MAJOR EFFORT: Floodwall Drain Replacement Requires Round-the-Clock Effort

Downtown-Railroad-Floodwall-Work_Aug2016 (3) WEBUpdate 7/28/16: The project has been delayed one week due to rainy weather forecasted. The project is expected to begin at 6 a.m. on Aug. 8. It was originally slated to begin on Aug. 1.
The clock starts ticking Aug. 8 for an intense 60-hour schedule on a major floodwall project in downtown Cape Girardeau. The work is essentially:

  • Move and replace 1,000 feet of railroad track.
  • Remove and replace 600 feet of drain piping along the floodwall.
  • An estimated 800 dump truck loads of material will be excavated and removed in addition to new material to be placed and compacted for the new railway alignment.

Work requires use the Broadway and Water Street parking lot, which remains closed through the project.
The work is also complicated due to the tight nature of the work space and that the work will be performed by two different groups. One group is the BNSF Railway crew removing and replacing the rails. The other group is Randy Kinder Excavating, a contractor working for the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers to remove the old railway ballast rock, remove and replace the drain piping, and then place and compact the new ballast rock for the new rail tracks.
“And all of this is scheduled to be completed in about 60 hours,” said Assistant Public Works Director Stan Polivick.
Funding for the project is shared by the City of Cape Girardeau and the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers. The City contribution is approximately $1.6 million – funded from Parks and Recreation and Stormwater Tax revenue – which pays for the work to remove and replace the rails, and the necessary right of way and easements for the work zone. The Corps of Engineers is paying for the drain pipe replacement and the new railway bed preparations. The Corps contract is approximately $1.35 million. The Corps of Engineers also did the project design work.
“This project is a critical element  for the proper maintenance and operation of the floodwall system that protects downtown Cape Girardeau. It has been quite a challenge to develop and implement the necessary partnerships with the various involved groups. But, it has also been extremely rewarding to successfully accomplish that feat and to work with some really good people to pull this major project together,” said Polivick.
The City has partnered with the Corps of Engineers for approximately $18 million worth of work over the last nine years. For this project, the City has partnered with the BNSF Railway for the track relocation work. The Corps staff and BNSF staff had to work closely together to coordinate the necessary elements of the work components so the schedule could be kept as short as possible. The City also worked closely with the property owners adjacent to the work area to secure permanent necessary right of way and temporary easements.

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  1. Photos: Floodwall and Railroad Project, August 2016

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