Denver — The Ohio Department of Transportation’s I-71/I-670 Columbus Crossroads Interchange received the Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA) National Award of Merit in the Transportation category. CH2M HILL also received two National Awards of Merit in the Water/Wastewater category for the Agua Nueva Water Reclamation Facility in Tucson, Ariz., and the Wilsonville Wastewater Treatment Plant in Wilsonville, Ore.

The awards celebrate exemplary application of Design-Build Done Right project delivery for projects that achieved best value, while also meeting design and construction quality, cost and schedule goals. CH2M HILL served as the design lead for I-71/I-670 Interchange — the largest highway project in Central Ohio history. The completed project encompasses approximately one mile of I-71 and one and a half miles of I-670 Eastbound; 18 ramps; 20 new bridges, including a cap structure over I-71 with dedicated green space; 2 rehabilitated bridges; 29 retaining walls; 2 new local urban avenues; a realigned 60-inch storm sewer and a 54-inch micro-tunnel.

“Creative design solutions matched with skillful construction capabilities led to the successful delivery of Columbus Crossroads, ahead of its original schedule and below its original budget,” stated CH2M HILL Transportation Market President Terry Ruhl. “We are honored to have partnered with Kokosing Construction Company on this vital project for Central Ohio.”

Keeping in mind the challenges of reconstructing a highly-traveled, downtown urban interchange that was a top five hot spot crash location in Ohio, the new design increased capacity along I-71 and I-670 Eastbound, reconfigured the overall interchange layout to eliminate weaving, improved connections into and out of downtown Columbus, and reconstructed several City of Columbus local streets to create urban avenues with unique aesthetic enhancements to reconnect neighborhoods to downtown and make the interchange a safer place for the citizens of Columbus.

During construction, the Kokosing/CH2M HILL team was challenged with safely maintaining interstate traffic, minimizing inconvenience to the travelling public and creating work zones that kept construction forces out of harm’s way. To meet these demands, the majority of the I-71 roadway and trench area were built “offline” by designing the construction phasing to utilize the existing roadway and proposed ramp alignments to maintain traffic, which increased efficiencies in constructing the proposed interchange footprint.

Among other beneficial additions to the project, the team initiated a re-route of I-670 Eastbound during the 2012 construction season that allowed construction of more work areas concurrently and gave full use of the interstate and ramps to the public seven months sooner than the original 37 month schedule had proposed. The Alternative Technical Concept process was used pre-bid to implement alternative pavement designs and provide design refinements to roadway geometry that reduced construction complexity, required maintenance and construction materials. In addition, during the design phase, Kokosing/CH2M HILL developed a design solution to salvage an existing triple-barrel sanitary sewer siphon under I-71, which significantly reduced utility and motorist impacts, while providing a $1 million savings to taxpayers.

The Kokosing/CH2M HILL team will receive their DBIA award at the 2014 Design-Build Conference & Expo on October 7, in Dallas. All National Award of Merit winners qualify for consideration of an Award of Excellence, which will be announced at the conference as well.