Completion of the entire I-15 CORE Expansion Project is slated for the end of December 2012. All of the work accomplished within thirty-five months, a full two years ahead of the original schedule. Provo River Constructors completed the paving portion of the project by the end of August 2012, working under heavy traffic loads and dealing with numerous challenges along the entire project.
“We have been in every circumstance that any paver could be in, guaranteed,” Steeves said. “During the project, paving with seven crews, we have seen snow, rain, wind, hot weather, cold weather, dry conditions, wet conditions... you name it. Each of our crews took ownership of their work and kept the project running. We have a really great group of people working on this project.
“The biggest challenge on the project is coordination and maintaining the MOT (management of traffic) configuration. All of the GOMACO pavers, all the 9500s, and the T/C machines haven’t been an issue. The equipment has performed outstanding for the amount of concrete that needed to be put down on this project.”
Several factors contribute to finishing the project on time, but Trane figures paving the project with 3D has been an essential part of the success.
“We’ve essentially finished this project in two paving seasons,” he explained. “I figure we’ve eliminated two days per pave running GOMACO pavers with Leica stringless and we’ve finished over 1000 paves. If you add two days to every pave... do the math. If we’d been on stringline, we would have never gotten this job done on time.
“I’ve got a good crew working with me and that’s important. I could take them on any project in the country and go up against anybody else with this crew we’ve got.”
PRC will deliver the entire scope of the project on time, within budget, and having exceeded the smoothness specification for the new concrete roadway.
“The success of the I-15 CORE project was a team effort between the PRC paving division and GOMACO,” Steeves said. “The GOMACO service department was unprecedented when we had issues with any of the equipment. The service department, as well as all the GOMACO engineers, did all they could to diagnose the issue and was part of the team in solving any issues we encountered. Running the 11 pieces of GOMACO equipment with four Leica systems, created issues and challenges to overcome at times. The GOMACO staff was by our side all the way through the project.”
The Utah Department of Transportation and the traveling public in the state have a project in which they can take great pride.
“The figure that always jumps out at me is the sheer amount of paving, 2.67 million square yards (2,232,460 m2) of concrete paving,” Stewart said. “There’s 10 interchanges, over 60 structures, but this is a paving project. It’s one hour of straight driving on the project at 55 miles (88.5 km) per hour, to go down to the bottom of the project and come back to the start of it. That’s a long time to drive on full, newly constructed interstate.
“It was the strategy of PRC to keep the whole project open the entire time, so there’s been work happening all over the place all of the time. We get criticized a lot as a DOT when we have a work zone set up and there’s no work taking place. We haven’t had that complaint on this project because something has always been happening somewhere all of the time. Plus, it’s been less than three years of pain for the motoring public and I think we’ll see some dividends from public perception.”
“From my perspective, the cooperation and communication between the owner and the contractor on this job has been head and shoulders above any other job I’ve ever been on, which has led to success,” Butterfield said. “It’s a credit to PRC’s strategy and the resources they’ve brought to bear on this project. You can’t help but be happy with the outcome of this project.”
As the entire project nears completion, the question has to be asked, where does UDOT go from here?
“That’s a very good question and one I’ve been asked before,” Stewart said. “I get excited as we near the project’s completion, but I also get sad, as well. There have not been huge challenges for us on this project. All it has been is success with record-setting speed. It’s exciting to see it come to an end, but at the same time I think, ‘The bar is so high, where do we go now?’”
Utah’s I-15 CORE Project is an impressive accomplishment for everyone involved. We had the honor of visiting the project this summer and had the opportunity to video and photograph most of the 21 GOMACO pieces of equipment at work building the new interstate. Congratulations to Provo River Constructors on a job well done, completed ahead of schedule, and with impressive PI smoothness readings. Congratulations to UDOT, as well. You have set the standard for future projects and created an amazing asset for the traveling public in Utah.
I would like to extend a special thank you to Kelly Steeves, Concrete Paving Manager for PRC. He was our host during our week on the I-15 and he has been extremely helpful in creating this special edition of the GOMACO World.
Thank you, Kelly.
– Kelly Krueger, GOMACO World Editor