Bridge Abutments Are Almost Done

The crews have been hard at work of late and have made great progress on the bridge abutments for 3 of the 4 future bridges. The actual bridges will be installed in late winter of 2016, but these abutments really start to give you an idea of what the finished trail will look like.

Drill Rig

Step 1: Bring this huge track mounted drill up the canyon.

Mayhem Drill Rig 2

Step 2: Drill 2 caisson holes down to bedrock. No easy task with all the large cobble found throughout the canyon.

Drilling Maygem Caissons

Step 2: Little by little.

Cannoball WEst Footer 2

Step 3: Pour concrete footers on top of the caissons.

Cannonball West Footer

Step 3: The concrete must cure before the area is back filled.

Cannonball West Framing

Step 4: Once the footer is back filled, the framing for the abutments goes up.

Mayhem Pumping

Step 5: Bring a pump truck in and pour the abutments. Each abutment requires two concrete trucks.

Mayhem Abutments

Step 6: Strip the forms off and wait.

Mayhem Abutments 2

Now you can really get a feel for the final elevations. The bridge will sit in the notch and the final bridge deck height will be even with the top of the walls on the sides.

6 thoughts on “Bridge Abutments Are Almost Done

  1. Great step-by-step description and photos……really helps picture the work and scale of the project…….keep the updates coming!

  2. I am increasingly amazed at the damage being done to the stream bank along the creek. Where the trail crosses back to the road side of the creek looks like hell with a ton of trees removed and replaced with huge piles of rock to support the trail bed. This project is destroying the riparian habitat along the stream in several areas. The wall along the creek above Mayhem Creek area again has removed many stream side trees and replaced them with a pile of rocks and for some reason a brick wall???? What is the purpose of the wall? Why not a railing like other parts of the trail? This use to be a nature healthy streamside forest. Now it is an ugly scar. The bridge abutments are also ugly and in no way blend into the surroundings. I was told that no environmental impact study was done for this project and was not required. No way this project would have proceeded if this was done .

    • Thank you for your comment and we can appreciate your concern for the natural habitat in Clear Creek Canyon. You are correct, this project did not require an Environmental Impact Statement or an Environmental Assessment because federal funds are not being used on the project, and thus, no federal nexus. This does not mean that this project is not permitted and regulated at the federal, state and local level. We were required to go through an extensive permitting process. Before construction began we needed permits from the US Fish and Wildlife Service, the US Army Corps of Engineers, the Colorado Department of Transportation and Jefferson County. Additionally, Colorado Parks and Wildlife was consulted with to ensure fish habitat was not negatively impacted.

      The mission of Jeffco Open Space is rooted in land stewardship. This ethos is front and center in every project we work on, regardless of size. It is of the utmost importance to us that this trail is be placed and aligned in the most efficient manner possible, with the least amount of impact to the surrounding area. The design-build team in charge of this project was chosen for many reasons, but their philosophy and ability to use a surgical approach to minimize impacts to the natural area is one of their biggest strengths. This approach has been evidenced regularly in the project to date. We have frequently shifted the trail alignment to save large trees. In many cases we have moved the trail higher up the slope in order to keep the trail further away from the creek and leave as many trees along the creek as possible.

      The wall you reference above Mayhem Gulch is a necessity to raise the trail above high water. Without this, the trail would be unusable and a severe safety risk during spring runoff each year. As with other areas you noted up canyon, there will be a railing installed on top of this wall as well. The majority of this project is not yet finished, including the bridge abutments. The finished product will look much different and more aesthetically pleasing. Once the area is back filled and the bridge installed, only a small area of the wing walls will remain exposed. These exposed areas will be clad with a native colored stone to offset the stark contrast of the bare concrete.

      This project is part of a larger project to connect 65 miles of trail of statewide significance. It will create a safe and beautiful passage through this canyon and will improve recreational opportunities for hikers, cyclists, kayakers and rafters, anglers, climbers prospectors and other outdoor recreation enthusiasts.

      • Peakstoplains, I love this project. Will there be a grand opening/ ribbon cutting when you are done?

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