Richmond Firm Takes Top Award
RK&K Wins Pinnacle Award
Virginia’s top engineering award, the 2018 Pinnacle Award for Engineering Excellence, was presented to a Richmond firm, Rummel, Klepper & Kahl (RK&K), at ACEC Virginia’s Engineering Excellence Award Gala held February 1st at the Jefferson Hotel in Richmond. RK&K was recognized for its lead design work on the Route 29 Solutions Design Build Project in Albemarle County. RK&K was one of four engineering firms competing for the Pinnacle, and one of 14 firms in ACEC Virginia’s 2018 Engineering Excellence Awards Competition. Judges for the Pinnacle Award Competition included: John Dunlap, Dunlap & Partners Engineers of Richmond; Malcolm Kerley, President of NXL in Richmond; Steve Cofer, architect, NAVFAC Mid-Atlantic of Norfolk; R Lindley Vaughan Jr, retired engineer of Dunbar Milby Williams Pittman & Vaughan; and Glenn Rehberger, retired engineer of CH2M.
RK&K was the lead designer on the $126 Million project, which consisted of the following three distinct project elements: Route 29 and Rio Road Grade Separated Intersection (GSI); Route 29 Widening from four lanes to six lanes for approximately 1.8 miles from Polo Grounds Road to Towncenter Drive; and Berkmar Drive, an extension of 2.3 miles on new alignment from Hilton Heights Road to Towncenter Drive. RK&K was supported in design by three major subconsultants, Whitman Requardt and Associates, Rinker Design Associates and Schnabel Engineering. The contractors were a joint venture of Lane Construction and Corman Construction.
This award focused on the Rio Road GSI, in which RK&K was the design leader. Key project elements included:
“The judges were impressed with all that RK&K did to help solve decades old traffic problems along Route 29 in Albemarle County through the City of Charlottesville and they reduced the time it took to complete the project,” noted Nancy Israel, Executive Director of ACEC Virginia, the statewide association of Virginia engineering firms. “They opened up bottleneck traffic problems, improved stopping sight distance that had caused numerous traffic accidents, took traffic off Route 29, directing it to a parallel road network. And amazingly they did it in almost half the allotted time frame, completing the work between the University of Virginia’s graduation and the first home football game, both peak traffic times.”
Also competing for the Pinnacle award were three other Virginia engineering firms who won Grand Awards in the Engineering Excellence Awards Competition. These three Virginia Beach firms were: Clark Nexsen, HDR and WSP.
- A design that has reduced travel times in the corridor by 20% and reduced accidents at this major intersection by 50%.
- Improved mobility for through traffic while improving pedestrian and vehicular accessibility to local businesses in the corridor.
- Enhanced the corridor with architecturally treated walls, decorative pedestrian lighting and landscaping.
- Innovations, such as the first ever bridge of its kind in Virginia, which led to a $7.3 Million incentive bonus for early completion and opening of the intersection.