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SEP 14: Annual Report 2009: Capital Beltway HOT Lanes Project

5 Quality

The quality of the design plans has been an ongoing issue for this project. A few of the specific quality issues are summarized below.

The Design/Builder initiated the design utilizing one nationally known consultant firm. The design work is divided into sections (1 through 8) and designed in multiple offices around the country. There has been plan inconsistency from one design section to the next and lack of quality control/quality assurance from the local office to ensure consistency;

Many project designers are working on VDOT projects for the first time. A significant amount of effort was invested by the Virginia MegaProjects team to train Concessionaire designers to produce acceptable VDOT plans.

The design schedule timeline does not allow adequate time to incorporate comments, cross-check other disciplines, correct coordination issues, and release complete and corrected plans. Frequently, plan sets are resubmitted before previous comments can be fully vetted and incorporated.

The project submissions have gone from preliminary to final, without an intermediate check. Identified design issues that have required significant rework could have been discovered sooner with intermediate review steps.

The ARCA requires limited oversight review. Because of the significant design issues identified, particularly early in the project, the Virginia MegaProjects team was forced to review plans in a full QA/QC capacity.

Over the course of the project, the quality of the design plans has steadily improved. In particular, the bridge, MOT, drainage, retaining wall, and soundwall plans have progressed to a point where limited review is possible, in general. It should be noted that although the Concessionaire is contractually obligated to produce standard VDOT quality plans, drafting issues such as line types, typos, and line weights have been relaxed in favor of progressing the overall project schedule.

Moving forward, the Virginia MegaProjects Team will continue to work with the designer to address and improve internal (HNTB) plan coordination errors and geotechnical plans, which continue to exhibit ongoing quality issues.

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Jerry Yakowenko
Office of Program Administration
E-mail Jerry

Updated: 04/07/2011

United States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway Administration