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Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program wins ACEC's top engineering award

Thursday, May 9, 2019 - 10:32

Laura Newborn, Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program communications, 206-805-2871; 206-639-8577 (mobile)

The equivalent of the 'Academy Awards' in the engineering world

SEATTLE – The Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program has been awarded one of the nation's top engineering achievement awards: The 2019 Grand Conceptor Award from the American Council of Engineering Companies.

The Grand Conceptor Award is given to the nation's best overall engineering project. This year there were 196 projects competing. WSP USA, the general engineering consultant on the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program, shares the award with the Washington State Department of Transportation.

"There are thousands of talented people who worked many years to make the replacement of Seattle's seismically vulnerable Alaskan Way Viaduct a reality. They all share the credit for this prestigious award," said Brian Nielsen, administrator of the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program.

The cornerstone of the $3.3 billion Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program is the 2-mile-long SR 99 tunnel, the largest diameter single-bored road tunnel in North America. The tunnel opened in February 2019 and carries a double-deck highway underneath downtown Seattle.

"The SR 99 tunnel set new standards for tunneling worldwide," said Secretary of Transportation Roger Millar. "Not only does this tunnel move people through Seattle, but it cleared the way for Seattle to reimagine its downtown waterfront."

Work is well underway to tear down the seismically vulnerable Alaskan Way Viaduct, which carried SR 99 along Seattle's waterfront before the new SR 99 tunnel opened. The demolition creates the space for the city's plans to renovate the waterfront in Seattle.

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