MidMountain, Scarsella, KLB, KRCI, West win WSDOT/AGC awards

WSDOT and AGC announced the 2017 Partnership for Excellence in Contract Administration Award winners during the AGC/WSDOT 2018 Annual Meeting on Jan. 4 in Tacoma. Paul Mayo, co-chair of the AGC/WSDOT Liaison Committee (photo, far left) presented the awards along with Keith Metcalf, WSDOT Deputy Secretary (far right).

Chris Christopher, WSDOT’s State Construction Engineer, presented the awards. "These awards recognize and encourage extraordinary achievements by the Contractor/WSDOT partnership responsible for delivering transportation projects in a timely, professional, and responsive manner while also considering the needs of others who are affected by the project," Christopher said.


Winning projects

  • Eastern Washington, less than $3 million: I-90 Third Avenue Bridge Special Repair. WSDOT: Chad Simonson’s Project Office. Contractor: John Brueher, West Company, Inc. (This project was selected as the Overall Eastside Winner – click here for video.)

The team replaced a 5’ section of existing bridge deck and rebuilt the pavement seat to support a new approach slab for the Third Avenue Bridge in Spokane that failed over time due to compression at the joint during freeze thaw cycles. The project also included new PCCP panels, expansion joints, compression seals and HMA shoulders. After the first phase of the bridge deck and approach slab demolition was complete, it was discovered that the end diaphragm wall was in worse shape than expected, and would require additional work and materials. West Company and WSDOT worked 24/7 to find a solution to the unanticipated bridge diaphragm condition, and open the roadway to traveling public before regional events and a major holiday weekend.


  • Eastern Washington projects $3 million to $10 million: SR-20, Loup Loup Pass, Emergency Repair. WSDOT: Dan Lewis’ Project Office. Contractor: Pat King, KRCI, LLC.

In April of 2017, heavy rains and snowmelt caused mudslides and debris flows in north central Washington, resulting in extensive roadway damage and the closure of SR 20 to the traveling public. This project was an active emergency site throughout construction and the damage required full roadway rebuilds at two locations. After construction began, a flash flood deposited numerous boulders, trees and mud across another section roadway, damaging two more culverts.  KRCI and WSDOT worked together to rebuild the roadway as efficiently as possible and open SR 20 in 41 working days.  


  • Western Washington, less than $3 million: SR-18, Green River Bridge Vic-Emergency Slide Repair. WSDOT: Mike Askarian’s Project Office. Contractor: Aiesh Ragih, KLB Construction, Inc.

This contract stabilized the existing slope adjacent to westbound SR-18 which failed due to a landslide. KLB had to remove the slide debris and stabilized the slope by backfilling the void with quarry spalls. The contractor shortened the project completion time by more than two weeks by reducing the anticipated number of work shifts from 18 to one weekend of continuous work, and using an excavator with a 72-foot boom arm. Using this large excavator with a bucket capable of moving 12 tons of material at a time enabled KLB operators to quickly load trucks and take dirt from the entire length of the slope while positioned safely at the bottom of the hill.


  • Western Washington, $3 million to $10 million: I-90 North Fork Issaquah Creek Fish Passage. WSDOT: Dave Lindberg’s Project Office. Contractor: Mike Wilson, Scarcella Brothers, Inc.

This project replaced seven fish passage barriers, created by undersized culverts, with two fish passable culverts and created 1,274 linear feet of new stream channel. The two new passable culverts consisted of a 26-foot-wide precast box culvert and a 12-foot-wide arch pipe that were installed beneath East Lake Sammamish Parkway. After realigning the new stream channel utilizing the new culverts, the existing seven culverts were abandoned. Scarcella proposed installing both culverts within a 5.5-day closure if they could get approval to install one of the culverts by open cut instead of the planned jacking method. WSDOT approved the alternative method and the contractor was able to install both culverts and complete required utility work within the time allowed, opening the roadway to the traveling public two days early.


  • Western Washington, greater than $10 million: I-5, southbound South 320th to Duwamish River Bridge Concrete Pavement Rehab.  WSDOT: Mike Askarian’s Project Office. Contractor: Thomas Nielson, MidMountain Contractors, Inc.  (This project was selected as the Overall Westside winner – click here for video).

This contract rehabilitated nearly 14 miles of southbound I-5 by replacing 238 broken concrete panels, grinding 32 lane miles of concrete pavement, replacing aging and worn bridge expansion joints, repaving on/off ramps, and repaving 2.7 miles of concrete roadway using Crack Seat and Overlay (CSOL). This is the first time the Northwest Region has used the CSOL method of rehabilitating concrete on such a heavily traveled highway. Extensive coordination of resources and subcontractor schedules by MidMountain allowed most of the paving to be completed when I-5 was reduced to two open lanes for three different 55-hour closures.


Thank-you to our award judges: Tom Madden, WSDOT (retired); Charlie McCoy, Retired Contractor; Ben Minnick, Construction Editor for the Daily Journal of Commerce.