Ketchikan Spruce Mill Dock Replacement
West constructed the $4.3 million Spruce Mill Dock in Ketchikan, Alaska for the City of Ketchikan. The project was completed within the contractually required performance period which were winter months because the Ketchikan waterfront is visited by up to 5 cruise ships per day during the summer tourist season. As it turned out, record rainfalls hit Ketchikan (which is one of the wettest places in Alaska) during this time. Despite these adverse weather conditions, West was able to maintain its scheduled production.
The project involved replacing the aged wooden Spruce Mill Dock, which was constructed in the early 20th century, with a new state of the art steel and concrete structure. West crews began work in October 2005 by removing 30,000 square feet of the existing wood dock. Approximately 20,000 board feet of 4”X12” stringers and 12”X12” wood caps were also removed in this effort. The 550 wood pilings supporting the old dock were also removed to make way for 62 new 24” diameter steel pilings. Care had to be taken so as not to damage the nearby buildings during construction. Pile driving equipment had to be placed within inches of the store fronts to install the piling that would later support the 12 ton pre-cast concrete deck panels. Because one of the main streets in Ketchikan (Spruce Mill Street) passes over the dock, a significant portion of downtown Ketchikan had to be cordoned off during construction. Most of the construction was performed using a barge mounted crane that had to be repeatedly maneuvered between existing structures in and out of the project area because much of the work could only be performed during the high tide cycles.
As is always West’s practice, project quality was ensured by carefully monitoring construction processes and procedures and by maintaining an environment of open and cooperative communication with the client and the client’s on site representatives. The finished project provided the owner with 41,000 square feet of new usable dock surface. West performed 97% of the work with its own forces. Only electrical and under water work were subcontracted out. The contract amount increased by $206,000 as a result of a change order for additional under dock utility work.