Category Archives: Project Management

See what local firms can do with concrete



The DJC’s annual special section on concrete is now available. Its focus is on award-winning projects by members of the Washington Aggregates & Concrete Association.

There’s also a great article by Melanie Cochrun of GLY Construction on how her firm used 600 workers to make two record-setting concrete pours earlier this year in Bellevue.

Check it out!


Check out what’s happening in the local construction scene



The DJC has published its annual Construction & Equipment special section. It’s a mix of industry articles, profiles of local award-winning projects and a few interviews with the contractors who make it all happen.

Read all about it at


Video shows near miss at pontoon construction site

This week, the state Department of Labor & Industries cited Kiewit General Joint Venture for safety violations related to crane operations at the SR 520 bridge pontoon construction site in Aberdeen.

L&I says it started an inspection in June after a 13,000-pound concrete counterweight fell as it was being lowered from a Potain crane. The video below shows the incident where the falling concrete block just misses two workers as its cable snaps.

L&I is fining Kiewit General $170,500 for one serious and three willful violations. The charges include failure to follow several manufacturer’s recommended changes after being notified of problems with flawed or defective lifting lugs on the counterweights.

L&I also says Kiewit General did not follow the manufacturer’s recommendation to use alternative safety rigging on the counterweight.

News reports say Kiewit disagrees with the violations being called “willful” and may file an appeal.

Kiewit General in the spring expects to finish the last three of the bridge’s 21 longitudinal pontoons at the Aberdeen site.

The last of the smaller stability pontoons floated out of a Tacoma casting basin earlier this month. They were built by a joint venture of Kiewit, General and Manson.

Watch Atkinson make quick work of SR99 bridge over Broad Street

The state Department of Transportation made a time-lapse video of last weekend’s work on SR99 that required closing the highway for several days.
Crews from Atkinson Construction and subcontractor Dickson Co. took just 48 hours to replace the section of SR 99 that crosses above Broad Street. They demolished the old roadway and then added fill to the now-closed section of Broad to level it up with the rest of the highway.
The highway reopened Wednesday.
Nice work!

Video courtesy of WSDOT

General contractor needed for CPAR Board

The state has an opening for a general contractor representative on its Capital Projects Advisory Review Board. Applications are due by March 14.

The board evaluates public capital project construction processes and advises the Legislature on policies related to public works delivery methods. There are 23 members on the board, including four legislators and five political subdivision representatives.

Board members must be knowledgeable about public works contracting. They serve four-year terms and can be reappointed once.

Applications can be found at Questions can be directed to Molly Keenan, or (360) 902-4110.

DJC profiles the Apple Cup of construction


Just in time for the Apple Cup football game, the DJC has put together a special section profiling construction projects at the UW and WSU.

Included is a list of the top 10 projects at each school. Who gets bragging rights? If you go by dollar volume, the nod goes to the Huskies, with just over $900 million. That’s more than twice the value of WSU’s top 10.

UW also has the top project: the second phase $186.3 million expansion of the UW Medical Center. WSU’s top project is the $96 million Veterinary and Biomedical Research Building. Of course, WSU’s list of projects includes a $23 million Wine Science Center stocked with 3,500 bottles of wine.

For those wanting to watch football, the Apple Cup will be held Nov. 29 at Husky Stadium – another new project!

Under construction forever

The following post is from Jason Kane:

According to the Bible, God created heaven and Earth in seven days. Proving that humans are no gods, some men have been constructing buildings for an eternity. It’s understandable that circumstances arise where a building can’t be finished on time. However, most of the following examples of buildings under construction forever can be blamed on the folly of men.


Hotel of Doom

The Hotel of Doom under construction in North Korea has suffered under fits of start-and-stop delays for nearly three decades. The 105-story hotel was ordered by Dear Leader No. 1, Kim Il-sung, to proclaim the greatness of his communist slave-labor state. Started in 1987, the construction disaster is composed of three jagged sides to form a pyramid but with no windows or other amenities like rooms, plumbing, lighting or a bar to sip a drink. The name of the hotel, Ryugyong, means Capital of Willows, telling people what to eat when times turn tough. Construction has taken longer than Lady Gaga sobering up from a weekend whiskey binge.


One World Trade Center

Once the politicians got involved, everyone knew it would take forever to rebuild the Twin Towers that were destroyed on 9-11 in New York City. True to form, our beloved politicians can’t even agree on a name for the new building much less its design. Started in 2006, the One World Trade Center, also known as Freedom Tower, is plodding along and still unfinished.


The World

The wealthy sheiks in Dubai like to build things big with their oil wealth, and The World is no exception. Designed to replicate the world, this construction project is taking place on a series of man-made islands in the shape of a world map to represent the planet. The chief sheik, Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, is begging investors to build gambling resorts on the islands. To date, $18 billion has been spent. Thus far, a single home has been built, and engineers are warning that the islands are sinking. Bookies are taking bets on the day it sinks like Atlantis.


International Space Station

The International Space Station (ISS) is a $100 billion ongoing construction project started in 1998. The ISS began as a noble experiment for nations to live together and perform lofty experiments for mankind. That, however, went out the window when a Ukrainian astronaut demonstrated how to chase a shot of vodka around in zero-gravity. The ISS is expected to be completed in 2015, and then scrapped. Till then, it’s party time at the ISS Saloon and Lab.


Jason Kane is a former construction worker and avid blogger. Jason writes for Fall Protection USA, a supplier of self-retracting lifelines and other construction safety equipment.


Greenfire flames environmental passion

While Bullitt Center is grabbing headlines as the greenest commercial building in the world, a project in Ballard is taking green building a step further by dedicating about half of its site to urban gardens and open space.

The DJC is profiling the Greenfire Campus project in a special section.

Greenfire’s office building will use about 70 percent less energy than a typical office, and its apartments will use 42 percent less. All that urban agriculture will be fed by two cisterns that store stormwater runoff.

Expect to see more projects like this in the future.