The Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA) has awarded the RS&H-designed Rogersville Project Freeway its 2017 National Award for Excellence in Transportation.
Not only did the Missouri highway project earn the DBIA’s top transportation award, but it was also given the inaugural DBIA Chairman’s Award for Community Impact and Social Responsibility.
“You can’t believe how proud I am,” said Sean Matlock, P.E., transportation project manager for the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT). “We had a great team made up of great people, and we had great work by our consultants RS&H and CFS Engineers and our contractor Radmacher Brothers Excavating.”
The Rogersville Project Freeway in Missouri consisted of converting four miles of U.S. Highway 60 into an access-controlled freeway to facilitate safe and efficient traffic movement. MoDOT used a unique procurement strategy that allowed maximum innovation. The Radmacher Brothers/RS&H design-build team devised two grade-separated interchange concepts, which enhanced traffic operations, improved safety, and significantly reduced right-of-way acquisition costs.
The goal of maintaining the community as a whole was primarily achieved through the incorporation of an additional third structure crossing over U.S. Highway 60 into an enhanced and expanded roadway network. The additional local roadways and crossing expanded the connectivity and mobility of Rogersville, and provided for economic growth by creating appropriately sized parcels for development and the infrastructure to serve those areas.
“Design-build projects like the Rogersville Freeway Project will not only improve the lives of millions of Americans nationwide, they also provide innovation, time and cost savings at the same time,” said DBIA Executive Director and CEO Lisa Washington.
While taking home the excellence award was an honor in its own right, the project took home an additional award. The Chairman’s Award for Community Impact and Social Responsibility was created by the committee this year specifically to recognize additional achievements made with the project.
“That was a direct result from our interaction with everyone in the community of Rogersville,” Matlock said.
The design-build team developed community outreach programs with a focus on community, learning, responsibility, and personal development. Students at the adjacent Logan-Rogersville High School and Missouri State University were offered the opportunity to participate in a Young Women in Engineering Program and a Minority Outreach Program, respectively, led by the design-build team.
An intensive public involvement campaign began shortly after the project was awarded and continued through construction. The team conducted a public meeting to share the design considerations with the local community and key stakeholders, including media and regional politicians.
To support public involvement efforts and bolster stakeholder approval, RS&H developed realistic renderings and animated 3D visualizations of the project corridor. These 3D models were used to illustrate the project’s amenities and aesthetics, as well as show the layout of the roadway, landscaping, ponds, and height of the bridge. The concept was revealed at the meeting and met with enthusiasm and support, fueling an already collaborative team and owner to incorporate additional improvements.
Weekly coordination meetings were held with representatives from the Federal Highway Administration, designers, the prime contractor, major subcontractors, utility agencies, MoDOT, the City of Rogersville, and right-of-way negotiators. MoDOT conducted a public information campaign – which included a dedicated project website with daily construction updates and week-ahead traffic impact notices – and coordinated public notices and e-mail blasts to key stakeholders.
Additionally, MoDOT and the RS&H team fielded inquiries from local residents and area businesses and coordinated site visits with federal, state, county, and city groups. Several minor project modifications were incorporated by the team along the way to better accommodate the residents and businesses adjacent to the project.