Two Decades of Roadway Revolution: Driving the Future with GDOT

Two Decades of Roadway Revolution: Driving the Future with GDOT
Georgia Department of Transportation Tifton, GA
GDOT’s Tifton District and CDM Smith have partnered for over 20 years to improve transportation infrastructure in the region. CDM Smith’s team of Construction, Engineering and Inspection (CEI) experts are providing on-call services to guide complex corridor and bridge improvements.

For over two decades, the GDOT Tifton team has called upon CDM Smith’s trans­porta­tion CEI experts to help them deliver some of their most challenging projects in the 31 counties of Southwest Georgia. Together, they’ve improved roadways and bridge structures in the largest GDOT field district, collab­o­rat­ing to provide construc­tion inspection and materials testing on hundreds of projects, valued over $3 billion. 

As Joe Cowan, senior project manager, explains, “These are rela­tion­ships built on mutual respect, shared commitment, and the drive to construct quality road and bridge projects that will last for generations.” Cowan enjoyed a 30-year career with GDOT prior to tran­si­tion­ing to CDM Smith a decade ago, and he’s had the unique opportunity to power their mission forward from two distinct, yet aligned, points of view. “It’s been a natural evolution – both of our missions are very similar in the delivery of innovative, safe, sustainable trans­porta­tion solutions. The trust GDOT has in CDM Smith is evident in our long-term rela­tion­ship.”

years of partnership between GDOT and CDM Smith
contracts improving roads and bridges
billion dollars in combined value of projects delivered

One of the most significant accomplishments spanned from 2001 to 2011. Over that decade, CDM Smith’s CEI team supported GDOT in improving 85 miles of I-75 from Valdosta to Cordele, Georgia in a series of eight separate corridor improvement projects, valued at over $800 million in construction. These efforts included the single largest project in the history of the Tifton District: a $150 million mega-endeavor to widen and reconstruct 6.9 miles of I-75 mainline, as well as nine bridges on I-75 from exit 99 to the Dooly County line at milepost 104. In this series, CDM Smith helped GDOT implement the first three design-build projects in the Tifton District.

GDOT also entrusted the team to work with their engineers on a unique bridge replacement for the region. It was the first balanced cantilever, cast-in-place, post-tension bridge in the area. From 2012 to 2015, CDM Smith provided staff with national post tension and grouting certifications on the complex, .207-mile bridge replacement over the Flint River in downtown Albany, Georgia. The new bridge spans 741 feet long, and specialized bridge inspectors familiar with GDOT construction methods oversaw every step of the project.

As part of our ongoing support, CDM Smith’s Tifton CEI team provides contract administration and EEO compliance reviews for any federal aid work. During the engineering phase, our team participates in GDOT’s field plan review process and reviews project constructability, verifies contract items and quantities and participates in the drafting of special provisions to ensure resources are used efficiently. These reviews help GDOT to improve overall construction plan quality, which can reduce plan errors, omissions or contract modifications, saving GDOT time and money.

It’s an honor to serve GDOT as they implement lasting and high-quality infrastructure solutions for South Georgia communities.
Joe Cowan, CDM Smith senior project manager

Our partnership with GDOT thrives on our ability to offer the best solutions to meet their needs. This often means leveraging modern technology and proven method­olo­gies. The project team has adapted new technology such as the E-Ticket for the digi­tal­iza­tion of asphalt production, transport and placement and drones to capture aerial photos and document construc­tion progress. CDM Smith is also supporting GDOT with imple­ment­ing design/build and A+B bidding for alternative delivery.

GDOT and CDM Smith have established a long-term working rela­tion­ship built on collab­o­ra­tion, shared commitment, and success. Over the course of two decades – and counting – GDOT is fortifying the state’s trans­porta­tion infra­struc­ture with the help of the most dedicated CEI experts in the game. 

Joseph Cowan Joseph Cowan
It’s been an honor to play a role in the transportation solutions our team has implemented with GDOT.

See our transportation CEI work