Major Reconstruction Done On US-131

By Aram Kalousdian, Editor | September 28, 2010

An approximately 11-mile reconstruction project on US-131 in Kalkaska and Antrim counties began in May and it was completed in October. The project included hot mix asphalt (HMA) paving and asphalt and concrete pavement removal with miscellaneous drainage and safety improvements. The road is two lanes. Approximately 2 miles of northbound and southbound passing lanes (one lane in each direction) were also added.

"We took it down to the new sand subbase and graded the sand subbase. Then we installed 6 inches of 22A aggregate and fine graded that. Then we applied three lifts of asphalt, which included 3 inches of 3E3 base mixture, 2 inches of 4E3 leveling course and approximately 1-1/2 inches of 4E3 wear course," Jeff Saylor, project manager for Rieth-Riley said. Rieth-Riley, of Traverse City, was the prime contractor for the project.

Material quantities included 27,000 tons of 3E3, 63,000 tons of 4E3, 2,700 tons of approach, and 300,000 square yards of aggregate base.

"The biggest problem was coordinating the businesses on the highway. We had to keep numerous businesses up and down the project open at all times," Saylor said.

Equipment that Rieth-Riley used on the project included a Cat 245 excavator for the pavement removal, a Cat 14G grader for the fine grading, a 10-foot Blaw-Knox paver, and three Ingersoll Rand rollers.

Rieth-Riley's equipment division handles the maintenance on the company's equipment fleet. Maintenance is done on the job site.

"All of the equipment maintenance is done according to hours of usage. We get a report on when a piece of equipment is due for servicing. We have a mobile truck that goes around and services equipment in the evenings, after we're done working," Saylor said.

Saylor said that Rieth-Riley does most of its maintenance in-house, but occasionally the company will have it done by another company.

"Michigan CAT played a big part on this project. They were located right on the site. They provided us with some rental equipment. They were a lot of help on that project," Saylor said.

Subcontractors included: P.K. Contracting, of Troy (pavement marking); Dale Dukes & Sons, Inc., of Big Rapids (guardrail); and Lois Kay Contracting, of Saginaw (milling).

Rieth-Riley's foreman on the project was Mike Whitten and the paving foreman was Dave Hilton.


Project: US-131 reconstruction in Kalkaska and Antrim counties

Prime contractor: Rieth-Riley, of Traverse City