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El Paso District Wins Design, Construction Awards for I-10

Tue February 21, 2023 - West Edition #5
TxDOT


The $100 million highway reconstruction project added connectors to a series of highway interchanges along the I-10, I-110, U.S. 54 and State Loop 375 corridors.
(Photo courtesy of TxDOT.)
The $100 million highway reconstruction project added connectors to a series of highway interchanges along the I-10, I-110, U.S. 54 and State Loop 375 corridors. (Photo courtesy of TxDOT.)
The $100 million highway reconstruction project added connectors to a series of highway interchanges along the I-10, I-110, U.S. 54 and State Loop 375 corridors.
(Photo courtesy of TxDOT.) The design and construction team was recognized for this project, specifically TxDOT’s Antonio Santana, TxDOT’s Jorge Oregel and Rudy Elias of Sundt.
(Photo courtesy of TxDOT.) The design, environmental consideration and construction in a constrained area near the largest U.S./Mexico Port of Entry in El Paso required intricate synchronization and cross-country collaboration.(Photo courtesy of TxDOT.)

The "We Build Texas" project awards were presented at the Texas Transportation Forum in Austin and TxDOT's El Paso District received two of six honors for the I-10 Connect project in the design and the construction categories.

The $100 million highway reconstruction project added connectors to a series of highway interchanges along the I-10, I-110, U.S. 54 and State Loop 375 corridors impacting international and local travel to improve connectivity on the existing roadway network. The design, environmental considerations and construction in a constrained area near the largest U.S./Mexico Port of Entry in El Paso required intricate synchronization and cross-country collaboration. Both the design team and construction team were recognized for this project, specifically TxDOT's Antonio Santana, TxDOT's Jorge Oregel and Rudy Elias of contractor Sundt.

The project expanded U.S. 54, I-10, I-110, and U.S. 62 and included eight bridge replacements, one railroad overpass, five bridge widenings and two new direct connectors. The project widened I-110, provided separate truck lanes for southbound traffic going to Mexico and provided multi-modal improvements along U.S. 62, which experiences more than 1 million pedestrian crossings per year.

The design team was presented with the challenge of adding an elevated structure in the urban core of the city and widening existing structures while minimizing right-of-way acquisition. The construction team was challenged with minimizing interference with international traffic at the second busiest inland port in the state. They also worked within a very constrained area surrounded by businesses, residents, schools, a church, a zoo and a national park.

Innovation in bilingual outreach and technology was critical to the success of the transformational project.

In addition to traffic improvements —including a redesign to redirect 18-wheeler traffic per public recommendations — the project team also worked to preserve culturally significant landmarks, such as the city's first Hispanic school in the neighborhood park, during the demolition and new construction of bridges.

Accolades for the I-10 Connect project include:

  • The 2019 TxDOT Environmental Achievement Award. The award recognizes exemplary projects and programs that meet transportation objectives while simultaneously going above and beyond routine procedures to protect and enhance the natural and human environment;
  • The 2018 ITE Joint Western States and Texas Conference for TCP innovation and implementation of ITS and Smart Work Zone techniques; and
  • Other "We Build Texas" project award recipients include the San Antonio, Waco and Yoakum and Brownwood districts.
About Awards

The "Texas Project Award" program was initiated in March of 1987 by Raymond E. Stotzer Jr. to recognize Texas Department of Transportation and contractor personnel who have cooperated to overcome major construction problems in a non-disruptive manner. Rebranded in 2020, the "We Build Texas" project award program embraces these principles and expands them, emphasizing the We Build Texas initiative launched in March 2017 to foster good partnering techniques, positive contract relationships and best practices. In addition, this program recognizes individuals responsible for the plans, specifications and estimates (PS&E) design of projects that resulted in no or only minor construction problems. Like the Texas Project Awards before it, this program also considers small projects and projects completed with a degree of quality far beyond specification requirements.

Construction Award: given to project engineers or chief inspectors and project managers who used a high degree of cooperation in completing a complex or challenging project, solving one or more major problems, or completing work that provides for quality far beyond specification requirements. This award is not designed for the engineer in charge of an area office, but rather the individual with actual overall contract compliance oversight.

Design Award: given to TxDOT personnel responsible for the development of plans and specifications — or overseeing the development of plans and specifications by a consultant — on a complex or challenging project that resulted in no or only minor construction problems during completion.




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