Hawaii is known for its warm tropical climate, abundance of beaches and vast oceanic views. But that isolation from the rest of the United States comes at a cost – a need to import large amounts of consumer goods.
The state’s commercial harbor system is crucial to providing goods to people who live and visit the islands since nearly 80% of consumer goods are imported and 98% of those come through the harbors.
With more cargo being shipped to the islands and an aging infrastructure that was failing to hold up to the increased demands, the state has begun a modernization plan – and precast concrete is at the center of the project.
The Kapalama Container Terminal project is the largest capital improvement project in the history of Hawaii’s harbor system and will add an 84-acre container yard as well as 1,800 linear feet of new berthing space.
Jensen Precast’s plant in Kapolei, Hawaii, produced more than 150 box culvert segments that are designed for the demands of the improved harbor.
“The box culvert required special loading design to accommodate cranes and equipment to be used at the port,” said Project Manager Jorelle Flint, of Jensen Precast’s Honolulu Branch. “The job-specific mix design required 25% fly ash. All sections of box culvert also included epoxy coated rebar mats, and all products are coated with an exterior waterproofing.”
Flint said there were some production challenges since many of the pieces were custom.
“There was much form modification to increase wall thicknesses as well as thicker base and top sections,” Flint noted. “The site is near the ocean so dewatering prior to install was a big obstacle.”
Precast was chosen for the project because of its speed of installation and durability. Flint said they were able to set nearly 400 feet of precast products per day when they got up and running. Jensen also provided manholes and a variety of other utility products for the expansion.
All-in-all, the project, which is scheduled for completion next year, has been a success.
“Whenever we provide quality service with quality product and our customer is happy, we can be happy with our team’s efforts,” Flint said. “This was a complete team effort.”