Duck Key Bridge Updates

5/6/2022 Update: American Empire Builders (AEB) constructed and installed the rebar cage for the end bent on the east side of the Bimini Bridge. The contractor performed the pile splice for the remaining pile on the west side of the bridge and drove the pile on May 4. The pile did not achieve the specified capacity; therefore, an additional splice must be performed. The contractor will advise on the impact to schedule once information is received from suppliers.

FKAA’s contractor will be performing some site restoration at Bimini Drive Bridge before demobilizing from the site.

FKAA’s contractor completed the borings and has pulled the pipe for all three lines at Seaview Drive Bridge. They mobilized at Harbour Drive Bridge this week to begin the subaqueous boring for the waterline. The sewer and reclaimed water lines will follow. Final tie-ins for the lines at both Seaview and Harbour Drive bridges will be scheduled after installation at Harbour has been completed.

In anticipation of future bridge replacement projects at Harbour and Seaview Drive bridges, Florida Keys Electrical Cooperative has been coordinating with the engineer of record to identify items that will need to be relocated so this work can be performed before the bridge replacement projects.  

4/22/2022 Update: American Empire Builders (AEB) completed the excavation of unsuitable material on the west end of the Bimini Drive Bridge in preparation for forming and pouring the concrete footers for the wall on that side of the bridge; approximately 10 truckloads of material were excavated and removed from the site.  

Weather permitting, the concrete pile splice on the west end will commence the week of April 25; the contractor is planning to perform the splice on Wednesday, allow for the epoxy to cure, and then drive the remaining pile at the end of the week or early the following week. Upon completion of the pile driving, construction of the wall on the west end of the bridge will begin.

The time needed to design, fabricate, and construct the pile splice has resulted in an extension of the project schedule of two months; the scheduled completion date of the project is April 2023.  The contractor will work to reduce the project time where possible. 

The contractor has fabricated the rebar and forms to construct the concrete pile cap on the east side of the bridge at an offsite location. The contractor anticipates constructing the pile cap in the next two week. 

FKAA’s contractor completed the final tie-in of the underwater line at Bimini Drive Bridge on April 6; the boring sites were backfilled and compacted and a “punch list walkthrough” of the site was performed this week to identify additional site restoration needs. 

FKAA’s contractor completed the borings and have pulled the pipe for all three lines at Seaview Drive Bridge; the pipeline contractor will remobilize at Harbour Drive Bridge on May 2 to perform underwater utility installation there. Final tie-ins for the lines will be scheduled.

In anticipation of future bridge replacement projects at Harbour and Seaview Drive bridges, Florida Keys Electrical Cooperative has been coordinating with the engineer of record to identify items that will need to be relocated so that this work can be performed prior to the bridge replacement projects. 

4/8/2022 Update: American Empire Builders (AEB) continues with constructing the MSE wall on the east end of the Bimini Bridge. The contractor has been placing the select fill in 6-inch lifts, compacting it, and testing the density of each lift before beginning the next. The concrete pile fill and within 3 feet of the MSE wall panels must be placed by hand and compacted using a small walk-behind compactor per the technical specifications. The work was temporarily halted from April 4-8 to allow FKAA’s contractor to mobilize to the site to complete the final tie-in of the subaqueous waterline. The tie-in is complete, and FKAA’s contractor is performing site restoration.

AEB has been working offsite to fabricate the rebar and prepare the forms for the concrete pile cap that will be constructed at the east end of the Bimini Drive Bridge.

The third pile on the bridge’s west end will require a splice to drive the pile to a deeper depth; the additional length of the concrete pile is being fabricated and is scheduled for delivery to the site on April 22. Once it is onsite, AEB will complete pile installation on the west end of the bridge and continue constructing the MSE wall on the west end.

FKAA’s contractor mobilized to Seaview Drive Bridge to perform the subaqueous installation of the three lines. They completed the boring and pulled the pipe for the forcemain and reclaimed waterlines on the north side of the bridge.

3/9/2022 Update: American Empire Builders (AEB) continues with constructing the MSE wall on the east end of the Bimini Bridge. The contractor completed the sheet pile installation on the west end of the bridge and completed the installation of two of three concrete piles. The third pile needed to be driven to a deeper depth to reach capacity; the contractor will be submitting an RFI with his proposed solution, which will be reviewed and approved by the Engineer of Record. Vibration monitoring continues during the work as required by project specifications. All readings have been within allowable levels. AEB will also be forming and pouring the footers for the MSE wall on the west end of the bridge beginning the week of March 14.

FKEC removed its temporary line from the Bimini Bridge on February 23; the area is now clear for FKAA’s contractor to perform the final tie-in of the waterline, which should occur within the next two weeks.

AEB completed work on the west lane of the Harbour Drive Bridge and opened both lanes for traffic on February 18.   

