly unachievable budget, came off without a hitch, on time, and within budget.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: STRUCTURES LESS THAN $2 MILLION

Misteguay Creek Intercounty Drain Structure No. 4

Managing Agency: Misteguay Creek Intercounty Drainage Board, Lansing, Michigan

Primary Contractor: Champagne & Marx Excavating

Primary Consultant: Spicer Group Inc.

Nominated By: APWA Michigan Chapter

The Misteguay Creek Intercounty Drain flows 26 miles from its headwater in Genesee County to its outlet at the Shiawassee River in Saginaw County. Its watershed encompasses 108,000 acres in Genesee, Saginaw, and Shiawassee counties. Three flood control structures were constructed in the early 1960s as part of a PL-566 agreement with the federal government. The three structures are 2A, 3A, and Structure No. 4.

In the spring of 1985, 7.5 inches of rainfall in nine hours produced a flood event that severely damaged Structure No. 4's emergency spillway and nearly breached the dam. To continue its partnership with the federal government, the Misteguay Creek Intercounty Drainage Board was required to make improvements to Structure No. 4 to bring it into compliance with federal design standards.

Studies conducted by the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) and the Michigan Department of Agriculture (MDA) after the 1985 event recommended the dam be removed. Due to public opposition to removing the dam, the drainage board considered making modifications to the dam rather than demolish it.

After conducting several studies and defining an acceptable design flood event, the next step was to design modifications that were capable of meeting the various federal, state and local requirements. The basic approach of the design was to strengthen and rebuild the structure to extend its life and modify its dimensions to meet current requirements. The consultant soon settled on a relatively new construction technique known as roller-compacted concrete (RCC). Although new in the United States, the technology has a proven history of success throughout Canada, Europe and Asia.

After the performance criteria and methods of construction were identified, the final design plans were completed during a six-month schedule. The contractor was selected and the project commenced with phase one of construction on June 6, 2002. Despite a few difficulties that were discovered during construction that potentially could have halted the project, the modifications to Structure No. 4 were completed ahead of schedule on October 20, 2002.

Working with numerous agencies and other parties, the consultant and the Misteguay Creek Intercounty Drainage Board were successful in designing and completing the needed improvements to Structure No. 4. "The improvements made on the Misteguay Creek Intercounty Drain give the surrounding area protection and will benefit the drainage district for years to come," said James Koski, Saginaw County Public Works Commissioner.

There were no lost-time injuries recorded over the five-month construction period.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: STRUCTURES $2-$10 MILLION

Wells Street CTA Structure

Managing Agency: Chicago Department of Transportation, Bureau of Bridges and Transit, Chicago, Illinois

Primary Contractor: Walsh Construction Company of Illinois

Primary Consultant: Teng & Associates, Inc.

Nominated By: APWA Chicago Metro Chapter

In 1909, Daniel Burnham and Edward Bennett proposed a double-deck urban viaduct around the perimeter of the downtown Chicago business district. The concept allows for car traffic and pedestrian access to the buildings on the upper level, and truck traffic on the lower level to accommodate garage access and service deliveries.

Although proposed in 1909, the Wacker Drive Viaduct did not begin construction until 1925 and was completed in 1926. Before the idea could be implemented, the City of Chicago was already evolving into a thriving metropolis. Many of the bascule bridges crossing the Chicago River were already in operation and the overhead transit system known as the Northwestern Elevated Railroad was already in service. Now, this overhead transit system is affectionately referred to as the "El" and is operated by the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA).

Having reached its useful service life of 75 years, the City of Chicago found it necessary to reconstruct the Wacker Drive Viaduct. Just as in 1925, the reconstruction of Wacker Drive necessitated modifications to and integration with various other structures along the corridor. Included among these numerous structural improvements is the replacement of the CTA elevated train structure known as the Brown/Purple Line Structure at Wells Street.

To understand the interaction of the Wells Street CTA Bridge with Wacker Drive, one only needed to try and negotiate the bottleneck at lower level Wacker resulting from the substructure supporting the CTA columns. When Wacker Drive was constructed in 1925, there appeared to be every intention of replacing the existing structure with a new bridge, clear-spanning the intersection. However, this through truss structure was never put in place. What remained was a forest of columns and old retaining walls that forced both the east and westbound lower level roadways from two lanes to a single lane and created one of the worst safety hazards on the old lower level Wacker.

With the reconstruction of Wacker Drive, the Chicago Department of Transportation seized upon the opportunity to abolish once and for all these inconvenient and dangerous traffic obstructions. In place of the existing four-span CTA structure, a new three-span superstructure with a main span of 111 feet clear-spans the post-tensioned slab of the upper level viaduct. This is more than double the maximum span of the former structure of approximately 52 feet.

All of the components of this project resulted in a dramatic improvement to the safety and functionality of every mode of transportation affected by the reconstruction of Wacker Drive including vehicular traffic, pedestrians, and rail transit. Furthermore, the installation of this structure was conducted in a manner to provide the minimum imposition on each of these modes as well.

