California Construction News staff writer
The California High Speed Rail Authority has announced the completion of the Cedar Viaduct in Fresno, a 3,700-foot viaduct for trains travelling at 200-plus mph over State Route (SR) 99, Cedar and North avenues.
Tutor-Perini / Zachry / Parsons is the contractor for a 32-mile construction contract spanning from north of Madera to American Avenue south of Fresno, began work at the site in mid-2015 with blast testing of pilings used to support the viaduct.
“At almost three-quarters of a mile long, the Cedar Viaduct is one of our largest and most visible structures across the alignment and one of the significant achievements to date on the program,” said Central Valley Regional Director Garth Fernandez. “The completion of this structure was made possible by our dedicated project team and by the numerous women and men in Labor who brought the project to life.”
A dual span of cast-in-place arches will help support the weight of future high-speed trains traveling across the deck of the structure. Each arch spans 179 feet and is nearly 40 feet tall. Each dual span of arches are staggered from either side of the bridge, so they can be seen from both sides of the highway.
The Cedar Viaduct is part of Construction Package 1, the first 32-mile stretch of high-speed rail between Avenue 19 in Madera County and East American Avenue in Fresno County.
Since the start of construction, more than 10,000 construction jobs were created, with a majority going to residents from the Central Valley. This includes 3,429 that have gone to residents from Fresno County, 1,946 from Kern County, 1,033 from Tulare County, 442 from Madera County, and 369 from Kings County.
Work has begun to extend the 119 miles under construction to 171 miles of future electrified high-speed rail from Merced to Bakersfield. There are more than 30 active construction sites in California’s Central Valley, with the Authority having environmentally cleared 422 miles of the high-speed rail program from the Bay Area to the Los Angeles Basin.