After successfully completing Stage 1 of the SR-14 Rehabilitation Project with a flawless safety record, the Guy F. Atkinson Project Team is making great progress on Stage 2 with their paving work, which includes two dozen 55-hour weekends.

The Atkinson crew floats the new JPCP on SR-14 through Lancaster.

The team proposed and implemented an alternate stage configuration, which included three crossovers on the north segment of the project. The overall benefits of the alternate staging plan includes a safer work zone for workers, a reduction of overall traffic impacts to the traveling public, a two-month savings to the overall project schedule, and a higher quality product by converting 82,000 cubic yards of rapid setting concrete to conventional concrete pavement. To date, the Atkinson Team has poured more than 50,000 cubic yards of concrete in the construction of the Jointed Plain Concrete Pavement (JPCP) in lane 2 and the inside shoulder.

The Atkinson crew works through the night pouring two new approach slabs.

Stage 2 of the SR-14 Project involves the rehabbing of the roadway through Palmdale and Lancaster, from the Technology Drive Undercrossing in the south to the Avenue A Overcrossing at Diamond Jim’s Casino in the north. Project work started in May 2023 and the projected completion is December 2025. The full Contract Value of the project is $160,193,801.

The Atkinson Project Team includes Superintendent Ryan Hester, Project Manager Brian Presti, and Construction Manager Kevin Nguyen.

The Atkinson Project Team at the conclusion of Stage 1 of the SR-14 Rehab Project are, left to right: Robert Garcia Jr, John Marez, Angel Mata, Jose Salazar, Albert Ramirez, Jeremy Proffitt, Jacob Valentine, Conrado Garay, Daniel Jones, Quentin Bills, Duminda Dias Abeygunawardena, and Martin Frausto. Not pictured is Sean Abbie. The Batch Plant Crew includes Thomas Snider, Edward Silva, and Chatwin Jimenez.

The total scope of the project encompasses: 80 lane miles of pavement reconstruction; the removal of 1.5 million square feet of existing asphalt shoulders, both inside and outside, and replacing them with Jointed Plain Concrete Pavement (JPCP) – the same as the new highway lanes; and reconstruction of 16.4 lane miles of existing ramps and connectors. The new JPCP will improve the ride quality of SR-14 and provide a service life of at least 40 years with minimal maintenance required.

Looking south on State Route 14 Avenue D, showing the crossover traffic configuration.

In addition, approximately 10,000 square feet of bridge approach slabs are being replaced, 18,270 linear feet of new guardrail are being added, rehab work is taking place on 82 light fixtures and 21 overhead sign structures, and 243 sign panels are being replaced.

Two census stations, which monitor roadway usage by obtaining vehicle volume, vehicle class, and vehicle weight volume are being constructed, along with 16 Vehicle Detection System monitors, whose capabilities include spotting over-height vehicles moving toward overhead obstacles such as bridges, tunnels, and other structures, and warning drivers in advance. ADA Elements – 19 curb ramps and 25 Accessible Pedestrian Signals – are being installed, and Storm Water Mitigation is being incorporated into this stretch of SR-14.

Atkinson located their batch patch just a mile from the center of the project.

More than 211,000 cubic yards of JPCP and 70,000 cubic yards of Lean Concrete Base (LCB) are going into the project. The concrete that’s being removed from the existing roadway is being recycled at the Atkinson yard off Avenue H, a mile from the central point of the project. The project team is using a crusher from Hi-Grade Materials on the extracted concrete, which will then go into the LCB mix. Hi-Grade is also supplying the aggregate for the concrete mix. The asphalt that’s being extracted from the shoulders is being milled to be used as Class 3 base material. The Atkinson yard also houses the batch plant for the project’s concrete.

State Route 14 crosses the Mojave Desert and the severe environment challenges even the best paving crews.

One of the challenges that the team has had to deal with is the extreme fluctuation in temperature in the Antelope Valley of the western Mojave Desert. Working conditions get brutal for the crew as winter temperatures drop to 20 degrees and soar to 100 degrees in the summer, which also greatly affects the curing of the freshly poured concrete pavement. Extra steps are being taken by the team to ensure proper strength is achieved.