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Old 05-20-2015, 09:51 AM
 
Location: Connecticut
24,570 posts, read 40,120,453 times
Reputation: 6942

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Quote:
Originally Posted by NewJeffCT View Post
I've lived in CT basically my entire life, and Connecticut almost never thinks boldly and long-term. Maybe because we're a small state between New York and Massachusetts, it gives us a "small" thinking mindset? We just half-ass our way through repairs/infrastructure, paying for things bit by bit as they become problems instead of trying to be proactive.
This was not always the case. In the 30's the construction of the Merritt Parkway was considered to be groundbreaking because of the wide median it had. After the war, Connecticut began building what was considered to be some of the most modern of highways that served its cities in the country. It really was not until the 70's that we began to cut back with Thomas Meskill and Ella Grasso as Governors. They did a lot to stop building modern highways in our state and we are still paying for that. After the Mianus River Bridge (thank you Ella) collapse things improved with repairing bridges but it still was not anything considered bold. Hopefully our politicians will see the long term value of Malloy's plan and run with it. Jay
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Old 05-20-2015, 12:36 PM
 
2,971 posts, read 2,022,271 times
Reputation: 1027
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayCT View Post
This was not always the case. In the 30's the construction of the Merritt Parkway was considered to be groundbreaking because of the wide median it had. After the war, Connecticut began building what was considered to be some of the most modern of highways that served its cities in the country. It really was not until the 70's that we began to cut back with Thomas Meskill and Ella Grasso as Governors. They did a lot to stop building modern highways in our state and we are still paying for that. After the Mianus River Bridge (thank you Ella) collapse things improved with repairing bridges but it still was not anything considered bold. Hopefully our politicians will see the long term value of Malloy's plan and run with it. Jay
To Jeff's point, that was reactive, and not proactive
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Old 05-20-2015, 01:06 PM
 
4,503 posts, read 4,172,103 times
Reputation: 1983
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr_250 View Post
I am all for more spending even if it includes tolls. I work in this industry so the more jobs out there the better opportunities I have. #beingselfish.

Our roads/bridges/rails are bad. I work mostly on bridges on major highways in CT and could tell you first hand they are failing. Infrastructure work does two things 1) provides very well paying jobs 2) creates jobs because the supply chain is so large.

CT is lacking in keeping up with transportation projects. We have old technology and old ways of doing business. Hopefully the method they are using on the Walk Project (Design-Build) will catch on and be used in CT. MI, for example, replaced 500 bridges in 2 years using 1 Prime Contractor and the DB method. Using lowest bid is outdated.

We need to watch out for what Congress does. CT said that if no solution is reached we have 6-months to fund the current projects we have. Let's hope it doesn't come to that.

PS-JayCT, not sure the link is correct or not. It brings me up Amazon hiring.
Could you tell us a bit more about this "DB" (Design-Build) method? 500 Bridges in two years sounds like an amazing total.

I liked what they did a few months back in Southington where they built the replacement bridge right next to the old one, then when it was finished, they shut down 84 for the weekend, got rid of the old bridge and moved the new bridge into place. One weekend shutdown instead of 2 years of construction slowdowns like was normally done.
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Old 05-20-2015, 01:15 PM
 
Location: Connecticut
24,570 posts, read 40,120,453 times
Reputation: 6942
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raider111 View Post
To Jeff's point, that was reactive, and not proactive
You are right. They had to react to years of neglect that budget cuts under Meskill and Grasso caused. You can also thank them for not completing Route 7, Route 25, Route 11 and the beltway around Hartford that really would have helped reduce traffic congestion a lot in the capitol city. Jay
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Old 05-20-2015, 01:21 PM
 
Location: Connecticut
24,570 posts, read 40,120,453 times
Reputation: 6942
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewJeffCT View Post
Could you tell us a bit more about this "DB" (Design-Build) method? 500 Bridges in two years sounds like an amazing total.

I liked what they did a few months back in Southington where they built the replacement bridge right next to the old one, then when it was finished, they shut down 84 for the weekend, got rid of the old bridge and moved the new bridge into place. One weekend shutdown instead of 2 years of construction slowdowns like was normally done.
Under a Design/Build project, the plans for the project are only brought to a preliminary level and it is left to the contractor to complete the design in the most cost-effective way he can find. A lot is left to the discretion of the contractor. The state will be using this on the Route 8 over Lindley Street bridge in Bridgeport next year. It won't necessarily reduce the construction time though.

The bridge in Southington was an Accelerated Bridge Construction project, where they constructed the superstructure offline and closed the highway for a weekend to demolish the existing bridge and move the new one into place. That project was considered to be highly successful so expect to see more similar projects in the future. The only problem is the equipment needed for that type of project is expensive and hard to find. Still it works very well. Jay
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Old 05-20-2015, 01:25 PM
 
2,505 posts, read 2,419,385 times
Reputation: 1391
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewJeffCT View Post
Could you tell us a bit more about this "DB" (Design-Build) method? 500 Bridges in two years sounds like an amazing total.