The contractor completed the strengthening work on Seaview Bridge and opened both lanes up to traffic in December 2021. FKAA’s contractor has the equipment and material on-site and plans to perform subaqueous installation of the water, sewer, and reclaimed lines at Seaview Drive Bridge. FKAA plans to conduct a pre-drilling meeting on site the week of March 14 in anticipation of the contractor mobilizing later that week. Upon completing the utility work at Seaview, FKAA plans to move to Harbour Drive bridge to perform subaqueous installation there.

2/11/2022 Update: American Empire Builders (AEB) is proceeding with construction of the MSE wall on the east end of the Bimini Bridge; the crane moved to the west end, and the contractor began installing the sheet pile wall on the west end. This work will continue through the week of Feb. 14 and will be followed by installing the concrete piles on the west end. Vibration monitoring is being performed during the work as required by project specifications. All readings have been within allowable levels.

FKAA’s pipeline contractor completed the tie-in of the sewer and reclaimed water lines at Bimini and will complete the final tie-in of the water line once the sheet pile wall installation is complete.

In response to an inquiry by a resident, Monroe County’s inspection team confirmed that the completed pile driving report and the signed and sealed as-built information for the piles on the east end of the bridge indicate that the piles are installed in accordance with the plans and meet all of the structural requirements outlined in the construction plans and specifications.        

AEB completed the deck installation on the west lane of the Harbour Drive Bridge and formed the diaphragms for concrete placement next week along with the approach slabs. Guardrail will be installed during the week of Febr. 14, and the anticipated date for the opening of both lanes is Feb. 18.  

The contractor completed the strengthening work on Seaview Bridge and opened both lanes up to traffic in December 2021. FKAA’s contractor has material on-site and plans to mobilize to perform subaqueous installation of the water, sewer, and reclaimed lines at Seaview Drive Bridge in the next two weeks. Upon completing the utility work at Seaview, FKAA plans to move to Harbour Drive Bridge to perform subaqueous installation there.

Utility Relocation - FKEC Work Status

Several new poles have been installed near the project area as well as underground contractor tasks are being completed that are required to be done prior to the new Bimini Drive Bridge.  

  • The temporary overhead tie line will be constructed Feb. 17-19, weather permitting.  
  • The associated system reconfigurations will follow, tentative to start Feb. 22.
  • Underground contractor work going on north of the bridge and on Vista lane for the next week or two.

 For questions, contact: Michael J Roberge, Director of Engineering, Florida Keys Electric Cooperative, Office: 305-852-1034, Cell: 231-675-8500. 

Aerial view of the Duck Key bridges and islands affected


The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) inspectors advised that three interior Duck Key bridges that affect Harbour Island, Plantation Island, and Yacht Club Island need to be replaced.

Weight Restrictions

As of Nov. 18, 2021, there are no longer weight restrictions on any of the Duck Key bridges. Florida Legal loads can cross. 

Due to the width and geometry of the strengthened lanes on Harbour and Seaview Drive bridges, there is a restriction for tractor-trailers. This restriction will be lifted when Phase II, reconstruction of the second lane on both bridges, is complete.

Marine Traffic Update: Bimini Bridge

The contractor has secured construction barges underneath the Bimini Drive bridge as of Jan. 21, 2021.  The barges will remain in place for the duration of the project and will block all marine traffic underneath the bridge until the anticipated project completion date of June 30, 2022. The contact person for the Construction Engineering and Inspection (CEI) consultant for this project can be submitted to keith.duke@wsp.com.

Timeline

The date is subject to change and will be updated accordingly.

The design team has finalized the construction plans for the bridge strengthening at Bimini Bridge and is in the design phases for the temporary strengthening for Harbor and Seaview bridges. The design team has already begun coordinating with the Coast Guard for approval since the installation of beams will reduce the clearance under those bridges. The completed bridges will be at the same height as the original bridges. 

Permits

Active unexpired building permits affected by the weight limits on Bimini, Seaview, and Harbour Drive bridges will not be required to get inspections until 180 days after a solution for delivery of materials is available. If someone with an open permit is able to proceed by other means before that time, they may do so.

Garbage Service Updates

Garbage service is no longer affected by bridgework. Contact Monroe County Solid Waste Management at 305-292-4432 or Marathon Garbage Service at 305-743-5165 for additional information. 

Background

The Bimini Bridge, constructed in 1955, was already scheduled for replacement. County staff accelerated the bidding process for the Bimini Bridge with an estimated contract period to complete the replacement is 18 months. The County approved a strengthening plan for the existing north lane of the Bimini Bridge. This will allow one lane of traffic to cross while the south side of the permanent bridge is being constructed. The strengthened section will allow Florida legal weight limits to cross without a reduced weight load. Bimini Bridge affects Harbour, Plantation, and Yacht Club islands and also connects to the Harbour Drive and Seaview bridges.