The Southern Ohio Veterans Memorial Highway (also known as State Route 823 or Portsmouth Bypass) is the largest single transportation project in the State of Ohio’s history, as well as Ohio’s first true public- private partnership (P3). Due to its route around the city of Portsmouth, this 16-mile stretch of new four-lane highway reduces commuting time by up to 30 minutes, while providing opportunities for economic growth and commerce. Construction of the $634 million project began in 2015 and was completed on schedule in December 2018. Extreme site requires seamless materials testing The company of record enlisted Terracon for our expertise in quality control and quality management. Not only is it unusual to complete 16 A NEW ROAD OPENS NEW OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH By Matt Lehmenkuler, P.E. and Jason Sander, P.E. cover
miles of new roadway in a single phase, nearly 23 million cubic yards of Appalachian mountain earth had to be cleared and moved first, at times cutting as deep as 200 feet into the rock to meet design grades. Our quality control technicians monitored the placement of material into the valleys to build road, or back into the terrain. We established an onsite AASHTO accredited laboratory to perform concrete com- pressive strength testing and index testing of native soils. This reduced sample transport distance and time, allowing for faster delivery of quality results. We also evaluated the cut slopes, providing the risk rat- ing for the exposed rockface consisting of shale, sandstone, and clay stones. In addition to the onsite natural materials, working seamlessly with the public-private partnership(P3) team, we helped design, develop, and provide quality control for the construction materials used in the 21 bridges needed to complete the bypass, more than half of which required mechanically stabilized earth (MSE) walls for support. In all, 300,000 square feet of MSE walls were built. There were also numer- ous structures and substructures for bridges, as well as culverts, that required verification of the specified material and foundation installa- tions. We utilized our onsite lab to cure and test all concrete compres- sion test cylinders.
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