Tallahassee, Fla. — Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), Community/Condotte/DeMoya JV, BCC Engineering and FINLEY Engineering Group (FINLEY) have won the 2016 FICE Engineering Excellence Grand Conceptor Award for the Section 5 Palmetto SR826/836 Interchange (Bridges 9, 11, 15 and 19).

The FICE Engineering Excellence Awards program is designed to recognize outstanding contributions to the consulting engineering profession through comprehensive evaluation of projects by a distinguished panel of experts in related fields. The Grand Conceptor Award is given to one outstanding project representing the best overall engineering achievement.  

This $558 million design-build-finance reconstruction of Section 5 Palmetto SR 826/836 Interchange creates a safer and less congested route for 430,000 vehicles traveling through the interchange daily. Challenges included project location in Miami International Airport’s flight path, FAA vertical height restrictions, canals located in the middle of the project, strong aesthetic requirements, traffic flow maintenance during construction, and bridge pier placement.  

This project delivery method fostered innovation, creativity, and ultimately provided the FDOT and the traveling public with more than they expected. This Team was the only one to take on the full scope of the project. Collaboration began nearly a year in advance of the advertisement and the Team developed solutions to the many project challenges. Use of the FDOT’s Alternative Technical Concepts (ATCs) process allowed the use of diabolos with external tendons for the first time. Other design innovations included using non-traditional shaped piers, adjusting the footing size to accommodate conditions, and pier caps, which were designed to support the balanced cantilever during construction. These design innovations reduced construction costs, as well as long-term maintenance costs.  

Key Team members on this project included:

  • Owner: Florida Department of Transportation, Miami-Dade Expressway Authority
  • Contractor: Community, Condotte America, Inc., De Moya Joint Venture Prime
  • Design Consultant: BCC Engineering, Inc. Segmental Bridge Design and
  • Construction Engineering: FINLEY Engineering Group Bridge Aesthetics:
  • Touchstone Architects Precast Producer: Rizzani de Eccher Casting and Erection
  • Equipment: DEAL Post-Tensioning: VSL
  • Construction Engineering and Inspection: AIM Engineering and Survey, Inc.  

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