SSR provided construction engineering inspection oversight for the modification of the I-40/I-240 interchange from I-240 north of Walnut Grove Road to north of Covington Pike including 0.3 miles west of the interchange to Sycamore View at I-40. The project calls for the construction of two new flyover bridges, grading, drainage, retaining wall construction, and paving. The project is 5.7 miles in length and is the largest single project for TDOT with a construction cost of $110 million.
The original plan for I-40 was to go straight through the city of Memphis, but in the 1970s, it was decided that I-240 would instead direct the traffic around the city. A single on-ramp was built to carry the traffic from I-40 to I-240. In 2013, 200,000 vehicles passed through the interchange each day, causing major traffic backups and impeding the flow of traffic through the single lane. It is estimated that by 2020, the number of vehicles traveling through the interchange every day will be closer to 350,000. So, TDOT began their project for widening and strengthening the interchange.
SSR’s team of engineers was able to work with numerous contractors and within the timelines and budgets for this project. This project required a lot of nighttime work and creative problem solving regarding access to the work area to perform inspections. One unique feature of this job was SSR’s utilization of dynamic pile analysis to determine the capacity of the piles with more accurate information. This task was outside the original specifications given by TDOT in this project. SSR was able to determine the length of piles needed, which meant they could be prefabricated before coming to the work site. This saved the project time and money.
Another feature that SSR considers a pillar of this project’s success is continuous communication. SSR prides itself on communication thoroughly and effectively with its subcontractors and with the client, who in turn is able to keep stakeholders and the public informed about the progress of the project with regard to lane closures, etc. SSR’s good communication has ensured their work is running in time and within budget.