Awards Galore For City Infrastructure Projects - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Awards Galore For City Infrastructure Projects

November 6th, 2018 SanTan Sun News
Awards Galore For City Infrastructure Projects

By City of Chandler

They don’t garner much attention, except when their construction impacts the public.

And some are hidden behind earthen berms or walls so as to lessen their visual impact.

But to construction industry professionals, the building of water treatment plants, roadways and other public infrastructure is something to be celebrated when done right.

A number of recently completed Chandler projects have caught the attention of prestigious periodicals and industry associations charged with recognizing the “best of the best.”

Among them is the “Engineering News Record,” considered the “bible of the commercial construction industry,” with 50,000 paid subscribers and a history dating back to 1874.

ENR recently named the $122 million expansion of Chandler’s Ocotillo Water Reclamation Facility (OWRF) one of its 2018 Best Projects for the Southwest Region. The magazine is featuring the project in its November “ENR Southwest” issue.

Located at Price and Queen Creek roads, the OWRF recycles wastewater to near drinking water quality so it can be re-used. The Ocotillo community uses the water on its golf courses, common areas and in lakes.

Continued growth in the Ocotillo area and Price Road corridor necessitated the expansion of the plant to increase its treatment capacity from 10 million gallons per day (mgd) to 15 mgd.

Accomplishing this expansion while keeping the plant online was a complex and challenging endeavor. It was the successful overcoming of these challenges that resulted in ENR’s recognition.

A unique joint venture involving two respected construction companies, Sundt Construction and McCarthy Building Companies, accomplished the work.

Carollo Engineers and Wilson Engineers performed the design and MakPro Services, LLC, assisted the city with community outreach. Hundreds of skilled workers spent 473,981 hours on the project without a single lost-time accident.

The recognition by ENR came on the heels of another award received by the OWRF expansion project from the Arizona Water Association.

The association, founded in 1928 and dedicated to preserving and enhancing Arizona’s water environment, named the project its 2018 Wastewater Project of the Year.

Of special note was the project team’s outreach to the community during the project’s design. A Community Advisory Panel was established to represent the various stakeholders in the area and to guide the project team’s approach to architectural treatments developed to minimize the aesthetic impacts of the expanded facility.

Another expansion project, this one involving a drinking water treatment plant, was similarly honored. The Chandler-Gilbert Santan Vista Water Treatment Plant received a 2018 Top Project Award from Water & Wastes Digest (W&WD), a leading water industry publication.

The award was presented at the Water Environment Federation’s Annual Technical Exhibition and Conference held in October in New Orleans.

The $67 million construction project doubled the capacity of the drinking water plant serving both the City of Chandler and Town of Gilbert.

The challenging expansion project required the construction of new facilities within an operating plant and was acknowledged for its construction planning and sequencing, collaborative team approach, use of technology, focus on safety and outreach to the community.

Also noteworthy was the project’s completion below the original program budget estimate of $82 million, a $15 million savings. The expansion project was designed by Black & Veatch Corporation and built by Sundt Construction, Inc., and Sturgeon Electric Company, Inc. MakPro Services, LLC, assisted with community outreach.

The same facility was recognized in May as Water Project of the Year by the Arizona Water Association.

The Arizona Forward Association’s Environmental Excellence Awards competition, one of Arizona’s oldest and most prestigious, presented the City of Chandler with an Award of Distinction in October for a downtown project that extended Dakota Street, rebuilt Commonwealth Avenue and rehabilitated a historic Salt River Project (SRP) canal.

The extension of Dakota Street between Commonwealth Avenue and Buffalo Street added another north-south arterial through downtown, improving traffic circulation and adding connectivity for the various multifamily projects, including the recently opened Alta San Marcos and future DC Heights apartment project.

Improvements to Commonwealth Avenue and adjacent SRP canal have brought more walkability to downtown while introducing a historical look at Chandler’s canal system and its importance to the community’s early development.

A new sidewalk alongside the canal stretches from San Marcos Place to Dakota Street, with an image of Dr. A.J. Chandler made from inlaid tiles prominently featured at the sidewalk’s terminus at Dakota Street.

To accomplish the project, the city worked closely with the Bureau of Reclamation, State Historic Preservation Office, SRP, San Marcos Golf Resort and numerous downtown businesses and residents.

The project’s popularity prompted Phoenix Magazine to name it the Best New Attraction in a Downtown, saying “The artsy design transforms this once dirt-lined canal into an enlightened pedestrian pathway where painted walls resemble agricultural fields, seeded glass beads make you think of water and photographic murals bring the area’s agricultural history to life.”

The project was designed by J2 Engineering & Environmental Design, LLC, and was constructed by Achen-Gardner Construction, LLC. Gunn Communications, Inc. provided business and community outreach services.

The Arizona chapters of two highly-respected industry associations, the American Public Works Association (APWA) and the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC), each bestowed awards on Chandler’s $11 million intersection improvement project at Chandler Boulevard and Alma School Road.

The APWA named the project its Transportation Project of the Year and the ACEC recognized the project with its 2018 Honor Award.

The APWA award recognizes public infrastructure projects that exemplify excellence in management and administration, including safety performance, construction techniques, community relations and environmental stewardship.

The ACEC award recognizes projects that demonstrate an exceptional degree of innovation, complexity, achievement and value.

The intersection improvements involved the complete rebuilding of the intersection to add dual left turn lanes, dedicated right turn lanes, bike lanes, and a third through-lane on Chandler Boulevard.

The intersection improvements were accomplished while accommodating 62,000 vehicles per day and maintaining access to 88 surrounding businesses.

The intersection project was designed by Kimley-Horn and Associates, Inc. The construction manager was Ritoch-Powell & Associates. Standard Construction Company, Inc. constructed the improvements and MakPro Services, LLC assisted with business and community outreach.

“Our Public Works & Utilities Department, working with local engineering design firms and contractors, continues to set the standard for professionalism and efficiency and do a tremendous job building and maintaining our public infrastructure,” Chandler Mayor Jay Tibshraeny said.

“And while awards are great to receive, we see them more as validation of the City’s goal to give our citizens well planned, constructed and cost-efficient improvements.”