Atkins wins design services contract for Colorado DOTs I-70 Twin Tunnels widening project - June 15, 2012
(Tampa, FL) — Atkins, one of America’s top-ranked engineering and design consultancies, is pleased to report that it has begun the design work for a major Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) project that is intended to improve the Interstate 70 Mountain Corridor east of Idaho Springs. The project involves widening eastbound I-70 to accommodate three traffic lanes—including expanding the eastbound bore of the Idaho Springs Twin Tunnels—as well as building a new bridge and 1.6 miles of retaining walls.
Interstate 70 is one of the nation’s major east-west transportation corridors, carrying high volumes of recreational, commercial, and commuter traffic and connecting the cities of Denver and Grand Junction through the Rocky Mountains. The purpose of the CDOT project is to improve highway safety, operations, and travel-time reliability by helping to alleviate the gridlock that occurs almost every weekend on eastbound I-70 from Idaho Springs through the Twin Tunnels and to the base of Floyd Hill, for a total distance of about three miles.
The $60 million project is the result of more than ten years of environmental study by CDOT, culminating in the completion of a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) in 2011. Since then, Atkins has worked closely with CDOT to identify the first steps needed to address the Corridor’s safety and mobility needs. These efforts helped Atkins win the design services contract, which will be fulfilled through the construction management/general contractor (CM/GC) delivery method.
“[This] will be the first project to provide additional capacity since I-70 was built in the 1960s,” noted Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper in his second State of the State address on January 12, 2012, calling the effort Colorado’s “most critical congestion relief project.”
According to Atkins project director Allan Brown, PE, CDOT had good reason to award the contract to Atkins. “CDOT was impressed with our previous performance on other CDOT projects and our unmatched knowledge of the I-70 corridor,” he noted. “In addition, they liked the global team we’ve assembled to work on this project, including specialists in designing tunnels, bridges, retaining walls, highways, managed lanes, and more.”
Under the CM/GC contract methodology—a service delivery process relatively new to CDOT—Atkins will work collaboratively with CDOT and a joint venture of Edward Kraemer & Sons, Inc., and Obayashi Corporation. The contract’s aggressive schedule calls for three lanes to be open to eastbound I-70 traffic by October 31, 2013.
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Notes to Editors
Atkins (www.atkinsglobal.com) is one of the world's leading engineering and design consultancies*, employing some 17,700 people across the UK, North America, Middle East, Asia Pacific, and Europe. It has the breadth and depth of expertise to plan, design, and enable some of the world's most technically challenging and time critical infrastructure projects.
*It is the largest engineering consultancy in the UK (New Civil Engineer Consultants File 2011) and the 13th largest international design firm (Engineering News-Record 2011).
Recent projects include:
- Critical program management of storm protection works in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans and Southern Louisiana, providing expertise in coastal restoration, engineering, environmental and GIS support to rebuild defenses and protect habitats.
- Architectural and construction phase services for the new Tyndall Air Force Base Fitness Center, meeting LEED Platinum standards without impact to project cost.
- Equal partner in a joint venture that is providing full-service program/project management support for the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan, a $7.8-billion project encompassing ecological restoration, water storage, flood control, and recreation.
- Key transit projects – member of joint venture providing general engineering consultant team for the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority and project management oversight contractor for the Federal Transit Administration for major transit projects throughout the US.
- Lead firm on the Ascend, Joint Venture, LLC team, which is designing the $1.2-billion Maynard Holbrook Jackson Jr. International Terminal roadway system at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.
- Meeting stringent nutrient removal requirements for wastewater treatment plants in the Chesapeake Bay area through design of upgrades to Howard County, Maryland’s Little Patuxent Water Reclamation Plant and the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission’s Seneca Wastewater Treatment Plant, and design and construction of enhanced nutrient removal facilities at Anne Arundel County’s Patuxent Water Reclamation Plant.
- Multi-year architecture-engineering construction management services for the National Park Service in the USA, including projects such as rehabilitation of the Furnace Creek Visitor Center and Administrative Complex at California’s Death Valley to meet the US Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Gold certification standards.
The Idaho Springs Twin Tunnels, looking east on I-70 in central Colorado. The eastbound tunnel bore (on the right) will be widened to accommodate three traffic lanes; Atkins is doing the design work.