Excellence in Concrete Award

The Calhoun County Road Department (CCRD) was recently presented with an Award of Excellence by the Michigan Concrete Association for the culvert replacement project on Halbert Road over Waubascon Creek in Bedford Township. The designers, contractors, and suppliers involved with the project also received recognition, including prime contractor Balkema Excavating; supplier Northern Concrete Pipe; and engineer Wightman & Associates.
"The Halbert Road Culvert Project is an important example of what is accomplished with strong partnerships and a focus on excellence. This award recognizes CCRD's commitment to innovative solutions and high-quality results," said Kristine Parsons, Director of Engineering at CCRD.
Through a collaboration between the Calhoun County Road Department, engineers at Wightman & Associates, and Northern Concrete Pipe, a curved precast concrete culvert solution was developed for this complex site that met all of the challenges and provided a long-term solution for the road improvement.
“After diverting the stream, Balkema dewatered the culvert bed and installed a 6-inch thick concrete sleeper slab to set the culvert on,” explained Dan DeGraaf, MCA Executive Director. “The precast sections were delivered within a three-day window and installed quickly without incident using a crane.” The culvert was then backfilled, the fill compacted, and pavement placed over top.
As a result of the high quality of the precast structure and the forethought that Balkema Excavating put into the execution of the culvert construction, the structure was installed ahead of schedule and under budget. Each stakeholder on the project team demonstrated a high level of communication, teamwork, and commitment to excellence that ultimately made this culvert installation an unqualified success.
Each year, MCA recognizes the best concrete projects and presents awards to contractors, engineers, and agencies for their work. More than 45 road, highway, airport, industrial, commercial, and residential construction projects were submitted to the 2020 MCA concrete awards program, and 25 of those projects received recognition. Nominated projects were judged based on quality, safety, construction process, complexity, innovation, and aesthetics.
The Halbert Road Culvert project won the award in the “Structural Concrete – Small Transportation” category. The panel of judges that rated all of the nominated projects noted that this project showed a great example of teamwork and partnering during construction, and high quality workmanship in the finished product.

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