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The Initial Cost of the Collapse

Page history last edited by Steve Escher 12 years, 4 months ago


The collapse of the 35W bridge in Minneapolis, Minnesota on August 1, 2007 was devastating in every aspect of our lives. The shock wave of effects ranging from concerns about the safety of our infrastructure to concerns over terrorism were felt by everyone all over the country, and the world.



There were four construction companies vying for the chance to rebuild our bridge. The winner of the bidding consists of a company out of Colorado named Flat Iron Construction and another out of Seattle named Manson Construction. Even though their bid was higher and their time line was longer, their technical score was above that of the other companies.







Who Will Rebuild Our Bridge?




Technical scores are rated as follows:



Quality - 50 percent

Experience and authority of key individuals - 20 pts

Extent of quality control/quality assurance -10 pts

Safety - 10 pts

Measures to evaluate performance in construction - 10 pts

Aesthetics/Visual Quality - 20 percent

Visual enhancements to the structure - 10 pts

Involvement of the public after letting - 10 pts

Enhancements -15 percent

Roadway enhancements 10 pts

Structural enhancements - 5 pts

Public Outreach/Involvement - 15 percent
Impacts to the public
Approach to communications

                                                         (MNDOT, 2008)



Here is a breakdown of Proposalists and their technical scores:


St. Anthony Falls (I-35W) Bridge Design-Build Project

Proposal Evaluation Process

Technical Evaluation Results



 Technical Review Committee
Ames/Lunda C.S.McCrossan Flatiron/Manson Walsh/AB
 Tom O'Keefe


70.4 76.7 89.75 77.05

Wayne Murphy

Associated General Contractors

53.0 59.1 88.5 71.3
 Tom Styrbicki
 53 71.4 95.3 68.95
 Terry Ward
 56.65 70.85 94.55 68
 Heidi Hamilton
 City of Minneapolis
 55.45 62.60 87 66.3
 Kevin Western
 47.4 54.8 93.7 55.7










                   (MNDOT, 2008)




Flat Iron Construction has constructed several bridges in San Fransisco, and rebuilt the Escambia Bay Bridge in Florida after Hurricane Ivan destroyed it in 2004.



                         Escambia Bay Bridge, Florida.

                         December 16, 2006 by puffadust


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Manson Construction has experience in building piers, including U. S. Navy Piers 10 and 11 in San Diego, Ca.


Figg Engineering is the design team working with Flat Iron. Figg Engineering has a design example in the Wabasha Bridge in St. Paul.



   Wabasha Beidge. Minneapolis, MN.                                                                              Wabasha Beidge. Minneapolis, MN


   March 16, 2008 by tboard                                                                                              July 19, 2007 by kisokiso                                                                 


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Daily Costs


First Few Days: Overtime for Police Officers: $2 million. Projected to be $6 million when the bridge is done (Williams, August 2007).



Traffic Re-routing:


Trucking: The Minnesota Trucking Association's  president, John Hausladen, says back in 2000, the estimated cost to the industry of the 35W bridge's closure was about $125,000 a day. "So if you take that with the fuel price increases and things, we think the trucking piece could be almost twice what it was in 2000," Hausladen said. That means the current hit would be $250,000 in extra costs per day (Baxter, Aug. 2007).


Paving Costs, Lane Re-striping, and other Public Works Projects: $65 million (Scheck, October 2007).


Lost Parking Meter Fees: A report said the city applied for $1.2 million to cover parking meter revenue along University and Hennepin Avenues (Chang, February 2008).



The Cost of Rebuilding


Clearing the Debris


According to 35W Bridge Collapse Debris Removal Grant Agreement, grant funds from the MWMO (Mississippi Watershed Management Organization) may be used for the purchase of equipment, design, installation and use, and technical services related to the development of best management practice for the removal of debris in the Mississippi River related to the collapse of the 35W Bridge on August 1, 2007. Payment obligations of the grantor will not exceed $50,000 dollars.


