Construction has moved at a rapid pace for Grand Parkway State Highway 99 Segments F-1, F-2 and G. A milestone that illustrates this progress was the early opening of frontage roads at the SH 99 and I-45 North interchange on April 2.
The opening enhances mobility for area businesses and the traveling public. In addition, the SH 99 westbound and eastbound frontage roads are open to Holzwarth, providing access to the Springwoods Village community and Spring Stuebner. The opening also provides easier access for customers of businesses along I-45 and for employees of area businesses.
George Grantham Jr., P.E., Texas Department of Transportation project manager for Grand Parkway Segments F and G, said, “Opening the I-45 frontage roads was a significant milestone in the delivery of the Grand Parkway. Not only does it give the development team credibility within the Springwoods Village community and other stakeholders, but it shows the community and traveling public that the hard work and innovation by both TxDOT and Zachry-Odebrecht Parkway Builders will meet their expectations.”
The accomplishment was not without its challenges. The interchange is located along a heavy commercial area with a complicated utility infrastructure. The SH 99 Utilities team needed to relocate, de-energize, encase and remove utilities to complete the work.
The I-45 corridor also serves as major thoroughfare for the greater Houston area so crews had to work around live traffic to keep existing traffic moving, as well as provide a safe work zone for team members and the traveling public. In addition, the team had to mitigate the impacts of higher-than-average rainfall.
It took 16 crews and 112 project personnel, totaling 134,400 work hours (not including the hours of 13 subcontractors), to reach this milestone.
I-45 Project Statistics
- Reinforced steel: 4,658 tons (the weight of 11 heavy duty pickup trucks)
- Shafts drilled for subsurface concrete foundations: 7,500 linear feet
- Concrete for footings, columns, caps: 6,200 cubic yards
- Girders installed: 19,800 linear feet (almost as high as Denali, formerly Mount McKinley)
- Walls built: 65,600 square feet (equal to 1.5 acres)
- Embankment/excavation earthwork: 963,500 cubic yards
- Reinforced concrete pipe and boxes installed: 2,663 linear feet (7 times the length of a football field)