IRTBA Honors 2011 Outstanding Contractors

These highway and transportation contractors showed adaptability, creativity, cooperation, consideration and economy on projects.

The Illinois Road and Transportation Builders Association hosted the 2011 Contractor of the Year Awards, the state's largest gathering of transportation design and construction professionals, earlier this month. The ceremony is an opportunity for those who have achieved particular success to be recognized by state agencies and colleagues alike. This year's group of winners shows adaptability, creativity, cooperation, consideration and economy.

"These awards demonstrate how our members strive every day to fulfill IRTBA's purpose to protect, improve and promote the transportation design and construction industry in Illinois," said Woodie Griffin, of James D. Fiala Paving Co., and Chairman of IRTBA.

Three major transportation agencies - the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), the Illinois Tollway, and the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) - along with collar county departments of transportation and METRA recognized companies that have given taxpayers an exceptional return on their investment by exceeding project expectations.

IDOT named Martam Construction Inc. of Elgin, winner of the Cement Concrete Pavement Award for the roadway reconstruction, widening, and additional lanes on 22nd Street in Oak Brook; Plote Construction, Inc. of Hoffman Estates, winner of the Hot Mix Asphalt Award to recognize resurfacing and bridge rehabilitation on I-55 in Chicago and surrounding cities; Walsh Construction Company of Chicago, winner of the New Bridge Construction Award for the staged construction of three railroad bridges, two highway bridges, and numerous retaining wall systems to replace railroad viaducts in Harvey.

The Illinois Tollway gave its nod to Plote Construction Inc. of Hoffman Estates, for roadway and bridge rehabilitation on the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) on time and under budget. The project included a 20-mile stretch of roadway pavement and bridge rehabilitation.

James McHugh Construction of Chicago, was recognized by the City of Chicago Department of Transportation for the Wacker Drive Viaduct Reconstruction Project from Randolph Street to Monroe Street.

IRTBA recognized former IDOT Director of Highways Christine Reed with the Friend of the Industry Award, a special award and the highest honor bestowed by the Board of Directors of IRTBA.

"We owe a debt of gratitude for the years Christine Reed brought a keen understanding of the private sector and industry issues to the table," Griffin said.

Bigane Paving Co., of Chicago, had the distinction of receiving IRTBA's Diversity Award for the second year in a row. The industry continues to make progress in reaching a greater degree of workforce diversity. Three DBE firms were given exceptional DBE awards from the Tollway and CDOT.

The Green Achievement Award was presented for the first time to a state agency, the Illinois Tollway, for their innovation and dedication to sustainability. The Green Achievement Award is given by IRTBA's Green Council, a group of its members dedicated to employing green, sustainable practices in the transportation industry.

"The Illinois Tollway has gone above and beyond, fostering innovation, new technology and developing the resources and research to support these initiatives," said IRTBA CEO Michael Sturino.

Additional awards were given to contractors in a number of categories. More information on all of these award recipients can be found at