Project Update: Metropolitan Water District of Southern California Installation of Radial Gates at Seven Facilities

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McMillen Jacobs is the prime contractor for the replacement of radial gates at seven Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD) facilities located along the Colorado River Aqueduct (CRA) in the heart of the Mojave Desert. The CRA is one of the primary sources of drinking water for Southern California.  The gates provide dewatering for routine system maintenance and repairs and also serve as an emergency diversion.

In January 2020, we mobilized construction crews to start preparation for an MWD planned two-week shutdown in February to accomplish maintenance and improvements on the CRA system. During this shutdown period, we worked on the rehabilitation of the concrete platforms and installed temporary bulkheads in front of the existing radial gates to keep the water back after shutdown and allowed us to remove the existing gates.  Electrical work was also performed along with hazardous material abatement.

After the shutdown, we demolished six of the radial gates, and approximately 200 feet of the concrete Vidal Wasteway, hazardous material abatement, earthwork and concrete for the Vidal Wasteway improvements. From April to mid-June, our construction crews will work on the completion of concrete work on the Vidal Wasteway, underground electrical and miscellaneous concrete work will take us into the first week of June 2020, when MWD will plan another shutdown due to the extreme desert heat.

Work will resume in mid-September, leading up to the February 2021 shutdown, when we will install the new radial gates, along with the electrical work. During the 2021 shutdown, our work will consist of removing the temporary bulkheads, removing the existing and installing the new radial gate at the Eagle Mountain Sand Trap.

Following that two-week shutdown, we will start testing and training of the new radial gates and punch list work on the project, with the plan of completing all on-site work by the end of March 2021, approximately 2 ½ months ahead of schedule.

Flying the Bulkhead in at Eagle Mtn. Plant

Flying the existing Vidal Radial Gate after removal

Excavation of the Vidal Wasteway