TxDOT releases statement on Harbor Bridge Project engineers

CORPUS CHRISTI – The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT)released a statement earlier today with an important announcement regarding the engineers involved with the Florida bridge collapse.

TxDOT said in the statement that it has instructed Flatiron/Dragados LLC (FDLLC), the developer of the US 181 Harbor Bridge Replacement Project in Corpus Christi, to remove FIGG Bridge Engineers Inc. (FIGG) from any future work on the main spans of the project.

TxDOT previously alerted FDLLC that it was suspending FIGG’s design work to fully review the October 2019 findings by the National Transportation Safety Board and its investigation into the March 2018 bridge collapse in Florida. FIGG was the design firm responsible for that project. The findings regarding FIGG are significant enough for TxDOT to request a replacement design firm for the New Harbor Bridge main spans.

The main spans can generally be described as the cable-supported, signature portion of the bridge that will cross the Corpus Christi Ship Channel.

“As we have done since the inception of this project, TxDOT will continue oversight of all design work, including work performed by the replacement design firm in the future,” TxDOT’s Chief Engineersaid Bill Hale said. “TxDOT is committed to taking the time necessary to carefully ensure and verify that the highest safety standards are met, as we do with all projects.”

The replacement design firm will be tasked with reviewing and recertifying the current design as well as recommending modifications, if necessary.  This development could result in delays to the project and, as more detail becomes available, TxDOT will share any effects this may have on the project timeline.

Work on all other aspects of the project continues to move forward, including drainage, roadway and overpass construction and reconstruction of a major new interchange at I-37/US 181/SH 286. All construction undergoes an extensive quality review and acceptance process. TxDOT has ensured that all construction work completed to date on the project is safe and has been built in compliance with contract requirements and specifications.

“We look forward to delivering on the promise of this project,” said Hale, “which, when complete, will be a significant improvement over the existing bridge by enhancing mobility for motorists and by allowing larger ships to access the Port of Corpus Christi.”

More information will be featured in the next edition of The News of San Patricio.