Williams Construction Services Performs Biggest Lift of Transform I-66 Project

WATCH: Williams Construction Services and Williams Steel Erection Co., Inc.’s Rigging Division work together to place a 250 ton box girder above I-66 East.

On April 20th, 2022, the team at Williams Construction Services and Williams Steel Erection Co., Inc. performed the largest girder lift of the Transform 66 Outside the Beltway Project to date. Using three cranes and a Goldhofer SPMT Trailer, the 250 ton girder was moved into the highway and lifted into position during a five-hour full closure of I-66 East at the Route 28 interchange.

The carefully planned and coordinated operation presented many unique challenges, first and foremost the size of the girder. At 13 feet tall and 139 feet long, it is the tallest box girder of the project and the second longest. Because three cranes were required for the pick, keeping it level through constant communication between the operators was critical. The final location of the girder was also directly under a power line, which had to be shut down for the lift.

After the box girder was assembled next to the highway over the course of weeks, one end of the girder was placed on Williams Steel Erection Co., Inc.’s Goldhofer heavy haul trailer, while the other was lifted by a Link-Belt 200 ton crawler crane so the trailer could rotate it into the closed roadway. Once in position, the 200 ton was joined by a Link-Belt 300 ton truck crane and Liebherr 300 ton hydraulic crane. Working together, the three Williams Construction Services cranes lifted the girder into position above the highway to be secured by erector Webber before the highway reopened.

“Transform 66 Outside the Beltway” is a design-build project with VDOT, I-66 Express Mobility Partners, and general contractor FAM Construction. Construction began in 2017 to add express lanes to a 22.5-mile stretch of I-66 from I-495 in Falls Church to Route 29 in Gainesville. The project is scheduled to be completed in 2022.