Although part of a much larger project, the Wells Street CTA Bridge was one of the most critical components contributing to the overall improvement of the safety and functionality of the Wacker Drive Reconstruction Project. It improved the intersection turning movements and roadway geometrics at upper level Wacker, improved pedestrian crossing safety at street level and improved operations of the CTA rail service at track level.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: STRUCTURES MORE THAN $10 MILLION

The Centre of Elgin

Managing Agency: City of Elgin, Illinois

Primary Contractor: Gilbane Building Co.

Primary Consultant: Williams Architects

Nominated By: APWA Chicago Metro Chapter

The Centre of Elgin located in the core of Elgin's revitalized downtown Cultural District is the largest municipally-owned family recreation center in the nation. The project consists of a new, 398-car parking structure, a 184,712 gsf Recreation Center, and roadway and streetscape improvements surrounding the site. The City of Elgin's commitment to public recreation, co-generational community activities and urban revitalization is evident throughout this project.

The multi-level design of the Recreational Center is sensitive to the surrounding urban context with a design that seamlessly integrates the natural topography of the site and compliments the dynamics of interior activity. The first level features a secure preschool wing and four themed classrooms, childcare, outdoor play area, leisure pools, eight-lane competition pool, therapy pool, triple court gymnasium, arts and crafts, racquetball courts, multipurpose banquet room, meeting rooms, teaching kitchen, seniors center, 35-foot climbing wall, lounges with a cafe, and a wellness center.

Visitors are welcomed to the second level activity space featuring a "club" atmosphere health and fitness, three-lane running track with views to the gymnasium and indoor pools, enclosed pedestrian bridge to a multi-level parking structure, teen center, dance and aerobics, and administrative offices.

Because of the owner's expressed desire to include the best possible materials and quality in the construction of the Centre, the contractor developed a comprehensive quality plan to ensure all materials and workmanship met the requirements contained in the contract documents. This quality plan included first inspections of materials delivered to the project for the first time to ensure the selected materials were being used and met the requirements of the submittals.

Several mockups were constructed to work out installation "bugs" and serve as the quality standard for the actual installation. Mockups were made of the exterior walls, architectural concrete, precise panels with integrally cast brick veneer, colored concrete (pool deck), architectural pressed concrete sidewalks, and various architectural finishes. Quality deficiencies noted during construction were noted on a "Rolling Completion List" and distributed to trade contractors at the weekly superintendent's meeting to ensure non-conforming items were corrected before they could be concealed by later work and before substantial completion of the building/compilation of the architect's punchlist. The process was embraced by the contractors as they recognized the benefits of a smaller punchlist and fewer mobilizations to complete their work.

The project accomplished the City of Elgin's goals set forth in their master plan, and contributed to the economic revival of downtown Elgin.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: TRANSPORTATION LESS THAN $2 MILLION

110th Street and Lamar Avenue Roundabout Improvements

Managing Agency: City of Overland Park, Kansas

Primary Contractor: Pyramid Contractors, Inc.

Primary Consultant: Olsson Associates

Nominated By: APWA Kansas City Metro Chapter

The 110th Street and Lamar Avenue Roundabout Improvement Project is the first two-lane modern roundabout in the City of Overland Park, Kansas. Being located adjacent to the newly-constructed Overland Park Hotel and Convention Center Complex, this project had very high visibility. It was paramount that the project be completed and open to traffic prior to the opening of the Convention Center facility. The project required substantial cooperation and coordination with the contractor of the Convention Center due to the construction activities along the common areas of 110th Street and Lamar Avenue.

The pavement in the roundabout, including the flared approaches between the circulating lanes and the entry nose of the splitter islands, is 240 mm of concrete placed on 120 mm of drainable aggregate base course and 200 mm of fly ash treated base. The tangent approaches prior to the splitter islands are constructed of 255 mm of asphaltic concrete on 200 mm of fly ash treated base. An under-drain pipe system was installed to convey subsurface water from under the pavement to an enclosed storm drainage system consisting of curb inlets to remove surface water runoff.

The project also included 600 mm wide concrete curb and gutter with 100 mm curb height, 1.5 m sidewalk and wheelchair ramps constructed of 100 mm and 150 mm thick concrete respectively, 150 mm thick concrete drive entrances, and concrete curbing for splitter islands and central island. The splitter islands and central island are constructed with concrete paver stones or limestone pavers on a concrete base with a raised concrete edge curb to retain the soil in the landscaped planting areas.

The landscaping in the central island consists of two large earthen berms behind two decorative retaining walls. The retaining walls are constructed of structurally reinforced concrete with limestone facing and raised bronze lettering attached to the face. The plantings are a variety of annual flowers, perennial wild flowers and ornamental grasses. An irrigation system with quick hose couplers was installed to supply water to the landscape planting areas. In addition to a streetlighting system for roadway lighting, low voltage aesthetic lighting was constructed in the central island with varying color filters to accent the planting materials. Proper pavement markings and permanent signing were installed to provide the appropriate guidance to the traveling public.

