Southerly Wastewater Treatment Plant

Client: The City of Columbus, Ohio

The Challenge

The City of Columbus committed to substantial improvements of the collection systems and treatment plants under the City's Wet Weather Management Plan (WWMP). This plan was devised to conform to the requirements of the consent order, agreed to by the City of Columbus and the State of Ohio. The treatment plant projects required 'orchestration' so that previous tasks would be completed in order for the later tasks to be started. The work included construction of three Final Clarifiers at each plant where an existing Effluent Control Building (ECB) is located and construction of a new Effluent Pump Station (EPS) and Outfall Sewer to replace the existing ECB. This EPS includes a new effluent pumping building, flushing water building, effluent metering building, sampling chamber, and an outfall conduit to the Scioto River.

The Interdisciplinary Approach

Of these projects, the construction of the new Effluent Pump Station and Outfall Sewer was of extreme importance. If this project was delayed due to weather, labor issues, the economy or any other reason, the 'domino' effect would be costly both economically to the City, through cost overruns as well as through fines imposed for failing to meet the consent order. The prevailing mind-set of the City, Design Professional (DP), Plant Personnel, Program Managers, Construction Managers, and General Contractor (his sub-contractors and vendors) was to resolve all issues thus avoiding possibly missing the final deadline. This would require excellent communication, cooperation, and timely resolution to submittals, requests for information as well as expediting change orders and field orders.

The Sustainable Result

The Construction Management Team (CMT) consisted of the Professional Program Management Team (City and Design Professionals), Construction Manager (including an Assistant), and Field Representatives (Inspectors). The CMT worked closely with analyzing whether 'accelerating' (or buying time) a portion of this critical path project would be a wise investment or a total bust. The team's thoughts were that if certain buildings were 'enclosed' before severe weather, critical work on the interior of these buildings and delivery of vital equipment, could be made during the winter months. All parties involved- City, CMT, Contractor and his subs, signed off on this ambitious plan in June 2008- to have at least four (4) buildings under roof before severe weather (late November to early December). The communications between the City-DP-CMT-Contractor were excellent. Chester Engineers assisted the CMT by providing the Assistant Construction Manager along with two (sometimes three) Field Representatives. Combined with the other members of the CMT, Senior Construction Manager and two additional Field Representatives, the goal was reached. The EPS had four buildings under roof and ready to receive the equipment and instrumentation designed for each. The pay-out- this critical path project was completed, while sustaining two potential floods and extreme cold temperatures through the winter of 2008-09, and was functioning by the deadline of June 1, 2010.

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