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Mon March 16, 2009 - Northeast Edition
A new interchange is making steady progress in Montgomery County, Md.
The project involves MD 355 at Montrose/Randolph Road in Rockville. The $47.2 million Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) job is funded through a combination of federal and state monies. It began in the summer of 2008 and is approximately 40 percent complete and on target for a late fall 2010 completion date. The contract was awarded to Concrete General Inc., Gaithersburg, Md., under the direction of Oliver Roelkey, project superintendent.
According to Kimberly Frum, district community liaison, SHA district 3, the project involves relocating existing Randolph Road slightly south to align it with the recently completed Montrose Parkway. In addition, a new interchange will be constructed along Rockville Pike at Montrose Parkway and the relocated Randolph Road.
“The new interchange will eliminate the current traffic signal and carry Rockville Pike to travel over Montrose Parkway/relocated Randolph Road,” Frum said. “SHA will upgrade the existing sidewalk to meet current ADA specifications and construct a new multi-use trail that will connect existing hiker-biker trails on the north and east side of the proposed interchange. Other work includes new medians and landscaping.”
The completed project will maintain three northbound and three southbound lanes on MD 355, and the new relocated Montrose/Randolph Road will carry two lanes in each direction.
Frum noted that the construction is necessary to improve safety and traffic flow at the intersection of MD 355 and Randolph/Montrose Roads. On average, 55,000 vehicles travel through the intersection on a daily basis. The volume is expected to surpass 98,000 by 2030.
Several challenges were noted by crews on the job, including utility relocation involving at least five telecommunication companies, water and gas relocation and storm drain construction. The depth of the current storm drain trenches is 25 ft. (7.6 m).
“Other challenges involved were construction of the temporary detour road used to shift existing traffic along MD 355 so crews can work on bridge construction without impacting the traveling public, keeping the public informed of the project progress and meeting project deadlines,” Frum said.
In addition, the location of the project is in a congested and developed section of Montgomery County, so work must accommodate many pedestrians as well as motorists.
As of the end of January, the project had involved 160,000 cu. yds. (122,329 cu m) of dirt excavation and removal and approximately 3,000 cu. yds. (2,294 cu m) of existing concrete/HMA removal. In addition, approximately 2,400 cu. yds. (1,835 cu m) of concrete had been used in the new bridge, and approximately 2,500 cu. yds. (1.911 cu m) of concrete had been added to new sidewalks, curb and gutter areas, and the median. There were approximately 178 tons (161 t) of rebar in the bridge and approximately 1,050 tons (952 t) of piling in the footers. The project also involved 3.32 lane mi. (5.3 km) of new roadway.
Frum noted that the new Montrose Parkway is being constructed approximately 18 ft. (5.5 m) under the new MD 355 bridge, which is being built at existing elevation/grade. Other unique features of the project include the construction of a temporary detour road to lesson the traffic impact during the bridge construction and the amount of work taking place in such a congested metropolitan area.
During major excavation, the project involves up to 50 tri-axle dump trucks per day. The equipment list also includes two Caterpillar 345Bs, a Link-Belt HC218 with 1632 Delmag diesel pile hammer, a Grove 50-ton (45 t) all-terrain crane, Volvo A25 and A35 end dump trucks, a Caterpillar 12G grader, a Caterpillar D-5G dozer, and an Ingersoll Rand SD100 roller.
Major subcontractors include W.F. Wilson, Elkridge, Md., for water line relocation; Midlantic Pilin Inc., Glen Rock, Pa., for pile driving; Traffic Systems Inc., Harmans, Md., for lighting and signal work; R.F. Kline, Frederick, Md., for HMA paving; and Bradley Concrete Inc., Laurel, Md., for sidewalk, curb, and gutter construction/replacement. CEG