Creative engineering not only has been a hallmark of the job, it’s been a necessity in order to meet the deadline.
To maintain traffic on one side of the bridge, the team has had to perform the bridge construction in two phases. That meant the existing drawbridge had to be cut in half, requiring extensive in-water shoring.
In an example of pure Kiewit innovation, the team developed a jack-up barge for the shoring system to support the structural steel on the bascule span.
The design was adapted from a previous job in Miami about 10 years ago, said Senior Structural Engineer Dave Lamoureux.
Before starting work, however, the plan needed to be approved by the client.
“We had to show them that we had done our due diligence and all the proper engineering to ensure we weren’t going to damage the structure and cause any risk to the traveling public.”
Per Kiewit policy, the team had to secure independent reviews of the plan and also responded to about 250 questions from the client and the engineer of record.
“We addressed all the comments and concerns that were raised and got everyone more comfortable after working through the process,” Lamoureux said.
“We were able to pre-fabricate a lot of the work on the shore and then float the barge into position and jack it up into place. That eliminated a lot of the work that would have been done out on the water, and a lot of the low headroom work under the bridge.”
From design to execution, creating this solution has been a satisfying first for Kiewit, said Lamoureux.
“We hadn’t done it in totality this way before, but we’ve taken bits and pieces of what we’ve done before to come up with a solution to this particular problem.”