May 11, 2018 - Issue #7

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It is now evident there is progress on the new bridge.  All of the work this past month has been above water, and those who are following construction can witness the pier construction that will support the new bridge.  "The weather and river levels have generally cooperated, allowing us to stay on schedule," said T.J. Colombatto, project manager with Massman Construction Co.
Massman Construction Co. was recently recognized by the Illinois Department of Transportation for the "Above and Beyond Award" for their role in providing a diverse work force.  "We are grateful for the recognition and thank all those who have helped us in earning it," said Michael Massman, design-build coordinator for Massman Construction Co.
News to note this month is the Saturday public update will be held June 2 at the new overlook in Riverview Park at 10 a.m. in Louisiana.  It is being moved from the last Saturday of the month (May) because of the Memorial Day weekend.  In the event of inclement weather, the update will be held at the project village at 120 S. Water Street.

MoDOT Maintenance Crews Get an Up Close Look at Project

After maintaining and repairing the existing Champ Clark Bridge for many years, the Bowling Green maintenance crews had the opportunity to get an up close look at what they will likely have to deal with in the future when they toured the construction site.  To put it simply, they are excited!  "Our goal is to ensure the bridge is safe, and when we have to close it because of a safety hazard, or even if it's just for necessary maintenance, not only does it take a lot of time, but it's also inconvenient for drivers who rely on the structure," said Maintenance Supervisor Roy Niemeyer.  "The entire site was fascinating, and we can tell by the quality of the workers on the bridge that this is going to be an exceptional addition to the region," he said. "It impressed me the pier size up close.  When we look at it from the top, it doesn't do it justice compared to when you are at the base," he added.
bg crew
Some of the Bowling Green Maintenance employees who got the tour included Randy Bland, Cindy Martin, Roy Niemeyer, Allen James, Doug Graf and Josh Waelder.
Safety With  A Little Spice
Every morning, several dozen craft workers and Massman Construction Co. employees working on the new bridge take a few minutes to stretch and limber up as a group, as well as review work for the day. While the stretching is routine, the second week of May is designationed Construction Safety Week, an industry-sponsored week to rouse awareness about the continuing commitment to eliminate worker injury.  Following their routine exercises each morning, the crews were refreshed on unique safety aspects of working on a barge in a river each day.  From selecting the proper harness to man overboard procedures and fall protection, a safety component was focused on each day.  "While safety is a serious topic and we are constantly focused on keeping ourselves and each other safe, we did incorporate some fun into the training," T.J. Colombatto explained.  The "life ring toss" friendly competition, featured in this video, helped prepare the crews to save someone should they go into the water.  T.J. said later that day, after the competition and a review of man overboard procedures, a dummy was thrown off the barge as a man overboard drill unbeknownst to the workers.  Fortunately, someone spotted it immediately and initiated life saving procedures.  "We're glad to report no dummy was harmed in the process and successfully was retrieved from the water," T.J. said.  Massman Construction Co. also hosted an appreciation lunch and provided crews with safety week shirts and hats.

 two piers and crane

These red objects above may look like something found on a NASA launching pad, yet they are actually forms placed over the rebar.  Once concrete is poured and set, the forms are removed.  Four of the eight columns have been poured to date.

inside pierThis is an inside look at the column form and steel.  Inspectors like Joe Smith, who provided this picture, have to climb down inside the form to check the spacing between the rebar cage and the form.  "We need good spacing for the concrete to fill in around it," he explained. 



Saturday CC Bridge Update

Public Invited to the Monthly Progress Meeting

Saturday, June 2

10 a.m. at the NEW Riverview Park Outlook

John Henderson Park, Louisiana

Congratulations to Hannibal High School

hhs stem

Hannibal High School’s interpretive panel design won the STEM Challenge and will be constructed in Louisiana’s River View Park upon completion of the demolition of the existing bridge.

“Hannibal’s proposal incorporates lattice beams, gusset plates, rivets and a plaque from the existing bridge into their interpretative panel design, documenting the significance of the historic bridge,” said Champ Clark Bridge Project Director Keith Killen.  Photos of their winning design, along with other photos from the competition, are featured on MoDOT's Flickr site.

Science Technology Engineering Math (STEM) has recently been prevalent in local schools. The purpose of STEM is to familiarize students and encourage them to pursue occupations within these fields of study.

"We wish to thank and congratulate all the schools who participated, and we look forward to working with them on future projects," Killen said.

massman awardMassman Receives Award

The Champ Clark Bridge project received the Above and Beyond Award from the Illinois Department of Transportation in recognition of its accomplishment in exceeding the Project DBE and Workforce Diversity goals in 2017. IDOT’s Director of Business & Workforce Diversity specifically commended the Project’s performance given its location ninety minutes outside of St. Louis. Michael Massman and Lynne Tavernaro from Massman Construction Co. accepted the award from IDOT Secretary of Transportation Randy Blankenship.  Michael Massman is pictured above with Secretary Blankenship.


historiansSpecial thanks to everyone who attended last month's update which featured three historians who shared information about the construction of the 1928 Champ Clark Bridge, how it received its name, and the environment and culture in the area.  We appreciate Karen Daniels and Ashley Porter with MoDOT and Brent Engel from Louisiana for sharing their knowledge with attendees.

Did you know?

The Champ Clark Bridge opened to traffic on May 12, 1928 and was originally constructed as a toll bridge.  It was adopted into the state highway system in 1953.


job fair cropped

Massman Construction held an employment information session in early May for interested individuals to learn more about trade apprenticeship programs and potential careers in the construction industry.

For all pictures of work, go to MoDOT Northeast District's Flickr site.  

The web cam can be found under the Construction tab of this site.