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Balfour Beatty, as Part of CRC Joint Venture Team, Achieves Major Milestone on Mobility Authority’s $743 Million US 183 South Project
November 10, 2020
AUSTIN – Balfour Beatty, as part of Colorado River Constructors (CRC) joint venture team, celebrates opening a majority of the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority’s (Mobility Authority) new US 183 South tolled expressway in Travis County. Once substantially complete, the phased project will serve as a primary route to and from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport and points beyond, and offer Central Texas drivers a non-stop, signal-free route to improve mobility for more than 60,000 travelers a day.
As of Oct. 24, 2020, 95-percent of US 183 South from US 290 to SH 71 opened to public traffic, a major achievement for the Mobility Authority and Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) after nearly ten years of working with agencies and the community to provide a solution to improve mobility in eastern Travis County.
To reach this major milestone, CRC executed at least 26 different building phases and 82 design changes to connect various roadways to the US 183 South corridor. The joining roadways and entities included approximately 35 cross streets, five major intersections, two major interstates and highways and one railway. The joint venture team strategically delivered the roadway connections while safely maintaining increased traffic flow due to newly added lanes, connecting ramps and direct connectors to other major interstates and highways over the Colorado River and throughout Downtown Austin.
To convey hydraulic flow on the corridor, two additional bridge spans and arched culverts were designed and constructed on US 183 South. Located at the westbound overpass bridge of SH 71, the bridge system consists of 42 precast arches that are 62,000 pounds per arch, 12.5 feet tall and approximately 45 feet out to out.
During construction, the CRC joint venture team also paved more than 100 lane miles of concrete along the tolled expressway. Concrete paving included 1,140,000 square yards of pavement, 400,000 cubic yards of concrete and nearly 50,000,000 pounds of reinforcing steel. Teams also utilized two onsite wet batch concrete plants, operated by CRC, to produce mass placements at a rapid rate with dump trucks that lowered material costs, provided flexible schedules and increased production.
“This milestone is a true testament of our project team’s many accomplishments to successfully open the US 183 South tolled expressway on behalf of the Mobility Authority,” said John Rempe, PE, president and chief executive officer of Balfour Beatty’s US civils operations. “Throughout the project’s delivery, our team and partners remained abundantly cautious of the project’s cost and schedule, surpassed 2.5 million manhours without a lost time incident and upheld the client’s and community’s goal of sustainability and environmental preservation along the corridor. We commend our teams hard work and dedication to reconstruct the new expressway and we thank the public for working with us to safely deliver a new solution that will improve mobility on one of the most congested roadways in the State of Texas.”
The US 183 S expressway will feature five grade-separated interchanges, 37 new bridges, direct connect flyover ramps, intelligent traffic management systems, multimodal transportation options for pedestrian and bicyclist facilities, and landscaping enhancements. Phase I of the US 183 South corridor project opened in Fall 2019 and included the delivery of US 183 from US 290 to Techni Center Drive. The final phase of work, between the southern half of the corridor from Techni Center to SH 71, will reach substantial completion in the first quarter of 2021, opening remaining toll lanes and general-purpose lanes to public traffic.