TxDOT's $158M 'Go-10' Project Adds New Lanes in El Paso

Go 10 is an infrastructure reconstruction of Interstate 10 on El Paso's Westside. Its purpose is to improve traffic flow, vehicle capacity and safety along the much-used portion of I-10.

📅   Tue August 15, 2017 - West Edition #17
Chuck Harvey


Interstate 10 in El Paso will add 5.75 mi. of collector-distributor lanes from North Mesa Street to Executive Center Boulevard as part of a $158-million project called “Go 10.”
(TxDOT, El Paso District photo)
Interstate 10 in El Paso will add 5.75 mi. of collector-distributor lanes from North Mesa Street to Executive Center Boulevard as part of a $158-million project called “Go 10.” (TxDOT, El Paso District photo)
Interstate 10 in El Paso will add 5.75 mi. of collector-distributor lanes from North Mesa Street to Executive Center Boulevard as part of a $158-million project called “Go 10.”
(TxDOT, El Paso District photo) Go 10 is an infrastructure reconstruction of Interstate 10 on El Paso’s Westside.
(TxDOT, El Paso District photo)
Go 10’s purpose is to improve traffic flow, vehicle capacity and safety along the much-used portion of I-10.
(TxDOT, El Paso District photo) Construction of the project started in April 2015 and should be completed by April 2019.
(TxDOT, El Paso District photo) Go 10 improvements are designed to increase capacity while improving traffic flow and reducing accidents.
(TxDOT, El Paso District photo) As part of the project, 29 bridges will be built including 14 that extend over drainage ways.
(TxDOT, El Paso District photo) In addition to the new connector-distributor lanes, the project includes improved direct-connector ramps.
(TxDOT, El Paso District photo) Go 10 is the largest traditionally-delivered design-bid-build project that the Texas Department of Transportation, El Paso District, has done to date.
(TxDOT, El Paso District photo)

Interstate 10 in El Paso will add 5.75 mi. of collector-distributor lanes from North Mesa Street to Executive Center Boulevard as part of a $158-million project called “Go 10.”

Go 10 is an infrastructure reconstruction of Interstate 10 on El Paso's Westside. Its purpose is to improve traffic flow, vehicle capacity and safety along the much-used portion of I-10.

Go 10 is the largest traditionally-delivered design-bid-build project that the Texas Department of Transportation, El Paso District, has done to date.

Construction of the project started in April 2015 and should be completed by April 2019.

In addition to the new connector-distributor lanes, the project includes improved direct-connector ramps at Paisano Drive; intermittent addition I-10 main lanes in both directions; and reconfiguration of ramps and overpasses at Sunland Park Drive, Resler Drive and North Mesa Street.

Connector-distributor lanes are high-speed roadways that collect and distribute vehicles and in doing so, reduce the need for weaving and merging on the interstate mainlines.

As part of the project, 29 bridges will be built including 14 that extend over drainage ways.

Four Work Zones

The project is divided into four work zones. The first zone includes construction of the collector-distributor lanes from North Mesa Street to Executive Center Boulevard and direct connector from southbound Resler Drive to eastbound collector-distributor lanes.

Zone 1 also features reconstruction of the I-10 and U.S. 85 Interchange and addition of new lanes to the eastbound and westbound main lanes.

Zone 2 includes construction of U-turns at North Mesa Street and the building of a direct connector from southbound Sunland Park Drive to the eastbound collector-distributor lanes.

Zone 3 includes construction of Sunland Park Drive on-ramps and off-ramps, building of eastbound and westbound collector-distributor lanes and improvements to Sunland Park Drive adjacent to I-10.

In zone 4, workers will construct North Mesa Street from north of I-10 to south of I-10, including the adjacent ramps. They also will construct westbound collector-distributor lanes near Resler Drive and the ramp to Resler Drive.

In addition, they will construct westbound collector-distributor lanes under Sunland Park Drive and build turnabouts at North Mesa Street and at Sunland Park Drive.

Other Go 10 jobs include upgrades to a portion of North Main Street and portions of north and south Desert Boulevard frontage roads including improved turning movements and better drainage.

Aesthetics are an important part of the project: bridge caps will include a sun design; retaining walls will feature a mountain and sun design in locations where they are visible to motorists; and landscaping includes various xeriscaping with pavers, rock and some native vegetation.

Funding for the project is primarily from state and federal sources. Part of the amount came from El Paso County's 2014 $10 increase on vehicle registration fees.

Go 10 is overseen by the Texas Department of Transportation, Border West Expressway, El Paso Metropolitan Planning Organization and the city and county of El Paso, with TxDOT as the project manager.

Primary contractor for Go 10 is Zurich Insurance of Schaumburg, Ill. Sundt Construction of Tucson, Ariz., is the main subcontractor responsible for performing and managing all construction activities. Subcontractors hired by Sundt are considered second and third tier on the construction ladder.

