Appleton Road (STH 47) Interchange, Outagamie County, Wisconsin
Wisconsin Department of Transportation / Outagamie County, Wisconsin
Award Won:2016 / 27th Annual ACPA Excellence in Concrete Pavement Awards
The Appleton Road (STH 47) Interchange project involved 0.6 miles of urban reconstruction through the interchange with STH 441, including STH 441 bridge widening and ramp reconstruction.
By the Numbers:
- 34,000 SY of 9-inch Concrete Pavement
- 83,000 CY of Excavation
- 85,000 Tons of Base Aggregate
- 47,000 SF of Concrete Sidewalk
- 17,000 LF of Curb and Gutter
- 6,600 LF of Storm Sewer
About the Project
Appleton Road (STH 47) is a principal arterial that traverses through the City of Appleton, City of Menasha and Town of Menasha.
Vinton Construction took on the following challenge required in the bid documents: Close Appleton Road and the STH 441 interchange ramps to traffic for a maximum of 75 calendar days to complete reconstruction of the 4-lane divided roadway, interchange ramps, and roundabouts at the ramp terminal intersections. Failure was not an option due to the $25,000 per day penalty attached to the contract. Vinton and their 12 sub-contractors were up to the task. By means of extraordinary forces, extended work hours with multiple construction operations, and precise construction sequencing and coordination, Vinton was able to meet all project requirements within the allotted time frame.
The construction included over 370 separate bid items with every type of work imaginable. Many aesthetic items and amenities were included in the contract such as colored concrete crosswalks, colored and stamped sidewalk in medians, intersection bumpout construction, bus shelter installation, trash receptacles, benches, bike racks, and planting of nearly 1,600 trees, shrubs, perennials and grasses. Other project work included traffic signal installation at the intersections on each end of the project, roadway lighting, overhead sign structures, ITS construction, and bridge construction.
Despite the fact that Appleton Road and the STH 441 interchange were closed to traffic, construction staging was a big part of the project. The contractor was required to maintain full access across Appleton Road at two intersections within the construction limits that were important access points for local businesses and for Fox Valley Transit bus service. At both ends of the project, intersection turn lane construction and traffic signal installation was completed under traffic with contract restrictions on when lane closures were allowed. The corridor is also an important pedestrian route, and the contract also required the following pedestrian accommodations:
- Maintain pedestrian accommodation on a paved surface at all times.
- Install and maintain safety fencing around the designated pedestrian route for the duration of the project.
- Provide protection from falling debris for pedestrian movements underneath the bridge construction.
A combination of existing sidewalks and numerous stages of temporary asphalt sidewalks and crosswalks were utilized to meet the project pedestrian requirements. The most complicated areas of construction were through the ramp terminal roundabouts and underneath the bridge construction. In both areas, the contractors posted flagman to watch for pedestrians. When pedestrians approached, the flagman would stop or clear construction activities/equipment and then guide pedestrians safely through the work zone.
April 12, 2015 was day one of the daunting task taken on by Vinton Construction and their 12 subcontractors. The work included long hours, several around the clock operations, and limited space between multiple crew operations. On June 26, 74 calendar days later, Appleton Road and the STH 441 interchange was opened to traffic one day ahead of schedule. A tremendous effort was put forth by all contractors involved in the project without any sacrifice to quality of work. Vinton’s management and scheduling was superb, and all contractors came together to overcome obstacles and meet the project deadline. The quality work and attention to detail resulted in a finished product that all parties involved can be truly proud of. The Appleton Road corridor through the STH 441 interchange will service the communities for many years with a quality concrete pavement and beautiful roadway aesthetics and amenities
Noteworthy Project Details
- The project had great impacts to local businesses, and closure of the interchange forced traffic to access STH 441 from adjacent interchanges. WisDOT set a schedule of a 75 maximum calendar day closure tied to substantial liquidated damages to minimize the impacts to both the travelling public and businesses. This was a unique way to force accelerated construction and re-establish full access to STH 441 to alleviate the congestion that spilled over to adjacent interchanges. In order to meet this accelerated schedule Vinton internally broke the project up into 3 phases allowing 4 sewer crews, 2 grading crews and multiple paving crews to work concurrently within the project limits.
- Unique design aesthetic elements were incorporated into the corridor for beautification including colored and stamped concrete sidewalks and crosswalks, an extraordinary amount of landscaping, form lined and stained concrete bridge parapets, bus shelters, decorative trash receptacles and bike racks.
- This contract included a unique item of 78-inch integral concrete curb and gutter. It served as the bike lanes in areas where the bike lane was adjacent to the curb. Generally, 78 inches is too narrow for a traditional paver and too wide for a traditional curb machine. To be able to slip form the 78-inch integral curb and gutter, Vinton used a unique set up of their paver. The paver was oriented to drive 90 degrees from the normal operating direction and the 78-inch shoe was cantilevered off the side of the machine, creating a larger than normal curb machine. This allowed the paver to ride on the newly placed driving lanes and scab on the 78-inch integral curb and gutter. This was a unique set up that saved time by eliminated 1,500’ of hand work and ultimately produced a more consistent machine placed final product.
- Vinton utilized their own on-site mobile crusher to recycle old concrete pavements into the majority of the breaker run that was needed on the project. This process eliminated hundreds of truck trips that would have been required to haul away the old concrete and haul in virgin materials which reduced carbon dioxide emissions, fuel consumption and saved on the wear and tear on the local roads.