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Fast-Growing Frisco Expands Main Street to Six Lanes

Tue July 17, 2018 - West Edition #15
Jennifer Rupp – CEG Correspondent


Installation of 30 ft. ductile iron water line beneath future inside lane of Main Street.
Installation of 30 ft. ductile iron water line beneath future inside lane of Main Street.
Installation of 30 ft. ductile iron water line beneath future inside lane of Main Street. Installation of 8 ft. 2x4 duct bank beneath future inside lane of Main Street. Texas Sterling preps the future inside lanes of Main Street. Water line tee connecting new 30 ft. water line to existing 36 ft. water line. Tunnel boring machine used to bore electric duct bank beneath roadway intersection.

Frisco's expanding population is driving efforts to widen a section of Main Street from four to six lanes while improving storm drainage and a water line. The project spans approximately 3 mi. from FM 423 to Dallas Parkway.

The city of Frisco project will coincide with the Brazos Electric project involving burying an electrical transmission line under Main Street from FM 423 to Legacy Drive. In September 2017, the Frisco City Council approved the $26.6 million capital project.

“This project accelerates our ongoing efforts to get Frisco moving again,” said Mayor Jeff Cheney. “Both the city of Frisco and Brazos save time and money by pairing these construction projects together. We recognize, the construction zone may cause frustration; however, we know the reconstruction of Main Street is vital to easing traffic congestion, promoting drivers' safety and managing our city's future growth.”

In 2000, the population in Frisco was 33,000. By 2016, it had grown to 163,000, and by the year 2030, the city planning department estimates it could reach 370,000 residents.

Before construction began in October 2017, Frisco Parks and Recreation relocated median trees to nearby Frisco parks, primarily Frisco Commons and Harold Bacchus Community Parks.

“We're going to do everything we can to preserve as many out here as we can,” said Brian Moen, assistant director of engineering services/transportation. “Once the road work is complete, we'll put in new landscaping, which includes planting more trees.”

Following tree relocation, crews dug a trench in the median to make way for the electric and water lines and followed with curb removal in preparation for roadway improvements. Street lighting will be impacted, too, during the construction project. While engineers will work to restore lighting when possible, it will be very challenging, noted Jason Brodigan, assistant director of engineering services.

New street lights, landscaping and a signal at Majestic Garden will be installed. Existing signals will also be improved. city engineers said the Main Street project will improve water distribution while increasing roadway safety and capacity.

Texas Sterling Construction, headquartered in Houston, received the contract for its bid of $26.6 million in September. In addition to road widening, the project includes all the preliminary infrastructure required for future underground electric transmission lines as well as more than 14,000 linear ft. of water distribution lines.

Joe Cutillo, Sterling's chief executive officer, said, “We are pleased to have been selected by the city of Frisco to increase the capacity of an existing section of Main Street. The population of Frisco, Texas, continues to grow rapidly, and this project will help ease traffic congestion and make driving conditions safer. This project leverages our capabilities in both municipal road construction and underground water transmission and is a great strategic fit for our Texas Business.”

Sterling is tackling Main Street in three segments: FM 423 to Teel Parkway; Teel Parkway to Legacy Drive; and Legacy Drive to Dallas Parkway. There are approximately 58,000 cu. yds. of excavation and 7,000 cu. yds. of embankment required for the project. This does not include the amount of excavation and spoils from the installation of 14,000 linear ft. of ductile iron water line and 13,000 linear ft. of electric duct bank. Asphalt use on this project is minimal at 240 tons and is used in only one small location. However, the widening of the existing concrete road from four to six lanes requires about 69,000 cu. yds. of concrete pavement.

According to Sterling and its subcontractor, Larrett Inc. of Kaufman, they rented zero swing track machines to perform trenching and excavation in the narrow confines of the work zone within the median and adjacent to live traffic. Electric duct bank boring was performed using an Ackerman 5000 tunnel boring machine. With close coordination and regular communication between the city of Frisco and Texas Sterling staff, project managers have been able to work through all issues without any delays or significant added costs.

“This project will give us the ability to accommodate Frisco's future growth,” said Moen. “It's going to take everyone's cooperation and understanding to get through this project safely and successfully.”

Construction is expected to be finished in spring 2019.

CEG