The MWMO wants to support work undertaken by MNDOT staff to best accomplish removal of debris at the 35W Bridge collapse site. To help facilitate this, the MWMO Board of Commissioners, at a special meeting on August 7, 2007, voted to

grant up to $50,000 in emergency funds to match MNDOT funds for use in developing methods to accomplish debris removal in a big river like the Mississippi River. In the end, the MWMO would like MNDOT and other local and state agencies to have an operations procedure, CAD drawings, written specifications, etc. developed as to how to approach this and similar future events (Stenlund, August 2007).



Victims Compensation


A new bill modeled after the September 11 victims’ compensation package will cover compensation for lost wages, medical expenses, burial costs, and other expenses not covered by other sources. Estimates are that the fund would have between $30 million to $60 million. A Democratic state senator intends to introduce an additonal bill that would cap claims at $400,000. He and another House member also are working on an amendment to bar lawyers from recovering fees from the fund. (Chang, February 2008).


Two Minnesota state lawmakers said Friday (May 1, 2008) that they have reached a deal to compensate victims of the Interstate 35 bridge collapse that killed 13 people in Minneapolis last year.



State Sen. Ron Latz and state Rep. Ryan Winkler told CNN Radio that the deal totals $38 million and will be presented to the Legislature for approval.

Latz said the deal would expedite compensation to victims who chose to take their portion of the settlement and waive their right to sue the state.


The plan addresses a key sticking point in negotiations: preserving a state liability cap on awards to individual victims, Latz said.


Winkler said victims will be able to collect up to $400,000 and people whose damages exceed $400,000 will be able to pull from a supplemental pool of more than $12 million.


"There are a 182 potential claimants out there," Winkler said. "There were 13 dead, and there were 12 catastrophic injury cases." (CNN, 2008).



Rebuilding the Bridge


Flatiron Constructors said they can build the bridge for almost $234 million and will finish it in 437 days.  Flatiron's bid is the most expensive proposed with the longest time line to finish construction but its technical score was higher than the other companies who bid. The three losing bidders will receive a $500,000 stipend each for submitting proposals (Scheck, September 2007).





Additional Bridges That Require Funding for Replacement or Repair



In addition to the following two bridges, a 2007 report found there are 16 bridges in the state which are in critical need of repair.  Five of those 16 have been closed and 1 more has its closure pending (Minnesota Department of Transportation, 2007).


Over the last 10 years, the the Bridge Inspection and Construction and Maiternance Charges have increased from $57.7 million in 1997 to $192.1 million in 2007. This includes maintenance, repair and replacementof existing bridges and construction of new bridges. These expenditures are for the bridge structure only and do not include approaches or right of way costs included in the project (Minnesota Department of Transportation, August, 2007).



The DeSoto Bridge in St. Cloud


As state and federal investigators went underneath the DeSoto Memorial Bridge Wednesday to inspect steel joints in the bridge's center span, state transportation officials announced they will decide in two weeks whether to fix the bridge, or build a new one at a cost of $35 million.


St. Cloud Mayor Dave Kleis, who gave Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., a tour of the idle bridge, said he'd like to see the 49-year-old structure replaced as soon as possible. (The week of March 16's) bridge closing, a rare occurrence in the state, has prompted the rerouting of 30,000 vehicles a day over the Mississippi River in downtown St. Cloud.


During the mayor's tour, Minnesota Department of Transportation officials who work in St. Cloud said soil borings, environmental assessments and preliminary design work are underway to support an immediate rebuilding project, should MnDOT choose that option.


The bridge was closed indefinitely to traffic after inspectors found slight bending in four gusset plates underneath the center span. The inspection was in keeping with an NTSB directive for states to check gusset plates on bridges similar to the fracture-critical Interstate 35W bridge in Minneapolis, which collapsed Aug. 1. Adecision will be made on April 10 (Kennedy & Diaz, March 2008).



The Hwy 61 Bridge in Hastings


MnDOT now wants to begin the process for replacing the troubled Hwy. 61 bridge in Hastings, with construction to start in 2010. The replacement of the Hastings bridge wouldn't have been expedited without this year's transportation spending bill, which the Legislature passed despite Gov. Tim Pawlenty's veto, Sieben said. "We now have the money to do it,'' she said. Speeding the replacement process for the Hastings bridge was not because of any immediate safety issue and noted that the bill mandates the state to replace certain types of bridges by 2018.