So far, 25 subcontractors have been hired for the project. Major subcontractors include Tri-State Electric Co. of Vinton, Texas; Traffic Control Specialists of El Paso; Hardy Hole Drilling of Chaparral, N.M.; Choctaw Erectors Inc. of Grand Prairie, Texas; and Cano Structures LLC of Surprise, Ariz.

About 120 workers are currently on the job. Work that doesn't impact motorists is mostly done during daylight hours. Some work is done at night based on crew availability, weather and when traffic lanes need to be closed.

Heavy equipment at the project site includes scrapers, dump trucks, man lifts, Bobcat excavators and cranes.

Heavy Use of Concrete, Asphalt

The Go 10 project will require a total of 350,000 sq. yds. of concrete for pavement (about 72 acres); 87,000 tons of asphalt; 216,000 sq. ft. of retaining walls; and 1 million cu. yds. of dirt.

Crews will install 610,000 sq. ft. of bridge deck, while the existing asphalt pavement will be removed and recycled as part of the new pavement. Steel that is removed will be sold to industry for melt down and reuse and concrete will be reused in subgrade layers in various forms.

Phase 2 Bridge Construction

Recent project work includes construction of an I-10 overpass at North Mesa Street. Crews are building a bridge between the eastbound and westbound I-10 lanes on an existing two-part bridge structure that crosses North Mesa Street.

The new center bridge will be used temporarily for eastbound traffic during phased work while the existing eastbound I-10 structure is rebuilt. Once the eastbound I-10 bridge is rebuilt, the center bridge will be used for westbound traffic while workers rebuild the westbound part of the overpass.

“The contractor is working the entire length of the project from Mesa to Executive Center,” said Tim Twomey, the project engineer. “Work within the project limits is divided into phases at major interchanges.”

Work at North Mesa Street is currently in Phase 2 of three phases. Phase 3 will feature construction of the westbound main-lane bridge once Phase 2 is complete. Eastbound traffic will then be permanently directed to the newly constructed eastbound bridge.

Work is active at Resler Drive where crews are building the new direct connector and aligning it to the collector-distributor roads. Once traffic is switched to the new structure, the old direct connector will be demolished.

Sunland Park Drive traffic will be moved to turnaround bridges on both sides of the new interchange that are currently under construction. The permanent Sunland Park Drive bridge will then be constructed with traffic switched to the new structure roughly in the same alignment with the turnaround bridges placed in operation at that time.

The section between Sunland Park Drive and Executive Center Boulevard involves pavement widening, allowing for the merging of the collector-distributor roadway with I-10 at Executive Center Boulevard. Phase 1 builds the pavement in this section and is nearing completion with Phase 2 involving the center median re-construction including concrete pavement on the shoulder along with a concrete traffic barrier.

Other work involving side road construction is performed along-side I-10 work when dictated by phasing.

Relieve Congestion, Improve Safety

Traffic volume and congestion in the project area of I-10 has increased because of population growth and an improved economy in the area. Continued population growth is expected to create even more traffic in the I-10 corridor. I-10 improvements and collector-distributor lanes were planned to help meet the needs of increased traffic.

The improvements are designed to increase capacity while improving traffic flow and reducing accidents. Also, with the collector-distributor lanes in place, weaving movements will be minimized, enhancing safety on I-10 main lanes.

Lane, Ramp Closures

Motorists can expect various lane and ramp closures, speed limit reductions in work zones and designation of temporary on-ramps and off-ramps. Complete closure of I-10 will be necessary at times for major construction events like placing of structural beams, pouring of bridge decks and the demolition of bridges. Major I-10 closures are limited to nights and Sundays.

TxDOT will notify motorists of lane and ramp closures and detours through websites, Twitter and news releases. The project has a public relations component that considers concerns of the local community.

Go 10 Ties to Border West Expressway Project

The nearby Border West Expressway project also is under construction. Through new ramps, I-10 will connect with Paisano Drive (U.S. 85) and the Border West Expressway.

The new direct connection will be located just east of the Sunland Park overpass. Contractors from both projects are coordinating construction schedules and road closures to mitigate traffic conflicts.

When completed, the Border West Expressway will be a toll managed expressway and an alternative roadway for eastbound and westbound commuters.

Project on Schedule

Grupo Tradeco, a Mexican construction company, voluntarily defaulted on its contract and walked away from the Go 10 project in June 2015. Tradeco's action was prompted by problems related to other projects it had outside of El Paso.

Despite the contract being defaulted, the project is on target to meet or beat its original completion date of April 2019. Potential delays were managed early in the contract to place the project back on schedule.

And Go 10 remains on budget. Planners implemented cost saving measures where possible, while maintaining the original integrity of the project. Partnering and teamwork helped in that effort.

CEG