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Bridging History: The Harford Road Bridge Project

Skill Set Recommendations

3.1 Construction

The construction skill set offered the following recommendations:

Project Phasing
  • Require full closure.
  • Eliminate staged construction.
  • Incorporate enhancements to detour route.
  • Close pedestrian bridge during construction.
  • Conduct constructability review.
  • Recommend complete re-construction.
  • Reduce/eliminate (2) spans.
  • Develop modified typical section w/ new MSE Retaining Wall.
Park Impacts
  • Incorporate enhancements.
    • Aesthetics.
    • New/re-aligned pedestrian access.
  • Add temporary pedestrian- bike path access (downstream).
Contact Administration
  • Explore opportunities for:
    • Partnering.
    • Incentive/Disincentive.
    • Design/Build.
  • Explore innovative financing opportunities through FHWA IFT.

3.2 Environmental

The environmental team offered the following recommendations:

Maintain as many of the existing agreements as possible.
Use the existing MOA with the SHPO.
  • Basic premise of mitigation through documentation, design review, and salvage will not change if the construction occurs through full closure of the bridge.
  • What is the nature of the "design review" authority provided to the SHPO?
    • Bridge must be designed in concert with the Department of Interior Secretary's standards.
Issue a continuance request or modify the non-tidal permit from the Corps.
  • Permit based on worst-case scenario.
  • Impacts are not expected to increase if the bridge is closed.
Consider that 4(f) temporary use of the park will not change with bridge closure.
  • Assumption of less time than with staged construction.
  • If pedestrian bridge closure or trail closure occurs, this may affect the 4(f) approval.
  • With bridge closure, how much staging can be done off the approaches in order to lessen the staging area in the park?
  • Can the time be lessened for staging in the park?
Prepare Forest Conservation Plan
  • Will be re-evaluated based on any construction plan changes.
  • Unlikely to increase the impacts.

3.3 Public Relations

The public relations team offered the following recommendations:

Arrange for Public Information Management
  • Full time not necessary.
    • Baltimore City Public Affairs staff and liaisons.
    • Project spokesperson - technical: Margaret Martin.
    • Media updates coordinated through BCPA.
    • Public inquiries handled by BCPA.
Identify Basic Parameters and Negotiable Issues
  • Determine basic non-negotiable items:
    • A new bridge is needed - reconstruct vs. rehab.
    • Four lanes - no widening.
    • Pedestrian access - sidewalk.
    • Sidewalk with barrier.
  • Determine negotiable items:
    • Aesthetics/façade (graffiti exists now - resistant paint may be used/consider a mural?)
    • Bike lane separated from travel lanes.
    • Lighting underneath bridge/along pathway.
    • Beautification at bridge approaches - public involvement.
Identify all Stakeholders
  • Business Owners.
  • Residents.
    • Nursing Homes.
  • Community Associations.
  • Commuters.
  • Pedestrians.
  • Park users.
  • Churches/Schools/Institutions.
    • Morgan State University.
    • Montebello Elementary.
    • St. Francis.
    • Mervo High School.
    • Johns Hopkins.
    • Pratt Library - Hamilton Branch.
  • Emergency Response/Hospitals (911 List).
  • Media.
  • Other Government Agencies.
    • MD Transit Admin. (buses).
    • Recreation & Parks.
    • DPW.
    • BCPSS Transportation (School and bus routes).
    • Baltimore County - various.
    • MD SHA.
    • USPS.
  • Elected Officials.
  • Special Events Coordination.
    • Festivals.
    • Concerts.
    • Marathon.
    • Recreation (Youth Sports).
    • Parking
Manage Communication with Stakeholders
  • Interagency coordination meeting.
  • Elected officials briefing.
  • PIO coordination meeting.
  • Emergency personnel meeting.
  • Community Forum.
    • Informative - convey need to improve bridge.
    • Seek input - context sensitive.
  • Media outlets.
Secure Acceptance and Participation of Stakeholders
  • Form stakeholder advisory task force.
    • Ongoing:
      • Interagency coordination.
      • Elected officials briefings.
      • PIO coordination.
      • Emergency personnel updates.
    • Community involvement - listen, receive input.
  • Establish project/streetscape/aesthetics forum.
    • To gain buy-in and get input from community.
    • Keep accurate updated information going through advisory task force to communities.
Determine Most Effective Method of Informing Stakeholders of Progress and Impacts
  • Hold briefing (provide project info once a month/by request).
  • Send legislative briefings to State officials (information in hand to respond to citizen inquiries).
  • Use communication tools to keep public informed.
Collaborate and Manage Information Release to/by Media
  • Provide media updates coordinated through BCDOT Public Affairs.
  • Coordinate press events and updated information.
  • Distribute information.
  • Coordinate constituent response with Mayor's Office and City Council members and staff (i.e. email, phone calls, constituent website).
Develop Plan to Engage Stakeholders in Acceleration of Construction Process and Communicate Overall Benefit/Solicit Assistance
  • To be developed, pending final project details.

