Gresham Smith Receives Four National Awards from the American Council of Engineering Companies

Firm’s Work on Innovative Broadway Bridge Replacement Given National Honor Award

Gresham Smith is excited to announce that the firm has won four awards from the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) 2024 National Engineering Excellence Awards (EEA) competition that was held on May 15 in Washington, D.C.

The firm’s work on the Broadway Viaduct Bridge Replacement in Nashville, Tennessee, was named as one of just 16 Honor Award winners. The bridge replacement was delivered using the construction manager/general contractor (CM/GC) model, where the owner (Tennessee Department of Transportation), designer (Gresham Smith) and contractor (Kiewit) formed a partnership to mitigate risk, meet the project schedule and improve constructability.

Three other projects received National Recognition Awards, including our work to:

“The national ACEC awards is the pinnacle awards program for the engineering industry, and we’re honored to bring home four more wins for our clients,” said Gresham Smith CEO and Board Chair Rodney Chester. “I’m especially proud of the range of work we’ve been recognized for this year. With each project, we delivered innovative solutions for our clients that will improve the local communities that we call home.”

The national ACEC EEA competition showcases the innovation, technical expertise and value that engineering firms provide their clients. The Broadway Viaduct Bridge Replacement, Move Metairie Tracking Forward, MPATH: Empathic Insights and Town Branch Commons were eligible for national awards after winning state-level awards from the ACEC Tennessee, Louisiana and Kentucky EEA programs.

About the Award-Winning Projects

Broadway Viaduct Bridge Replacement

The Broadway Viaduct bridge, which spans five active railroad lines and a greenway, is a crucial artery for the City of Nashville, carrying not only an average of 26,000 vehicles daily but also critical communication infrastructure. A complex endeavor with multiple stakeholders, the bridge replacement was delivered under the construction manager/general contractor method, where the owner, designer and contractor form a partnership to mitigate risk, improve the schedule, streamline design and better adhere to the budget. The team used accelerated bridge construction techniques that resulted in the replacement of the bridge superstructure during an 8-week full closure of the bridge.

Move Metairie Tracking Forward

In Metairie, Louisiana, residents have long grappled with train traffic and delays at the Norfolk Southern railroad crossing on Metairie Road. In response, Gresham Smith, in collaboration with Jefferson Parish Council Member Jennifer Van Vrancken, launched ‘Move Metairie Tracking Forward’. This innovative, patented technology and free app provides real-time train traffic information. Using installed detectors and cameras, the system triangulates a train’s path, speed, direction, and anticipated crossing blockage times. The data is then shared with the public via the app, enabling motorists to choose the most efficient routes and avoid delays, thereby enhancing their quality of life.

MPATH: Empathic Insights

Using expertise and a new technology from Gresham Smith, the Christina Lee Brown Envirome Institute at the University of Louisville deployed MPATH to conduct a stress pilot across the urban core of Louisville in July 2023. The results of the study begin to help us understand how environmental and contextual related issues influence how people experience places. The study collected over 200,000 stress data points and correlated them to environmental sensor data focused on urban heat island effect, lighting, crime data, and crash data. Through this data collection, researchers were able to quantify what engineers and architects have suggested for years, that small incremental improvements like public art, outdoor seating, etc., have a measurable impact on how people experience a place. While this project was only one study in one city, the implications from the findings of the survey could have far-reaching impacts across the engineering industry.

Town Branch Commons

Town Branch Commons is a 1.5-mile multimodal transportation and linear park system in downtown Lexington, Kentucky. The project serves as the centerpiece of the city-wide park system, linking the city’s urban core with the Bluegrass countryside. Gresham Smith’s design transformed the city’s major roadways into Complete Streets, prioritizing the needs of all users by providing safe, accessible transportation options for all users. Through this project, the team implemented transformative improvements to bicycle, pedestrian, transit, and vehicular systems, all while providing a world-class public infrastructure system that connects urban, suburban, and rural parts of the city.

By fully integrating the use of the roadways, this project has energized the heart of downtown and its economy. This revitalization effort has created a vibrant and welcoming atmosphere that draws visitors from near and far, helping to establish Lexington as a model for smart urban planning and community-driven development.

The Broadway Viaduct Bridge Replacement team.
The Move Metairie Tracking Forward team.
The MPATH: Empathic Insights team.
The Town Branch Commons team.