September 2, 2015
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.
January 14, 2015
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.
November 5, 2014
Delivery of the steel arches is being accomplished using barges and tugboats via the Columbia and Willamette rivers over 20 nautical miles.
Photo courtesy of the Oregon Department of Transportation
What’s that floating toward the Sellwood Bridge project in Portland, Oregon? Barges transporting the giant steel arches that will support the new bridge being constructed by Sundt and joint venture partner Slayden Construction for Multnomah County.
Designed as an open steel deck arch structure, the new Sellwood Bridge will complement its surroundings while providing ample space for all modes of travel. There will be two vehicle lanes in each direction on the west end, which narrow to one lane in each direction on the east end. In addition, it will have two, six-foot-wide bike lanes and two, 12-foot-wide sidewalks.
The team is using a “shoofly” (detour) approach to complete this project. They lifted the old bridge deck and truss with hydraulic jacks and moved it to one side, then placed it on a set of temporary piers and connected it to temporary approach spans so traffic can continue to use it while the new bridge is constructed.
August 4, 2014
Slayen/Sundt poured 1,420 cubic yards of concrete at pier 5 – a key milestone in the 47-month project.
The Sellwood Bridge project in Portland, Oregon achieved two important milestones last month when Sundt and joint venture partner Slayden Construction placed nearly 3,000 cubic yards of concrete at the foundations of piers 4 and 5, located in the Willamette River. The concrete pours represent significant achievements in the 47-month, $216 million project to replace the aging bridge with a new structure that is wider, safer and seismically sound.
Discharge water cascades from the cooling system the team developed to control the temperature of the concrete as it cured.
The concrete milestones also represent impressive accomplishments in value engineering and ingenuity. Piers 4 and 5 are massive concrete structures comprised of reinforcing steel and 6000 psi concrete. Slayden/Sundt’s own workforce used specialized concrete placement techniques to control the excessive – and potentially damaging – heat that was created during the curing process.
An up-close look at the cooling system’s water tubes, manifold and valves
“As fresh concrete hardens, or ‘cures,’ heat is generated as a byproduct of the chemical reaction,” explains Sundt Project Engineer Matt Fisher. “Due to the very large mass of concrete at piers 4 and 5, this ‘heat of hydration’ is generated faster than it can naturally dissipate, which could result in excessive internal temperatures and possible damage to the concrete.”
As a solution to this problem, the team designed an internal water-cooling system to remove the excess heat from the concrete. Water pumps, manifolds, intake screens, valves, flow meters and thousands of feet of flexible plastic water tubing were carefully placed throughout the concrete formwork. After the concrete was placed at the piers, cool water was continuously pumped through the plastic tubes, which in turn carried away the excess heat from the concrete. Remote temperature sensors were also placed throughout the fresh concrete to collect temperature data. As the concrete cured, and the internal temperatures climbed, this data was constantly monitored to confirm the performance of the cooling system and to ensure a quality product.
Artist’s rendering of Sellwood Bridge as it will look when it’s complete in 2016
Extensice planning was required to successfully deliver and install the massive concrete girders in the constricted space.
Motorists in Portland, Oregon have recently witnessed the exciting completion of two major milestones on the new Sellwood Bridge – a much-anticipated transportation construction project that will efficiently transport motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians across the Willamette River when it is complete in 2016. Learn more here.