KCA received a 2014 “Award of Merit” from Engineering News-Record (ENR) Southeast for excellence in project management, innovation, safety, quality, and teamwork. The Chain of Lakes Trail Pedestrian Bridge project was selected for this prestigious industry award in the Small Project (under $10 million) category.
Located in Winter Haven, Florida, the Chain of Lakes Trail is a multi-use path that stretches along a 3.6-mile corridor from downtown Winter Haven to US Highway 17/92 in Lake Alfred. The trail serves Winter Haven’s population with a place for bicyclists, joggers, or walkers. The bridge over Avenue T is a vital link to connect the trail’s southern end to the northern portion, which connects to the McKay Preserve Trail system and into downtown Lake Alfred. As a testament, the City’s Mayor, Nat Birdsong, said during the grand opening “I never envisioned this would be a trail, and I’m extremely proud and happy to see this day.”
The overpass provides safe and convenient passage for trail users to cross Avenue T, instead of walking to the nearest intersection, which was a key issue for the City. The busy east-west Avenue T. cut the trail roughly in half and was an obstacle in people using the entire trail. Avenue T was unsafe for walkers and bicyclists. “People weren’t crossing at the crosswalk, which is very dangerous,” Winter Haven Police Department spokeswoman Brown said. “This is going to be a huge benefit to those driving, as well as those using the trail.”
The project consists of a low-profile prestressed concrete bridge with its approaches supported by retaining walls, 4:1 sloped embankment to reduce retaining wall height, Keystone decorative retaining walls, trailhead tie-ins, sidewalk connectors, drainage, and signing/pavement marking. The bridge’s low profile is achieved by a system of precast deck panels supported by the bottom flange of custom prestressed beams. The single-span bridge is 107 feet long, with a clear travel width of 12 feet. The total bridge approach length is 620 feet, with cast in place concrete steps provided near the bridge supports for sidewalk access to/from Avenue T.
An independent jury of design and construction industry leaders judged this year’s ENR Southeast’s Best Projects entries for top recognition in 12 specific categories.
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