East Washington Ave. Madison, Wis. Winner: Urban Arterials
East Washington Ave. Madison, Wis. Winner: Urban Arterials

Washington Avenue is considered to be the gateway street to the Wisconsin State Capitol. It's a six-lane median-divided roadway that carries 56,000 vehicles per day. The asphalt pavement was installed in the 1950s and was rutted and severely cracked.

Trierweiler Construction, Marshfield, Wis., won the contract to completely remove and replace 4.6 miles of the street. At the same time, a completely new infrastructure was planned, including the replacement of all water mains, sanitary sewers, storm sewers, pavement, curbs and gutters, crosswalks, medians, and lighting. Starting on March 15, 2004, with a December 1 completion date, the construction timetable was short. In May and June there were substantial rainfalls—the worst being 6.2 inches of rain during one week of May just when crews were installing the new 5x10-foot storm drain. Added to the difficulty was the city requirement that two lanes for traffic be open in each direction at all times.

Trierweiler installed 50,311 square yards of 10-inch-thick concrete pavement over a total of 22 inches of aggregate subgrade. Elevations and pitches were critical, and the owner also required a smooth ride of 20 inches per mile on a 0.2-inch blanking band, which Trierweiler exceeded. An unusual feature of the project involved colored crosswalks. Trierweiler accomplished this by paving the crosswalk areas with the street pavement, then masking the street pavement on either side, broadcasting dust-on color hardeners and finishing them. They applied the same surface texture to both the streets and sidewalks. They also installed colored, patterned concrete hardscape in the medians.

  • Contractor: Trierweiler Construction
  • Engineers: HNTB Corporation / Ayres Associates
  • Sponsor: Wisconsin Department of Transportation
  • Owner: City of Madison, Wisconsin

View all the winners and finalists of the American Concrete Pavement Association's 16th Annual Excellence in Concrete Pavement Awards.