JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Big I may be the big winner.
For coming in on time, under budget and with innovative management, the interchange of interstates 10 and 95 is a finalist for a People's Choice Award.
The contest is sponsored by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), AAA and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and there is a $10,000 prize for the winner.
The public submitted 40 nominees, and the groups chose the 10 finalists based on the three criteria listed above.
According to the Florida Department of Transportation, the Big I features 17 bridges and 21 ramps, and totals 25 lane miles. It is a three-level interchange, and the highest ramp is 60 feet above the ground.
About 175,000 vehicles travel through the interchange every day.
At $154 million, the project is the most expensive FDOT project ever in Northeast Florida, and the DOT reports that it finished in May 2011, six months ahead of schedule.
The Big I is considered, for the sake of the contest, a "medium project." Its nearest competition of similar size is in Michigan, where the "Fix on I-196" relied upon community input and partnerships to rebuild and rehabilitate 2.5 miles of highway near Grand Rapids.
The project was handled differently than the big I.
In Jacksonville, the six-year project was constructed around moving traffic.
In Grand Rapids, those involved decided to close the highway, allowing for the $40 million project to conclude last November, just over one year after it began.
Check out all ten finalists online, and cast your vote for your favorite.
The winner gets to choose to send the $10,000 prize to either a charity or an engineering scholarship fund.
First Coast News