STH 42, Lincoln Avenue, City of Two Rivers (Manitowoc County), WI
Contractor: Vinton Construction Company
Owners:  Wisconsin Department of Transportation and City of Two Rivers, WI
Engineer:  McMahon Group                            

The reconstruction of STH 42 (Lincoln Ave) in the City of Two Rivers included a complete replacement of all facets of the transportation system.

The first set of operations included replacement of all sanitary sewer, storm sewer, and water main facilities, including lateral and service facilities. Private sewer laterals and water services that were found to be defective were replaced from the right-of-way into residential and commercial buildings during construction.

The pavement typical section consisted of 6-in. base of dense aggregate beneath 8-in. of jointed plain concrete pavement with dowels. A thicker typical section with 16-in. of select crushed material was placed on the southern half of the project to address poor subgrade soils.

Bike paths and alternating side parking presented challenges throughout the entire project. New sidewalks were constructed throughout the project were constructed to enhance the connectivity of the corridor. An off-road multi-use trail was constructed on the north end, with ultimate plans to extend the trail toward Two Rivers High School. Aesthetic enhancements included LED street lighting, colored concrete crosswalks, and more than 100 trees planted within the right of way. Restoration, including sod in the terrace areas, rounded out the project providing an immediate finished look.

Wisconsin DOT officials were quoted in the state award presentation, saying, “Vinton performed exceptionally all the way, from prior to the project beginning through the end of the project.”

Advance communications provided residents and business owners an understanding of what to expect. Quick completion of advance work allowed Vinton to start pouring concrete almost a month ahead of schedule. Once the paving operations started, Vinton planned their operations strategically, maximizing the time available to complete other tasks, according to the Wisconsin DOT.

Vinton focused on completing the south half while utility work continued on the north end. Using zero-clearance pavers and belt placers allowed all mainline concrete to be placed without sacrificing pedestrian access.  The contractor also reduced project costs by $200,000 through the recognition of different subbase soil conditions.  Because the soils were very good, and sand was well-drained on the north end, they contractor saved money for the DOT by eliminating the same crushed material used on the south end.

Forward thinking was also evident in the decision to delay the pouring of the colored concrete on the project. Waiting until almost all other work was complete allowed subcontractors to start their work sooner to have greater access to the work site. The quality of the colored concrete was also enhanced in that it was more uniform, and the timing prevented any unsightly marks on the new surface from other operations, the DOT added.

With 10 paving gaps planned on the project, there was a good the ride quality would have been affected, but Vinton coordinated with the city officials and business owners to eliminate every gap, creating continuity and a smooth ride on the mainline pavement. 

Communication with the city and the DOT highlighted a potential issue with the closing of 35th Place, the northern-most intersection on the project.  Many local motorists were using this intersection as a shorter detour route around the construction. Although contract documents allowed the intersection to be closed, Vinton identified a solution to avoid unnecessary impacts to that traffic. Instead of closing the intersection, Vinton constructed a temporary bypass, allowing the intersection and mainline pavement to be completed without interruption to the normal traffic flow through the intersection.

Foresight and communication were keys to resolving issues, often well before they became big problems. With vast experience in urban construction, Vinton was well suited to handle all that was presented, resulting in outstanding performance and construction.  The result was a project that Vinton Construction Company, Wisconsin DOT, McMahon Group, and the City of Two Rivers will be proud of for decades to come.