On Monday, May 1, 2023, the West Virginia Division of Highways (WVDOH) awarded a contract to stabilize a rockslide-prone section of mountain high above US 340 near Harper’s Ferry. The contract is from a bid letting held by the WVDOH on Tuesday, April 11, 2023.
Triton Construction Inc. was low bidder on the project, with a bid of $10,277,500. The project will require closing US 340 from September through December to remove rock and install rockfall barriers above US 340 where it hugs the Shenandoah River just south of Harper’s Ferry. US 340 is a high-traffic volume corridor carrying about 24,500 vehicles a day including local, commuter, and truck traffic from West Virginia, Virginia, and Maryland.
The contract calls for stabilizing the corridor through rock slope scaling, localized rock bolting, and removal of potential large scale rockfall hazards. Additionally, the slope will have rockfall mitigation efforts including draped and pinned mesh, ground-level rockfall barriers, and on-slope rockfall attenuator systems.
A posted detour around the project area during work will be WV 9 and Virginia SR 9 and Virginia SR 671. Work is being scheduled after Memorial Day and before Christmas to lessen the impact on the traveling public.
US 340 along the Shenandoah River was built in the mid-1950s. The cut slopes and exposed rock tower from 150 to more than 300 feet above the roadway. WVDOH will remove rock and install barriers to minimize potential hazards to the traveling public.
The WVDOH is working closely with the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) to coordinate the project.
For other construction contracts awarded by the WVDOH on May 1, click here.
Several factors are considered before awarding a bid, including whether a bid falls above or below the WVDOH Engineer’s Estimate and by what percentage. In cases where a bid is above the Engineer’s Estimate, WVDOH must consider the project need, repercussions of not awarding the project, additional funding sources, and whether sufficient reasons exist for the differences in estimates. Most projects are reviewed, analyzed, and awarded within a week of the bid letting, but the process can take longer.
When the Division of Highways has a project that is determined to be best constructed by a contractor, it is processed through the bid letting system. A letting is a scheduled opportunity for contractors to review and bid on several construction projects at one time. Lettings are held either once or twice per month and conducted through the Bid Express System online at www.bidx.com and handled through the Contract Administration Division. Contractors need to subscribe to Bid Express before bids can be accepted on any project.