Meet the Construction Division
Juggling the logistics of multiple construction projects every summer takes the combined efforts of a committed group of individuals with eyes on the ground.
The Construction Division – a team of 18 people – takes ownership of roads, bridges, sewer, sidewalk, flood control and trail projects built by contractors. Their job is to help ensure that projects are built according to the design plan. While this might seem straightforward on paper, road work in the field often includes a myriad of complex considerations.
Construction inspectors assist contractors from start to finish and serve as a bridge between other departments. While contractors are responsible for the timeline and site management of the projects they’ve been awarded, construction inspectors provide City oversight and accountability for the project’s completion.
Every day, they visit multiple construction sites, oversee the efforts of the City’s contractors, monitor the production of the crews, and troubleshoot when things don’t go as planned.
For contractors, having a representative from the City assigned to the project means that problem-solvers are readily available. The team’s construction and civil engineering backgrounds – combined with field experience and a knowledge of the city –enables inspectors to advise on strategies that could save money and reduce impacts to the traveling public.
For residents, having an inspector “on the ground” ensures there is someone who checks on progress daily. Inspectors can serve as advocates and help ensure that crews are responsive and attentive to issues.
It’s not uncommon for the inspectors and contractors to work on solutions to help address specific situations. When residents on 42nd Street NE needed help accessing their driveways for medical reasons, the City’s construction inspector and the contractor worked to coordinate equipment removal and temporary driveway surfaces. Life happens in the summer, regardless of construction, and inspectors work tirelessly to try and lessen impacts during projects.
There is tremendous benefit to the public on having a division dedicated solely to the integrity of construction projects. When projects follow their design plans, it ensures the public is getting what they paid for – and makes for a smoother construction season.