November 5, 2014
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
July 1, 2014
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.
May 19, 2014
NAME: Garhett Jurgens
WORKSITE: Sellwood Bridge – Portland, Oregon
MAJOR: Construction Management
SCHOOL: Colorado State University
What drew you to Sundt?
I saw an opportunity to get away from western Colorado and experience the atmosphere of a successful employee-owned company.
What does a typical day at Sundt look like for you?
It starts out every morning with a superintendent meeting, where everyone discusses what their game plan is for the day. After that, I usually get assigned work by one of the project engineers where I’ve helped with RFIs, quantity take-offs, surveying, and other areas where I can throw in a hand.
What have you learned through your Sundt internship about the real world of construction that surprised you?
I’ve never been involved with a project as intricate as the Sellwood Bridge. The amount of coordination that is required because of the complexity of the job baffles me.
How have you benefited by working with a mentor every day?
Not only have I gained a basic understanding of how a structure like the Sellwood Bridge is constructed, but I’ve learned a lot about how to make life enjoyable on a construction project. Yes, things can get stressful for the team, but they all seem like they embrace the pressure, and roll with the punches when things get hard. It is inspirational in a sense.
Best book read recently:
Black Hawk Down
App you couldn’t live without?
Probably my Fox News App. I’m always keeping up with what is going on in the world.
Favorite quote/inspirational saying?
“The only easy day was yesterday.” – The Navy SEALS
What advice would you give for the future interns of Sundt?
May 5, 2014
Members of the Sellwood Bridge project team placed 27 pre-stressed, precast concrete girders last week for the new bridge over the Willamette River. In this photo, Girder “9G5” is being hoisted into position on Span #9.
The Sellwood Bridge project in Portland, Oregon reached a major milestone last week. Sundt and joint venture partner Slayden Construction set 27 precast, pre-stressed concrete girders to support the future bridge, which will span the Willamette River and replace an old, outdated structure.
Each of the twenty girders erected between spans six through nine is approximately 105 feet long and weighs more than 37 tons. Seven, 30-foot-long slab girders (each weighing approximately 35 tons) were set over span 10, which has a different configuration than the other spans to allow the railroad tracks the pass beneath it without altering the profile of the roadway.
The bridge was closed for four days while the girders were delivered and moved into place with the help of two new cranes belonging to Sundt, along with assistance from a specialty crane subcontractor, Ness & Campbell. The bridge was reopened to traffic on Friday afternoon. (The girders for spans six through nine were set by Sundt’s Link-Belt HSL218 Crawler Crane, and the span 10 girders were set by our Link-Belt RTC8065 Hydro.)
Two cranes working in tandem to install a 67,000-pound precast, pre-stressed concrete girder on the east approach of the new Sellwood Bridge.
“Planning the lifting and installation of the girders was very complex,” said Sundt Project Engineer Matt Fisher. “Crane size, crane location, ground preparation, girder delivery proximity, and girder delivery sequence were investigated well in advance, and the crane positions and movements were planned to optimize the safety and efficiency of the girder installation operation. The delivery vehicles used a specialized trailer with remote-control rear-trailer steering that allowed the driver to steer the rear of the trailer around obstacles and through difficult turns. This was especially useful when the girders traveled through the old, narrow streets of the Portland’s Sellwood District on approach to the Sellwood Bridge.”
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 the project, in which the old bridge deck and truss was lifted with hydraulic jacks and moved to one side, then placed on a set of temporary piers and connected to temporary approach spans so traffic can continue to use it while the new bridge is constructed.
The bridge construction project is scheduled to be complete in 2016.
Sundt and joint venture partner Slayden Construction are replacing the aging Sellwood Bridge over the Willamette River in Portland, Oregon. The existing bridge is nearly 90 years old and does not comply with current seismic standards. Photo courtesy of Image Engineering Photography.
Last week a group of experts came together on National Public Radio’s Diane Rehm Show to discuss the challenges posed by our nation’s aging infrastructure. With more than 60,000 bridges in the U.S. in a state of serious decline, the big question on everyone minds is how to pay for the necessary replacements and repairs.
Mike Hoover, Sundt’s Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, agrees with many transportation construction and policy experts: the creation of a highway reauthorization bill is critical. Federal funding supports more than half of states’ transportation construction, but the existing bill, MAP-21, expires on September 30. At the same time, the highway trust fund, which uses gas taxes to fund many federal highway programs in every state, will be depleted by the end of August if Congress doesn’t act.
What are the obstacles to the passage of a new bill? Can public-private partnerships provide a funding solution? Are there other creative funding mechanisms being proposed and considered? Click here to listen to the show to and find out what the panelists (listed below) and callers had to say.
Robert Puentes, senior fellow, Metropolitan Policy Program, The Brookings Institution
Chris Edwards, economist and editor of DownsizingGovernment.org, Cato Institute
Fawn Johnson, correspondent, National Journal
Phineas Baxandall, federal budget and tax analyst, U.S. Public Interest Research Group
Patrick Jones, executive director and CEO, International Bridge, Tunnel & Turnpike Association (IBTTA)