3.4 Structures

The structures skill set offered its recommendations:

Assess Staging Areas
  • Close pedestrian path and pedestrian bridge (safer and faster).
    • Improve contractor accessibility.
    • Reduce risk to pedestrians.
    • Reduce cost.
    • Reduce roadway bridge closure time.
    • Improve site security.
    • Close during demolition and construction.
      • Pedestrian access.
      • Trail dead ends at bridge.
      • Comfort facilities required.
      • Public relations coordination.
  • Close roadway bridge (safer and faster).
    • Improve contractor accessibility.
    • Reduce risk to motorists.
    • Reduce cost.
    • Reduce roadway bridge closure time.
    • Close during demolition and construction.
      • Pedestrian access.
      • Students walking to and from school
      • Busing of students.
      • Public relations coordination.
  • Plan for staging.
    • Modify shoring system (faster and better).
      • Longitudinal post-tensioned system.
        • High risk and needs further evaluation.
        • Construction coordination.
    • Eliminate pedestrian traffic on bridge during staged construction (faster).
      • Eliminate two stages of construction to reduce construction schedule.
        • Needs further evaluation.
        • Public relations coordination.
    • Close roadway bridge (safer and faster).
      • Eliminate risk.
      • Remove all traffic loads.
        • Impact to commuters, community access.
        • Traffic, public relations coordination.
Material Availability
  • Use bulb tee beams (faster and better).
    • AASHTO beams not readily available.
    • Bulb tees are more efficient.
    • Bulb tees should speed construction.
      • Requires re-design.
  • Eliminate 50 feet of interpretive aesthetic railing on middle span (faster).
    • Reduce cost.
      • Public relations coordination.
Use of Pre-Cast Components
  • Consider use of stay-in-place precast concrete deck panels, either in lower half with CIP composite topping or full-depth (faster and better).
    • Reduce cost.
    • Speed construction.
      • Not commonly used in Maryland.
      • Construction coordination.
  • Consider pre-cast spread footings, abutments, wingwalls, piers, and pilasters (faster).
    • Reduce cost.
    • Speed construction.
    • Investigate flooding issues.
      • Not commonly used in Maryland.
      • Construction coordination.
  • Alternative Staged Bridge Demolition
    • Build staged temporary bridge on existing/proposed alignment (faster and better).
      • Construct 2-lane temporary bridge after demolition of existing bridge to allow two-way traffic.
      • Benefits include minimizing length of roadway closure.
        • Additional cost.
        • Environmental impacts with temporary piers in water.
        • Environmental coordination.
  • Alternate Structure Types
    • Simplify precast façade details (faster and better).
      • Reduction in number of construction operations will reduce cost and speed construction.
        • Construction coordination.
  • Reduce 3-span bridge to longer main span with precast concrete arch pedestrian portal on North end only (faster, safer, and better).
    • Reduce initial and future maintenance costs.
    • Reduce construction time.
    • Improve pedestrian and bike access.
    • Consider that future roadway bridge and portal widening would be easier and less costly.
      • Significant re-design.
      • Likely need for total roadway bridge closure.
      • Maryland Historic Trust and community acceptance.
      • Public relations coordination.
  • Build permanent new bridge parallel to existing alignment and leave existing roadway bridge open during bridge construction (faster).
