Lake City's Interstate 15 (I-15) was named the 2002 Outstanding
Civil Engineering Achievement (OCEA) by the American Society
of Civil Engineers (ASCE). Past OCEA winners include the Whittier
Access Project, the relocation of the Cape Hatteras Light
Station, the Denver International Airport and the World Trade
The I-15 project is the largest public works project ever
undertaken using an engineering and construction method known
as 'design/build.' Design/build can shorten the time needed
to complete a project, but its success requires highly effective
Presented this evening to the Utah Department of Transportation
at the Outstanding Projects and Leaders (OPAL) gala celebration
in Los Angeles, the award recognizes the project for its significant
contribution to civil engineering progress and to Salt Lake
City's community. I-15 was selected from among six outstanding
project finalists throughout the United States. In total,
there were 33 entries submitted for consideration.
"The I-15 project has contributed greatly to Salt Lake City's
ability to stage the successful Salt Lake 2002 Winter Olympic
Games, and will continue to serve the area's residents for
years to come," said H. Gerard Schwartz, Jr., P.E., ASCE president.
"The Interstate exemplifies the ideals of innovation, technical
excellence and community benefit."
In announcing the selection of the I-15 project, the jury
noted that the project was completed in just four years, half
the time that would have been needed using traditional approaches,
and came in $32 million under budget. Jurors also noted the
innovative use of materials, such as lightweight Styrofoam-known
as geofoam-in the embankments. The project was nominated by
the Utah Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers
on behalf of the Utah Department of Transportation.
Since 1960, ASCE has named a project as an Outstanding Civil
Engineering Achievement. The prestigious national award recognizes
civil engineering projects that contribute to community well-being,
demonstrate resourcefulness in planning and solving design
challenges, and use innovative construction methods.
The OPAL awards gala was first held in April 2000. In addition
to celebrating outstanding civil engineering projects, the
OPAL awards honor professional civil engineers for lifelong
contributions in five categories - public works, construction,
management, design and education.
Dr. Dawit Negussey, Director of the Geofoam Research Center
(GRC), was the geofoam technical consultant for the I-15 project.
GRC was involved in material behavior studies, design and
instrumentation during construction and in long-term performance
monitoring in post construction. The I-15 project is the largest
geofoam project to date in the US and one of the largest in