The decision to begin construction of a new bridge over the Mississippi River at Hastings by 2010 is a stark departure from MnDOT's previous stance. Rather than any acute finding that the bridge is in trouble, MnDOT's reversal is a matter of money and greater scrutiny of bridge decisions in the aftermath of last summer's collapse, according to Hasting's Mayor Paul Hicks.



State bridge inspection reports from 1997 through 2007 indicate that the structure's physical condition has worsened over the years as MnDOT has deferred maintenance work on corrosion, broken bearings, rotting sidewalks and crumbling concrete. Like the 35W bridge and the DeSoto Bridge, the 58-year-old Hastings Bridge is fracture-critical, meaning that if one steel beam or connection breaks, the whole thing could fall down (Foti & Kennedy, April 2008).





Chang, Ivy. (February 28, 2008). I-35W Bridge Collapse: Week 28. Minnesota Public Radio. Retrieved March 30, 2008 from http://www.acppubs.com/article/CA6534519.html.


Scheck, Tom. (September 19, 2007). Rich Conract Awarded for I-35W Bridge Replacement. Minnesota Public Radio. Retrieved March 30, 2008 from http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2007/09/19/bridgebids/.


Baxter, Anita. (2007, August 23). How much does it cost when a bridge goes down? Minnesota Public Radio. Retrieved arch 9, 2008, from http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2007/08/23/bridge_cost/.


Williams, Brandt. (2007, August 9). Minneapolis' Budget Strains Under Weight of Bridge Collapse Costs. Minnesota Public Radio. Retrieved April 2, 2008. from http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2007/08/09/strain/.


Scheck, Tom. (2007, October 14). Cost of Rebuilding I-35W Bridge Go Beyond Concrete and Steel. Minnesota Public Radio. Retrieved April 2, 2008, from http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2007/10/12/bridgedetails/.


Stenlund, Dwayne. (2007, August 9). Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP): St. Anthony Falls 35W Bridge Removal Prevention of Impacts. Minnesota Department of Transportation. Retrieved April 11, 2008 from http://www.mwmo.org/35W_SWPPP_Aug09.pdf.


Kennedy, Tony and Diaz, Kevin. (2008, March 27). St. Cloud Bridge Faces Final Judgement. A decision will be made by April 10On whether the DeSoto bridge in St. Cloud will be replaced or repaired. Star Tribune. Retrieved April 11, 2008 from http://www.startribune.com/local/17037286.html?page=1&c=y.


Foti, Jim and Kennedy, Tony. (2008, April 10). St. Cloud, Hastings bridges are put on fast track for replacement. Startribune.com. Retrieved April 11, 2008 from http://www.startribune.com/local/17458449.html.


2007 Inspections: Critical Findings Report. (2007). Minnesota Department of Transportation. Retrieved April 11, 2008 from http://www.dot.state.mn.us/i35wbridge/statewide_inspections/inspections.html.


Bridge Inspection and Construction & Maintenance Charges. (2007, August 16). Minnesota Department of Transportation, Office of Finance. Retrieved April 2008 from http://www.dot.state.mn.us/i35wbridge/pdfs/bridge__expenditures_updated-aug29.pdf.


Contractor Selection: I-35W Bridge Contractor Selection. (2008). Minnesota Department of Transportation. Retrieved April 16, 2008 from http://www.dot.state.mn.us/i35wbridge/rebuild/contractor.html.


$38 million deal reached in Minn. bridge collapse. (2008, May 2).CNN. Retrieved May 3, 2008 from http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/05/02/bridge.collapse/index.html.


Comments (1)

pierc188@... said

at 6:49 pm on Apr 20, 2008

The table needs some revisions done to it so that it no longer overlaps with the navigation bar, I tried to see if it could be done easily but I didn't want to mess with it too much for fear of information loss. link url's were fixed as well. The MWMO acronym did not have an explanation as to what this stood for the first time it was used, I made a guess as to what organization this referred to and I hope I was correct.

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