March 2, 2016
December 16, 2015
Thousands of Portland residents turned up Feb. 27 for the grand opening of the new Sellwood Bridge.
Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines. Bring your bikes, too.
The new and greatly improved $227 million Sellwood Bridge is open in Portland, Oregon. The Slayden/Sundt Joint Venture team celebrated with the community at a grand opening for pedestrians this past weekend. Motorists were allowed to start using the bridge Tuesday.
The public had been using a detour bridge during the construction period, resulting in no more than 20 days of closures over four years. The JV’s contract with Multnomah County called for 30 days at most.
When the bridge opened in 1925, it was a welcome upgrade from a ferry service that shuttled passengers across the river. But the narrow two-lane bridge had fallen into disrepair and scored only a two out of 100 on a federal bridge sufficiency rating scale.
It was one of the more complex heavy civil jobs the company has undertaken with issues to be expected from an outdated bridge used by 30,000 vehicles every day in an earthquake-prone area all while sticking to a budget funded by taxpayers.
“The complexity, the bridge translation, procurement method and size of the project puts Sundt in the league of premier bridge builders in the country,” said Sundt Business Development Manager Cade Rowley.
While the public is traveling on the main bridge, more work has to be completed. The rest of the year’s schedule includes removing the temporary bridge structure used for the detour, getting rid of work bridges and associated piling in the river, constructing a pedestrian bridge and trolley line on the west side, as well as finishing Phase 2 of a condo project on the east side. That work involves reconstructing small garages, storage buildings and a parking lot under the new bridge.
Even the wrap-up work has its share of unique challenges. The team will cut the old bridge into four 400-foot-long pieces and float them to Schnitzer Steel 10 miles downriver. Pilings must be removed during the in-water work window of July 10 to Oct. 15 so salmon swimming through the Willamette River won’t be disturbed.
To get a sense of the project scope, please take about four minutes to watch a time-lapse video recently posted by Multnomah County.
The Transcendental Brass Band was among entertainers at the opening.
October 28, 2015
Sundt’s work on Sellwood Bridge in Portland, Oregon took a major step toward completion earlier this month when the last major deck pour was completed on the main structure. This is a huge milestone for the project that allows the team to start sidewalks and parapet construction in preparation for opening early next spring.
The first deck pour was performed Oct. 20. Sundt and joint venture partner Slayden Construction are replacing the present Sellwood Bridge, a 2,000-foot structure that crosses the Willamette River.
In order to place a concrete deck, the specifications requires less than a 30 percent chance of rain before, during and after the pour, which required a 12-hour window. Finding this window in Portland during the winter is a challenge, requiring pours to start as early as 3 a.m. The specifications additionally require the concrete to be above 60 degrees, posing a problem when temperatures dropped into the 20s, requiring the concrete to be heated to remain within specifications.
Rather than rebuilding the bridge in sections and shifting traffic back and forth between the old structure and newly completed segments, the team created a ”shoofly” (detour) bridge to keep traffic flowing throughout the project. The approach involved lifting the old bridge deck and truss with hydraulic jacks and moving it to one side, then placing it on a set of temporary piers and connecting it to temporary approach spans so that traffic could continue using it while the new bridge is constructed.
September 2, 2015
Sellwood Bridge crosses the Willamette River in Portand, Oregon.
The first of 11 deck pours for the main span of the Sellwood Bridge was a self-performed success for Sundt on Oct. 20.
Sundt’s joint venture team self-performed the concrete work on the first of 11 pours on the bridge span.
The placement took 8.5 hours and involved 470 cubic yards of 4,000 PSI high-performance concrete with fiber. Fifteen craft employees used a 61-meter concrete pump to do the job.
The work required extensive coordination among the concrete supplier, concrete pump subcontractor, the joint venture quality control, Multnomah County quality assurance and Oregon Department of Transportation inspection teams.
Self-performing concrete construction enables Sundt to further ensure quality craftsmanship and save clients money.
Sundt and joint venture partner Slayden Construction are constructing the new Sellwood Bridge over the Willamette River in Portland, Oregon using a unique “shoofly” approach.The structure replaces a 2,000-foot-long, aging bridge.
The project is scheduled to wrap next year.
August 27, 2015
View of the Sellwood Bridge from the south, looking downstream.
Reconstruction of the 87-year-old Sellwood Bridge is moving along nicely despite the slightly hazy atmosphere caused by wildfires that often occur in the summer and fall in Oregon and Washington.The project, a joint venture of Sundt and Slayden Construction, is a key connection to downtown Portland because it is bounded by two significant natural features: the West Hills and the Willamette River.
“Tunnels and bridges are tremendously important to the city for commerce, workforce mobility, public safety, as well as maintaining a healthy and vibrant community,” said Sundt Project Manager Matt Fisher. “The new Sellwood Bridge will maintain an important connection between the city and the Sellwood District, as well as numerous other communities to the east.”
The old version of the bridge was the busiest two-lane bridge in Oregon, with an average daily traffic count of 30,000 vehicles. With that many cars and trucks using it each day, complete closures have been kept to a minimum during construction. The issue was managed with the introduction of a detour bridge in January 2013 that has held closures to a week, a tremendous accomplishment for the Sundt team and its partners.
The new bridge is scheduled to open in January with construction wrapping up in late 2016.
Our commitment to effect positive change on the environment and become one of the top green contractors in the nation is paying off. We recently advanced to 30th from 46th on the Engineering News-Record Top 100 Green Contractors list and to 26th from 40th on Building Design + Construction’s Green Building Giants list.
UC-Davis Tercero Student Housing Phase III.
A few of our sustainable projects this year include the LEED Silver certified University of Arizona Old Main Building renovation in Tucson, Ariz.; the LEED Platinum certified University of California, Davis Tercero Student Housing Phase III complex in Davis, Calif.; and the LEED Gold certified Butler Elementary/Puentes Middle School in El Paso, Texas. We are also completing construction of the Sellwood Bridge over the Willamette River in Portland, Ore., which is being built in accordance with the Greenroads International sustainability rating system for transportation projects.
“Our renewed corporate commitment has paid off, due largely to the efforts of the Sundt Sustainability Mentor Group, which includes representatives from all of Sundt’s business units,” said Dan Osterman, Sundt sustainability champion. “One area where our team has instituted significant change is in our reduction of generated waste at project sites. This year alone, our corporate standard of waste diversion increased to 75 percent, up from 50 percent on all Sundt projects.”
The Sundt Sustainability Mentor Group is a team of employees that promotes environmentally responsible practices at the company’s offices and jobsites. In addition to implementing green standards within our company, the mentorship program has increased Sundt’s involvement in sustainable organizations like the U.S. Green Building Council and Greenroads.
The group has also helped cultivate green expertise among our employee-owners, expanded our national profile as a green leader and focused our sustainability goals to achieve greater results and effect positive change in the environment.