Jewett says that the subcontractors that Superior relied on were essential to quality of the work and the completion of the job on time.
"Within the restrictions of the bidding process we had some very capable subs who did a great job," Jewett says. "We put some pressure on our subs to give us their best people and it was pretty easy to convince them to give us some of their better people. This was not only a big job for us but it was a big job for them too."
And they cooperated as well.
"At the first preplanning meeting we told them we needed good communication and cooperation if it was going to get done on time," Jewett says. "It was a team effort and they did a great job for us."
Mahobian also credits the subcontractors working with Superior Bowen Asphalt.
"Superior Bowen is an asphalt contractor, but this time they were a prime contractor. That's a very difficult job to take on and they selected a fine group of subcontractors to support them," Mahobian says. "Not only did Superior Bowen do a great job coordinating the work and all the people working on the job, but I really feel we have to give credit to all the subcontractors because they really pitched in and did a fantastic job."
A "vertical look"at the job
One of the first subcontractors Superior Bowen turned to was Jim Kidwell Construction Corp., Greenwood, MO. Adept in CAD work, Kidwell Construction provided Superior Bowen with "vertical" CAD drawings showing the overlap of all the various underground systems, which helped Superior Bowen determine the order of work on each of the parking lots.
For example, after installation of storm and water lines, Superior Bowen had the electrical lines installed at a depth of not less than 24 inches, which protected the lines from the stabilization work that was to come.
"Once we established who was going to go in what order vertically, then we could determine horizontally how the project would progress," Jewett says.
And the plan, guided by field superintendent Ivan Nelson, was to follow electrical installation with, in order:
The parking lots were large enough that more than one job could be done on a particular lot at the same time, which Jewett scheduled and coordinated.
"There often was paving on one half of a parking lot and stabilization going on on the other half of the lot," Jewett says.
The idea, largely successful, was that once a contractor began work on the job, he would be able to complete his work and not have to work in stages.
"There was a lot of coordination on each one of the parking lots and among each of the lots," Jewett says. "We tried to schedule it sequentially so a contractor was at the site and would move from one lot to the next as soon as he was finished. That enabled them to be on the site continuously, which made it easier to coordinate our work.
"We knew if we didn't have areas ready to pave every day we would not get the asphalt paving done in one season."
He says much of the coordination was communicated through small progress meetings Superior Bowen held with the owner, the engineer, and the subs. Jewett says that to streamline the planning process and require people to spend less time in meetings (and help them be more productive), work was divided into three main segments: site work, bridges, and buildings with separate meeting times.
"When we had meetings we only brought in the people who needed to be at those particular meetings," Jewett says. "We tried not to have people waste their time sitting in a meeting they really didn't need to be in and I think that worked well and everyone appreciated it."
Quality from the bottom, up
Jewett says that while many problems can occur in the actual paving of a job, much of the success or failure of a new construction paving job depends on the preparation of the base and subbase. And that was the case with this project.
"By the time we got to the paving work we pretty much had all the problems solved," Jewett says. "There was really nothing unusual about the paving, except the scale of the job."