A Successful Approach: Union Station Westward Expansion Wins ACEC Award
A Successful Approach: Union Station Westward Expansion Wins ACEC Award
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A Successful Approach: Union Station Westward Expansion Wins ACEC Award
02/19/2018 2 minute read

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KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Feb. 19, 2018) — A $7.8 million project that used an innovative contracting approach to make the front yard of “Kansas City’s home” even more welcoming and easier for visitors to access has been recognized among the top engineering projects in Missouri during the past year.

The Union Station of Kansas City Westward Expansion Project, a project designed and built by Burns & McDonnell, won a Grand Award in the Special Projects category from the Missouri chapter of the American Council of Engineering Companies. The chapter presented its Engineering Excellence Awards earlier this month.

The expansion project is the largest construction project undertaken at Union Station since 1999, when a $250 million renovation turned the Beaux Arts structure into a popular cultural, educational and entertainment venue. The expansion addressed traffic concerns, improved parking and pedestrian access, added outdoor event space and enhanced the overall look and feel of spaces surrounding the 100-plus-year-old landmark.

ACEC judges lauded Burns & McDonnell for its engineering-procurement-construction (EPC) approach, which delivered:

  • The Carriage Pavilion Bridge, which connects the main building and an adjacent parking garage, allowing visitors to park and walk into the Grand Hall without using stairs, escalators or elevators.
  • Haverty Family Yards, which provides more than 90,000 square feet north of the bridge to accommodate more than 5,000 people for concerts, festivals and other large outdoor events.
  • An east-side transportation plaza, including renovation of ATA bus and Kansas City Streetcar stations.
  • Other changes, including interior upgrades for ticketing and conference/event space, plus exterior enhancements for building frontage, site access and public gathering spaces.
Using EPC, Union Station assigned Burns & McDonnell responsibility for overall project management, budget and schedule control, from conception, design and procurement to construction management and final handover. The team pulled together what had been four separate scopes of work — each with an independent funding stream — into a single project, one whose details could be seamlessly adjusted as financing, design needs and functional desires changed. Having designers and builders on the same team enabled maximum flexibility without increasing costs or sacrificing schedule.

“As the design-build contractor, Burns & McDonnell played a major role in this project’s success, displaying the nimbleness needed to allow for additions and changes as we secured additional donor funding along the way,” says George Guastello, president and CEO of Union Station. “In the end, they did more than meet our expectations for schedules, costs and results. The firm succeeded in both preserving and evolving our historic property for the 21st Century, which was a very delicate and deliberate balance. They returned our beloved Union Station to its roots as a regional transportation hub.”

The Carriage Pavilion Bridge also won a 2018 Design Award from the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute.

“This project had layers of complexity and required us to implement multiple site improvements to address long-standing accessibility and traffic flow issues, as well as create compatible, public-facing aesthetics for a Beaux Arts building more than 100 years old and its adjacent modern parking garage,” says Joel Jacobsen, Burns & McDonnell architectural director. “We were proud to help meet the goals of Union Station, simplify the process through an integrated design-build approach and work on one of Kansas City’s most iconic structures.”

Other Burns & McDonnell projects winning Engineering Excellence Awards this year from ACEC chapters: West Blue River Interceptor (Honor Award, Missouri), Big Canyon Environmental Restoration Project (Honor Award, California), DISA Global Operations Headquarters (Special Achievement Award, Illinois), Integration of RCRA Corrective Action with Facility Demolition for Loveland Products (Merit Award, Nebraska), and Stillwater Energy Center Reciprocating Engine Project (Honor Award, Oklahoma).

About Burns & McDonnell

Burns & McDonnell is a family of companies made up of more than 6,000 engineers, architects, construction professionals, scientists, consultants and entrepreneurs with offices across the country and throughout the world. We strive to create amazing success for our clients and amazing careers for our employee-owners. Burns & McDonnell is 100 percent employee-owned and is proud to be on Fortune’s 2018 list of 100 Best Companies to Work For.

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