American Public Works Association
2013 Public Works Project of the Year
Award category:
Transportation
$5 million - $25 million

Design-assist subcontractors expedite ‘amAZing’ entryway
Project: Centennial Way Federal Aid Transportation Enhancement Project
Managing agency: City of Phoenix
Primary consultant: Entellus Inc.
Primary contractor: Achen-Gardner Construction LLC

Goal: Transform the approach to the state capitol on Washington Street in Phoenix into a pedestrian-friendly showcase in time for Arizona’s 100th birthday celebration on Feb. 14, 2012.

The Arizona Centennial Commission wanted people walking along the Capitol Complex and Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza to get an overview of the state’s “amAZing” places. This vision included natural and structural shade elements; state, county, tribal, historical, and informational elements; civil and aesthetic pedestrian enhancements; and crucial civil infrastructure improvements. It also required the city, county, state, and federal government, and countless stakeholders to successfully collaborate.

Funding was made available April 30, 2010. Because the completion deadline was mandatory, the Achen-Gardner design-build team focused on early stakeholder input, civil design elements, and incorporating design-assist subcontractors to establish the flexibility necessary to productively pursue the design and meet the construction schedule.

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Next year’s award deadline: March 4, 2014

These tactics allowed them to commence construction while continuing to refine specialty elements and remain on schedule, allowing acceleration of the construction phase of aesthetic and landscape elements. Mocking up the shade structures and display construction while design was still in progress enabled real-time evaluation and application of revisions.

In addition to expediting design completion, this approach ensured that custom deliverables met expectations as well as early commencement of fabrication to meet the long lead time of critical project components.

Result: The project team met its deadline, incorporating strict federal guidelines on a fixed budget.

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