    • Allow free flowing traffic.
    • Allow single phase demolition and construction.
      • Additional cost.
      • Major environmental impacts.
      • Temporary loss of park land.
      • Tie in with existing approaches required.
      • Coordination with all skill sets.
  • Provide minimum 6-foot wide from curb edge to parapet wall (better).
    • Designate bike trail for short distances.
    • Eliminate need to widen existing roadway and roadway bridge.
      • Ornamental railing will need to be replaced with a crashtest approved parapet wall.
      • Interpretive railing at mid-section must be omitted.
  • Add parkway treatments such as median or end pilasters (park gateway) if bridge is widened (better).
    • Offset loss of ornamental outside railing.
    • Increase motorist safety.
    • Allow traffic calming with median.
    • Improve parkway aesthetics - greener and safer.
      • Increase cost.
      • Traffic and public relations coordination.
  • Reconstruct approach roadway the entire length on both ends within the retained fill sections, possibly with a wider cross section (better).
    • Create consistent life-cycle of retained fill sections and bridge.
    • Reduce maintenance.
    • Improve consistency of aesthetic design throughout the park.
    • Allow widening of bridge width for sidewalks/bike path.
    • Provide additional width to separate two-directional traffic.
      • Previous cost savings associated with closing the bridge may be offset by cost of approach roadway reconstruction.
      • Increases LOD and environmental impacts.
      • Environmental coordination required if new retained fill sections are widened.
  • Construct new permanent pedestrian bridge east of roadway prior to demolition of existing roadway bridge (better and safer).
    • Eliminate existing pedestrian bridge prior to roadway bridge demolition.
    • Use prefabricated bridge.
    • Improve safety for pedestrians.
    • Reduce construction time and cost.
    • Eliminate "industrial" view of main span from below.
    • Eliminate future conflicts of pedestrian bridge under roadway bridge.
      • Funding source for removal of existing pedestrian bridge and construction of new pedestrian bridge needs to be determined.
  • Single-Stage Demolition Process
    • Confirm that 20" and 6" water mains can be taken out of service during construction (faster).
      • Reduce number of construction operations to reduce cost and speed construction.
        • If water mains remain in service, they will need to be temporarily supported or relocated through the park permanently.
  • Temporary Bridge Alternatives
    • Build temporary detour bridge parallel to existing/proposed alignment (safer & faster).
      • Evaluate the number of lanes required.
      • Evaluate pedestrian needs and alignment for service throughout roadway bridge construction.
        • Cost prohibitive.
        • Major environmental impacts.
  • Construction Management Techniques
    • Consider contracting strategies such as (faster):
      • P-P-P
      • D-B.
      • Incentive/Disincentive.
      • A+B bidding.
      • Performance specifications.
        • Speed construction.
        • Increase contractor innovation.
        • Increase likelihood of early completion.
        • Improve long-term performance of structure.
        • Better use of contractor resources.
          • Not typical City policy.
          • Construction, traffic, and environmental coordination.
  • New Materials and Techniques
    • Use high performance concrete (better).
      • Improve long-term performance of components.
      • Reduce cost of materials.
        • Construction coordination.

