Working in a city of less than 50,000 people that rely on their main street for most all of their commerce, Q&D undertook the reconstruction of Idaho Street, a 4.5-mile arterial running through the heart of the City of Elko. The entire site, in the condensed commercial corridor, was bordered on all sides by businesses large and small. In 30 years, the residents of Elko have never had to deal with major road construction on this street.
City residents and visitors had mixed feelings about the project. While they were pleased that their main drag was to be revitalized, they were also concerned that the project would negatively impact their businesses. Q&D met early with City project leaders to orchestrate a shortened schedule – to reduce the overall impact of the project on the City’s residents, to avoid the cold, deep winters common to the area and the potential of an extra phase of work in the following spring of 2012.
The team worked extra shifts to help make a more aggressive schedule, reducing the timeframe from 185 days per the original contract to 5 months without adding cost to the project. The project was built in sections in order to keep businesses open as long as possible, with 4 to 5 crews working at any one time.
The City of Elko was fortunate enough to have Q&D Construction Inc. as the awarded contractor on the project. From day one Q&D presented an aggressive schedule that took our anticpated 185-day construction schedule to a 5-month construction schedule. It has been a pleasure working with Q&D Construction and I hope to be able to work with them on future projects.
– Jeremy Draper, P.E., City of Elko Civil Engineer
Keeping folks informed of the schedule and progress was an important part of reducing the impact of construction on businesses. Q&D hired a local representative familiar with the town and residents to canvas the project limits every day, all day, talking to shop owners and residents to ensure they understood the work schedule. When merchants had ideas or special requests, Q&D accommodated them, opening up new temporary entrances, and being sure to return areas to public use as soon as structural concrete strength requirements were met.
In addition to constant canvassing, the team sent daily e-mails to local chamber of commerce members, the Downtown Business Association, City project team members, and other interested parties to ensure everyone had the most up to date information. People still felt inconvenienced by the construction in general, but by keeping them informed, they felt part of the team and focused on the end-result.
The original street was 30-years-old, leading to some surprises along the way. As-built drawings did not depict oil tanks and unknown utilities. The team identified the obstructions and dealt with them swiftly, offering design suggestions and solutions to the team, all while starting up work in other areas to keep the project moving forward.
The project was smack in the middle of parades, pageants, and streams of visitors coming to shop, work and tour the City of Elko. Keeping people informed, working extra crews and at times extra shifts and dealing with obstructions knowledgeably and swiftly helped Q&D return Elko to normal operation early. Residents are pleased with the improvements!
AGC Pinnacle Merit Award Meeting the Challenge of a Difficult Job