I liked what they did a few months back in Southington where they built the replacement bridge right next to the old one, then when it was finished, they shut down 84 for the weekend, got rid of the old bridge and moved the new bridge into place. One weekend shutdown instead of 2 years of construction slowdowns like was normally done.
My pleasure!

Attached is the story of 554 (to be exact) bridge replacements in 3.5 yrs (sorry, the kid that worked for them told me two). Either way, impressive especially for being all over the State.

The method used in Southington was called Accelerated Bridge Construction. While not a DB, it is a very widely used method to replace beams/decks not footings or abutments.

Here is the Wiki page on DB Design.

Basically, the way CT has it set up now is using lowest responsive responsible bidder. The DOT has their engineers draw up a job and issue 100% drawings to contractors. The contractors take those drawings, estimate and bid on what they have in front of them i.e. the drawings. Job gets started many changes come about, change orders come and the project cost increases. Happens every job.

DB works by the State saying "here is what we think we might want" (called 30% drawings). We want to hire a team which includes a Designer/Engineer/Contractor to essentially build as they draw. So they do this LONG process and they pick a team, not a contractor. The teams gives a price and barring any major issues such as boring issues or a total change in DOT Vision the budget of the job comes in very closed to proposed. This is because as they build the engineer and contractor foresee any problems and they are resolved right there by the team. In the end it saves money and time.

DB is huge in other States. CT is using this method on the Walk Bridge. They have a job going now on Route 8 using this Method, I believe it's the first in the State.
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Old 05-20-2015, 01:28 PM
 
2,505 posts, read 2,419,385 times
Reputation: 1391
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayCT View Post
Under a Design/Build project, the plans for the project are only brought to a preliminary level and it is left to the contractor to complete the design in the most cost-effective way he can find. A lot is left to the discretion of the contractor. The state will be using this on the Route 8 over Lindley Street bridge in Bridgeport next year. It won't necessarily reduce the construction time though.

The bridge in Southington was an Accelerated Bridge Construction project, where they constructed the superstructure offline and closed the highway for a weekend to demolish the existing bridge and move the new one into place. That project was considered to be highly successful so expect to see more similar projects in the future. The only problem is the equipment needed for that type of project is expensive and hard to find. Still it works very well. Jay
Believe it or not, the company that does the heavy lifting is based out of Middletown. That project only cost $6.5M which is low compared to if they had to do night work.
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Old 05-20-2015, 06:17 PM
 
Location: Hartford, Connecticut
2,685 posts, read 1,997,547 times
Reputation: 2074
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayCT View Post
You are right. They had to react to years of neglect that budget cuts under Meskill and Grasso caused. You can also thank them for not completing Route 7, Route 25, Route 11 and the beltway around Hartford that really would have helped reduce traffic congestion a lot in the capitol city. Jay
Am I the only one who is happy they didn't add the beltway around Hartford? Especially around West Hartford to Bloomfield. Interstate 291 was the most logical because it didn't cut through reservoirs and busy neighborhoods. It was just farms and it wasn't a highway until they upgraded it. The traffic congestion wouldn't be as bad if they added the beltway but much of the problems come from the poor design on the highways that run through Hartford. The fact they did nothing to fix the ones we have already and instead added more roads that will eventually cost us more. We needed to be more proactive because study phases weren't as important as they are now.

Last thing I noticed...do you think it's necessary to build a beltway around Hartford in this day and age because the Hartford area isn't growing as fast as it was. I don't think spending billions of dollars would be beneficial when we aren't growing as fast as places that desperately need a beltway. Austin needs an outer ring because of how fast it's population is booming. More cars equals more people. New highways aren't in high demand right now as others places around the country. The only reason why I wish we had a beltway is because when they do the highway construction in Hartford, where would all the traffic go?
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Old 05-20-2015, 07:32 PM
 
4,503 posts, read 4,172,103 times
Reputation: 1983
I think a beltway would have been good, but it would not have been as easy to put around Bloomfield/West Hartford as it would have through South Windsor/Manchester.

A lot of bigger cities have loops or beltways around them, so why not Hartford? While the city itself is not huge, the population density makes the Hartford Metro Area pretty large and a beltway would have helped ease congestion.
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Old 05-20-2015, 07:52 PM
 
Location: Midtown
1,300 posts, read 745,188 times
Reputation: 915
Thanks for posting this Jay. This short sighted thinking troubles me despite no longer being a CT resident. We have the same stupid narrow minded thinking over here with Christie. All too often the GOP camp seems to be trying to win popular support here and now while screwing over future generations by just rolling the ball forward when it comes to things like healthcare or our crumbling highway system.

My personal favorite of late: An Amtrak crash partly due to the fact the PTC wasn't active for the direction of travel when train 188 derailed. PTC was mandated for Amtrak by congress but few bothered to help figure out how Amtrak was to fund it all.
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