3.5 Traffic Engineering/MOT

The traffic engineering/MOT team offered the following recommendations:

Full Closure
  • Change in bus service (both mass transit and school) along closure and detour routes.
  • Allow additional staging area for equipment on existing closed road.
  • Safety.
  • Pedestrian Access.
  • School Access.
  • Truck Routing.
  • ADA compliance for detour routes and intersection improvements.
  • Model traffic flows to determine best detour routes.
  • Develop incident management plan to mitigate congestion due to accidents and breakdowns.
  • Develop pedestrian/bike access plan (ped routes, count down heads).
  • Improve detour routes and intersections to handle additional traffic.
  • Use variable message signs to detour commuter traffic in advance of project detour routes.
  • Develop a comprehensive public information plan.
  • Establish project website for real time traffic information and detour routes.
  • Investigate innovative contracting methods.
  • Signage for multiple detours, possibly color coding routes.
  • Conduct Associated General Contractors Constructability Review.
Traffic Rerouting
  • Coordinate with other projects (construction, utility, etc.).
    • Develop incident management plan to mitigate congestion due to accidents and breakdowns. Coordination with local law enforcement, emergency response/services, and DOT. Courtesy patrols.
  • Model traffic flows to determine best detour routes.
    • Simulation will help the public better visualize the different options and results.
  • Make improvements to detour routes and intersections to handle additional traffic.
    • Parking restrictions.
    • Possible turn restrictions.
    • Additional turn lanes.
    • Optimize signal timing.
    • Preventive maintenance on signal equipment.
    • Change parking restrictions.
    • Additional parking enforcement assets.
    • Possible ADA improvement requirements for intersection improvements.
  • Identify branding detours, color coding.
  • Coordinate truck route detour/signing.
  • Change in bus service (both mass transit and school) along closure and detour routes.
  • Provide public information.
    • Web page with traffic conditions, detour information, public comment info, e-mail list.
  • Use variable message signs to detour commuter traffic in advance of project detour routes.
  • Monitor/evaluate/adjust.
Pedestrian/Bike Plan
  • Consider creating alternate pedestrian and bike path through park before construction begins.
  • Develop pedestrian/bike access/safety plan (pedestrian/bike routes, count down heads).
    • Harford Road Detour.
    • Park Access.
    • Shuttle bus for school kids.
Stakeholder Impacts
  • Create public information plan.
  • Create project website - detour information, project status, comment/complaint procedures.
  • Prepare for potential increased traffic on some residential streets.
  • Prepare closure of connection through park and north and south neighborhoods.
  • Change in bus service (both mass transit and school) along closure and detour routes.
  • Allow for added congestion and delay.
  • Increased parking restrictions.
  • Coordinate emergency service response.
Phased Construction
  • Better local access (pedestrian, bus, vehicles).
  • Mixed safety concerns (more accidents at construction sites, less at detour).
  • Pedestrian access under bridge.
  • Traffic capacity will be cut in half.
  • Investigate innovative contracting methods to accelerate construction.
  • Develop pedestrian/bike access plan (ped routes, count down heads).
  • Develop Incident Management Plan.
  • Designate truck routes.
  • Allow for school access.
  • Provide staging area for contractor.
  • Prepare AGC Constructability Review.
  • Allow for alternate route development and signage.
Public-Private Partnerships (PPP)
  • Seek private capital investment in exchange for future revenue.
  • Contract between public and private entities to lessen the public entity's involvement.
    • Shifts the risk for future profit from the public entity to the private entity.
  • Secure a long-term lease agreement.
  • Make selection based on best value.
  • Use the private vendors' capital.
Innovative Construction Contracting and Financing
  • Consider the following options:
    • Existing revenues, i.e., State user fees, Federal revenue (advanced construction), bonds/notes, local matches, economic development funds.
    • Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicle (GARVEE) Bonds.
      • Utilize to leverage Federal aid.
      • Pay bond debt with future Federal dollars.
    • Revenue bonds.
      • Pay bond debt with future State dollars.
    • Private Activity Bonds (PABs) - private entities utilizing tax exempt bonds.
      • Must be Title 23 eligible.
      • Note: The current Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEALU) authorization is for $15 billion.
    • Transportation Infrastructure Finance Innovation Act (TIFIA) financing, a USDOT financing program.
      • Can use for both public and private entities.
      • Finance one-third of the project cost with a subordinate lien position. This results in a lower interest rate for the primary loan.
      • Provides a new source of revenue.
      • Pay back over 35 years, with first payment due in 5 years.
    • Tolling.
      • User pays for the concept.
      • Creates a revenue stream.
      • Is applicable with added capacity or congestion pricing.
      • Consider pilot program with FHWA to toll for rehabilitation of existing Interstates.
      • Consider a pilot program with FHWA for an express lane demonstration program.
    • State Infrastructure Bank (SIB), Rail Infrastructure Bank (RIB) or Section 129 loans.
Non-user Revenues
  • Utilize economic development funds.
  • Consider local option taxes.
  • Work with regional authorities.
Financial Plan
  • Develop a financial plan that is a working document, updated as the project changes.
  • Subject to FHWA approval.
Final Recommendations
  • Change State law.
  • Conduct a toll feasibility study.
  • Consider private participation.
  • Increase user fees.
  • Tap non-user revenues.
  • Consider a single D-B contract.
    • Provides access to innovation.
    • Offers single-point coordination.
    • Advances the project schedule.
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Updated: 10/27/2015
Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000