When a construction company gets a government contract to build a bridge, it comes with great responsibility. The company probably got the contract because of a competitive bid and good bridge design presentation. Now, the company must build that bridge within the low bid they gave without cutting any corners. The bridge must last a long time and it must be safe for the thousands of people who will cross over it from day to day, week to week, month to month, and year to year.
Choose the Right Bridge Construction Contractor and the Right Bridge Design
When a government entity is putting out bids for a new bridge, they must have a capable engineer to set the specifications and choose the correct design for the bridge. The engineer and other qualified people must pick the best company to build the bridge. This is not always the lowest bidder. It is important to set high standards that each bidder must meet.
The contractor must use a supplier such as Doka Bridge Deck Forming Systems for the latest technology, materials, and building protocols. The latest and best technologies will contribute to safer, stronger bridges that are going to need fewer repairs and last longer. Consider the years the construction company has been building bridges and review the quality and success of the bridge over time.
The bidding process must include the exact specifications and design of the proposed bridge.The bridge design must involve both structural engineers and an architect for the best design. There must be contractual construction deadlines to meet. There must be built-in inspection schedules to meet and pass. The proposed building systems must be defended and guaranteed. Strict quality demands must be made and kept.
Once a Company Wins the Construction Bid
Once the construction company is chosen and the contracts are signed, there are at least 12 ideas that will help the company build a better bridge. The bridge design must be pleasing, economical, safe, and functional. The bridge construction company must follow the design specifications in a way that delivers a safe, functional bridge that will be durable enough to last decades.
12 Construction Tips
1. Use the highest-grade concrete mixed for better bridge construction. There are new ultra-high performance concretes available.
2. Make use of the latest construction materials and formwork systems and components.
3.Use wide area laser scanners, radio frequency tags, and other equipment to check the physical placement and location of components according to the designer's plan such as beams, bolts, and other construction components.
4. Keep the bridge construction site safe for workers with proper safety protocols and signage.
5. Take steps to protect or relocate the electricity and other power cables, infrastructure, and pipes during construction. Take steps to train workers and institute safety practices to protect electricity, internet, cable, water, and other needed utility services.
6. Consider using the new ABC (accelerated bridge construction) way of building bridges that utilizes better forms of planning, design, materials, procurement, and construction methods.
7. Use bridge designs that need the least number of girders, bracing systems, field splices, and temporary bracing.
8. Have plans for emergency access if workers are injured or construction accidents happen.
9. Plan the project timeline effectively so that workers are not wasted or in each other's way. Each stage of construction should have the correct workers and equipment on hand to do the work without extra people on site.
10. Plan carefully to avoid cash flow issues that could slow down bridge construction. The construction company should have a lawyer and accountant to work with the municipal agency to keep the cash flowing when needed and avoid misunderstandings.
11. Have good job site security to avoid material thefts and malicious damages. Keep all materials and equipment securely locked in secure places when not in use.
12. Avoid poor workmanship at all costs. Carefully vet all workers before hiring them. Train all workers well for the jobs they will be doing. Inspect the work being done at every stage.