Design firm HNTB, Kansas City, Mo., and contractor Walsh Construction, Chicago, have been awarded a design-build contract from the Ohio Dept. of Transportation to construct the first of two new spans that together will become Cleveland’s new Innerbelt Bridge. The twin-structure bridge will replace the existing 51-year-old, single-structure Innerbelt Bridge, which will be demolished. The firms’ work on the five-lane $278.4-million first span is expected to begin next spring and be completed by fall 2013. Construction of the eastbound section will be a separate contract awarded after the westbound span is completed.
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.