Highway Award Cites California Project as Gold Level Winner

National Partnership for Highway Quality

The National Partnership for Highway Quality (NPHQ) announced today that California has been named a 2007 National Achievement Award Gold Level Winner for its I-15 Rapid Rehab at Devore project. Project partners include the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) District 8 and contractor Coffman Specialties, Inc.

The announcement was made in San Diego, California, a partnership among federal, state, and roadway industry leaders and officials that promotes highway quality, safety, and service to the highway user.

For Caltrans, the prospect of rehabilitating the 3.4-mile segment of I-15 in San Bernardino County presented several unique constraints.

The roadway segment is located just south of a steep mountain grade, the Cajon Pass, and is part of the only freeway serving a large number of desert commuters and truckers traveling between Nevada and California. Moreover, the only alternate route available would add 22 miles and 45 minutes to a person’s daily commute, making total closure of the roadway virtually impossible.

Originally, the project was to take place over eight weeks with extended 72-hour weekday closures from Monday through Thursday. However, during community meetings, Caltrans learned that local communities felt the agency was catering to weekend travelers at the expense of high-desert commuters.

Caltrans worked with the contractor to develop a more customer-friendly Rapid Rehab schedule that utilized extended single-roadbed closures for just four weeks. As a result, a project that would have taken 10 months utilizing traditional night-time closures was completed in just 4 weeks, saving $6 million in construction costs.

“NPHQ is committed to building our highways more quickly and efficiently, and this project is a shining example of what can be done when we listen to our constituents,” NPHQ Executive Director Bob Templeton said. “The benefits of a project such as this will be with us for years to come.”

The NPHQ National Achievement Awards recognize overall project quality; the partnership between state departments of transportation and private contractors; technical and materials innovations; the effectiveness and creativity of public involvement; the teams’ effectiveness in meeting or exceeding expected deadlines, costs, and deliverables; responsiveness to environmental needs and opportunities; and adherence to other principles of quality management.

NPHQ is the only nationally-formed organization dedicated to achieving total commitment to highway quality and customer satisfaction in every state. Its partners include the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI), the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET), the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), the American Concrete Pipe Association (ACPA), Delcan Corporation, Granite Construction Company, Kiewit Corporation, RedVector, URS Corporation, and Williams Brothers Construction Co., Inc.