I-680 express lane

Four HDR Projects Honored in the Top 10 in North America by Roads & Bridges Magazine

Roads in California and Iowa, Bridges in North Carolina and Vermont Win Industry Recognition

Four HDR projects have been named among the best in North America by Roads & Bridges magazine in their 2021 Top 10 Roads and Top 10 Bridges awards. Among the winners is the Interstate 680 Southbound Express Lane, named the top road project in the U.S.

“Awards such as these recognize the vision of DOTs in serving transportation users and the expertise of our road and bridge planners and engineers who help make that vision a reality” said HDR Highways and Roads Director Bernie Arseneau. “It’s gratifying to see our work recognized, and I couldn’t be prouder of our expert teams that have delivered amazing projects to satisfied clients across the globe.”

The winning projects, chosen by the magazine’s editorial staff, were announced in the November/December issue of Roads & Bridges. The recognition continues a tradition of HDR projects earning accolades from the industry’s leading transportation construction and engineering magazine. In 2019, for example, HDR’s Project Neon in Las Vegas was named the No. 1 road project, and the Bayonne Bridge and Basnight Bridge were named top bridges No. 1 and 2, respectively.

HDR’s 2021 Winners

Interstate 680 Southbound Express Lane, No. 1 Road

I-680 express lanes

The $127 million Southbound I-680 HOV Lane Completion and Express Lane Conversion Project added 3 miles of express lane and converted 8 miles of High Occupancy Vehicle lane on southbound I-680 in the San Francisco Bay Area. It connects to a previous express lane project and results in a 25-mile continuous express lane from Martinez to San Ramon.

In close coordination with the Contra Costa Transportation Authority, the lane opened under budget and a year ahead of schedule as an HOV lane. The project team overcame significant challenges including an urban corridor with physical constraints, wetlands and marsh habitats, the need for two separate construction contracts, and complex maintenance of traffic requirements.

Council Bluffs Interstate System Dual-Divided Freeway, No. 4 Road

council bluffs divided freeway

The marquee feature of the Council Bluffs Interstate System Improvement Program is the 3-mile dual, divided freeway — the first in the region. It includes at least six total lanes in each direction, three on I-80 Express and three on I-29/I-80 Local, with the two separated by a concrete barrier.

The design separates interstate through-traffic from local traffic. Express lanes provide an exit-free journey through the city, while local lanes offer the ability to exit onto local roads. Constructed in phases through more than a dozen multi-million-dollar packages, the dual-divided freeway corridor represents more than $1 billion of the total $1.5 billion price tag for the Council Bluffs program, Iowa DOT’s largest urban interstate reconstruction program.

Green Street Pedestrian Bridge, No. 2 Bridge

Green Street pedestrian bridge

The $2 million Green Street Pedestrian Bridge is a unique, multi-ribbed, unbraced tied-arch structure spanning the newly reconstructed Salem Parkway. Located in downtown Winston-Salem, North Carolina, the bridge connects the West Salem neighborhood with the city’s multi-use path, the nearby baseball stadium, and new developments planned for the area. The arching structure serves as an artful, iconic gateway into downtown, to inspire economic development and symbolize Winston-Salem’s 21st century aspirations. 

Coordinating closely with the North Carolina DOT and the City of Winston-Salem, HDR provided the final engineering and design for the bridge, part of our work as the lead consultant on the I-40 Business Reconstruction project. The bridge benefited from extensive advanced parametric design work that helped our team meet a limited design and construction budget on an aggressive schedule.

I-91 Rockingham Bridges, No. 6 Bridge

I-91 Rockingham bridges

The $50 million I-91 Rockingham Bridges are Vermont’s first four-span spliced precast concrete girder structures and the last of three major bridge replacements on I-91 in southeastern Vermont. The design-build project used one-of-a-kind elements and some of Vermont’s largest precast segments, raised with massive cranes, to expedite and simplify construction while overcoming a unique unbalanced layout.

The team constructed new bridges atop a challenging topography and more than 130 feet above an environmentally critical river. The project team repurposed the old substructure as temporary supports for the new bridges, maintained traffic throughout construction, and surmounted the considerable pier slenderness requirements of the Vermont Agency of Transportation to deliver a wider, safer and more resilient set of structures.