The project was completed ahead of schedule, within budget, and with no lost time accidents in spite of utility conflicts, coordination issues, and material delivery problems.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: TRANSPORTATION $2-$10 MILLION

Broadway "Diamondback" Bicycle/Pedestrian Bridge

Managing Agency: City of Tucson, Arizona, Department of Transportation

Primary Contractor: Hunter Construction Company

Primary Consultant: T.Y. Lin International

Nominated By: APWA Arizona Chapter

The Broadway "Diamondback" Bicycle/Pedestrian Bridge project marked the first time the City of Tucson Department of Transportation accepted an artist's concept before engineers actually designed the project. The project's goal was to "bridge" a busy intersection (34,500 vehicles per day) with a structure that resembles a Western Diamondback rattlesnake as a key link in a citywide pedestrian and bicycle path system.

When the City of Tucson and Hunter Construction Company began building the Diamondback Bridge they knew it would be challenging, but little did they know just how tough it would be. Transforming the sinuous shape of a snake into a functional bridge presented the challenge of blending an artistic concept with construction ingenuity.

The Diamondback Bridge is a post-tensioned, box girder concrete structure with bridge fencing material painted with a diamond pattern to simulate snakeskin. The bridge is 11 feet tall, 14 feet across, 280 feet long, and allows for a 17-foot clearance above Broadway Boulevard. Cyclists and pedestrians can make their way through the bridge via the tail or between the fangs of the open-mouthed rattler. The 28-foot-high snakehead includes lifelike, translucent eyes that light up and the 20-foot-high tail is equipped with a 300-pound fiberglass rattle.

Motion sensors installed near the rattle detect users' presence on the bridge, which triggers a realistic rattling sound effect. The changing light and shadows on the open weave fencing give the viewer the impression of movement. The expanded bridge fence canopy presents the cyclist or walker with an unobstructed, panoramic view of downtown Tucson and the Catalina Mountains.

The Diamondback Bridge now provides increased safety for bicyclists and pedestrians crossing over Broadway Boulevard in this area and will in time connect to the Aviation Bikeway. This connection will provide bicycle access from the eastside to downtown without entering the traffic areas, and greatly increase the safety for the riders.

The final project cost was $2.5 million funded through matching Federal Transportation Enhancement Grants with the City of Tucson contributing 20% of the project costs. Through teamwork, innovation, and perseverance, the City of Tucson and the construction team successfully completed this bridge—a bridge that has already become a Tucson landmark and forever captures the beauty and excitement of the southwestern desert.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR: TRANSPORTATION MORE THAN $10 MILLION

Wacker Drive Reconstruction Project

Managing Agency: Chicago Department of Transportation, Bureau of Bridges and Transit, Chicago, Illinois

Primary Contractor: Walsh Group

Primary Consultants: Earth Tech, Inc.; Alfred Benesch & Company; Teng & Associates, Inc.; McDonough Associates, Inc.; CTE Engineers; T.Y. Lin International

Nominated By: APWA Chicago Metro Chapter

Wacker Drive is a vital artery into, out of and around the heart of Chicago. In a country filled with famous thoroughfares, the two-tiered roadway remains without peer.

The L-shaped Wacker Drive runs in all directions, with its east-west leg running alongside the Chicago River. Wacker serves as a distributor artery for seven major north/south streets and nine east/west streets in downtown Chicago. Lower Wacker also provides access for deliveries, parking and refuse pickup for 57 high-rise buildings in Chicago's Loop.

In 1996, the City of Chicago began planning the replacement of this unique structure. The design team provided a balance between the modern design standards of today and the historical features of the original design of Daniel H. Burnham. Highlights of the $200 million project include:

  • Increased curve radii at Lake Street, Franklin Street and Michigan Avenue to improve safety and operation.

  • Realigned and shifted Wacker at Wabash Avenue to improve intersection channelization, allowing the relocation of a Vietnam War Memorial to a new riverside plaza.

  • Widened the upper level roadway to provide a consistent six-lane cross section.

  • Developed a post-tensioned deck structure approximately one-half the thickness of the original structure which, along with lowering of the lower level roadway, provided and increased lower level vertical clearance of 13'-9" from the existing 12'-3".

  • Developed a substructure design that could accommodate the movement of the new structure while utilizing the existing hand-dug reinforced concrete caissons.

  • Removal, restoration and replacement of the historic limestone elements including balustrades, bench assemblies, obelisks and stairways connecting nine Bascule bridges with the Chicago River dock.

  • Provided infrastructure for future riverwalk and riverwalk development.

  • Concrete used would build a sidewalk six feet wide and 140 miles long—the distance from Chicago to Madison, Wisconsin.

  • Workers poured concrete for the Wabash Deck using 2,100 cubic yards of concrete for over 12 hours, the largest continuous pour ever completed in the City of Chicago.