A $1.5 billion, 49-mi. (78 km) stretch of road in central Texas is being constructed with the help of a host of Manitowoc equipment, including 555 and 777 lattice-boom crawler cranes and eight Grove RT760E rough-terrain cranes.
The contract, handled by a consortium of contractors known as Lone Star Infrastructure (LSI), is one of the largest highway projects currently taking place in the US. LSI comprises Fluor Corp, Balfour Beatty Construction, and T J Lambrecht Co.
The cranes have been provided by the Dallas and Houston branches of Manitowoc distributor H&E Equipment Services. H&E has a network of depots that stretch from Las Vegas, NV, in the west to Charlotte, NC, in the east and beyond.
The 200 ton (181 t) model 777 and 150 ton (136 t) model 555 have been used to handle bridge building and overpass work needed to connect with nearby I-35. Meanwhile, the 60 ton (55 t) Grove RTs have assisted with the bridge work and also act as pick and carry units to move materials around the job site.
With an ambitious goal to complete the turnpike by 2007, the roadway is being built through an innovative delivery system never before used in Texas.
Under a comprehensive developer agreement, LSI has been able to complete various phases of the project simultaneously, rather than the traditional process that divides funding, design and construction into steps.
This has meant a large number of cranes were required quickly and more are expected on site as work progresses.
The contract will require 30 million cu. yds. (23 million cu m) of dirt and 2.7 million sq. yds. (2 million sq m) of concrete pavement.
Some 350,000 sq. ft. (32,500 sq m) of steel will be used to build bridges and 5 million sq. ft. (465,000 sq m) of concrete will be poured to form overpasses.
In addition, 410,000 ft. (125,000 m) of concrete beams will be required during the construction process. The four-lane roadway is designed with limited frontage roads and will have toll facilities at multiple locations. CEG
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