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R.E. Purcell Construction Co. Begins U.S. 41/SR 45 Work

Tue July 13, 2010 - Southeast Edition
Brenda Ruggiero


Crews work on the storm water ponds that are being created to handle the drainage.
Crews work on the storm water ponds that are being created to handle the drainage.
Crews work on the storm water ponds that are being created to handle the drainage. Clearing the right-of-way for the new roadway. Progress Energy staff relocating power lines to new poles.

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) and Pasco County are working together to coordinate a project to reconstruct a portion of U.S. 41/SR 45 from the intersection of Tower Road to the intersection of Connerton Boulevard and the future Pasco County Ridge Road Connection. The coordination came about because the improvements were identified as a needed project by the Pasco County Metropolitan Planning Organization.

The $14.8 million contract was awarded to R.E. Purcell Construction Company Inc., and is under the direction of project manager Fred Sumner.

Work began on Aug. 30, 2009 and is expected to take about two years to complete. It is currently on schedule, with about 50 people working on the project daily. This includes the prime contractor, sub contractors, utility personnel and inspection staff.

The project covers 2.8 mi. (4.5 km) of roadway, and the contract calls for the widening of the existing two-lane road into a four-lane divided road with medians. A 12-ft. (3.6 m) multi-use path will be built on the east side of the road. In addition, the existing traffic signals will be replaced with mast arms, and six stormwater ponds will be constructed.

In addition to the four 12-ft. lanes, the new roadway will consist of a 46-ft. (14 m) wide grass median, 12-ft. outside shoulders and 8-ft. (2.4 m) inside shoulders.

“U.S. 41 is an important regional roadway connecting numerous cities along Florida’s west coast,” explained an FDOT spokesperson. “The improvement of this roadway section in Pasco County will improve traffic flow between Tampa and Brookesville.

According to Kristen Carson of FDOT, the high water table presents some unique challenges and possible dewatering requirements for the project.

“In addition, there are multiple underground utilities that will need to work in concert with the prime contractor to ensure the project stays on schedule,” she said. “Maintaining access to businesses during construction will also be a challenge due to the amount of work that will be going on at the same time throughout the project.”

As of mid-December, 60 percent of the clearing and grubbing had been completed in the pond areas.

Throughout the entire project, estimates are for a total of 130,000 cu. yds. (99,392 cu m) of excavation; 200,000 cu. yds. (152,910 cu m) of embankment; 230,000 sq. yds. (192,309 sq m) of stabilization; 34,000 tons (30,844 t) of asphalt; 36,000 sq. yds. (30,100 sq m) of concrete removal; and 12,000 sq. yds. (10,033 sq m) of milling.

Major subcontractors include D.E. Britton, Tampa, Fla., for directional bore; Highway Technologies, Clearwater, Fla. for MOT; Bay Mulch Inc., Tampa, Fla., for clearing and grubbing; Southern Land Services, Land O’Lakes, Fla., for erosion control; and World Haulers Inc., Tampa, Fla., for fill and hauling. CEG