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Knik receives Excellence in Construction Award

Tue, Jan 23, 2024

award post for KnikThe Knik team gathers in Anchorage in December 2023.

A little over a year ago, Typhoon Merbok transitioned into the Bering Sea hitting more than 1,300 miles of coastline and 35 remote communities. Knik Construction’s quick response earned it an Excellence in Construction Award from the Associated General Contractors of Alaska late last year. The category was fitting: "Meeting the Challenge of a Job" in transportation, marine, heavy and earthmoving.

When the typhoon hit, Knik had recently finished the Nome Airport Rehabilitation Project and was down to its last three crew members who stayed behind to winterize the camp and equipment.

The Department of Transportation made swift decisions as Knik called back its operators for an emergency response effort. "There was an immense amount of work to be completed to even be able to haul to the breach," says Troy Gray, Knik Business Development Manager and Construction Coordinator.

Equipment was moved past Cape Nome and Knik crews quickly began re-establishing roadway. "Within a week, miles of road had been constructed and in another three days, we had equipment across the 1,000 lineal foot breach. With as many as 20 haul trucks in line, five loaders, three bulldozers, and three track hoes, over 67,000 tons of road base and riprap was hauled making the Nome-Council Highway passable before winter set in," Troy explains.

Meanwhile, Knik paving crews were working long hours in downtown Nome removing debris and hauling material from the Knik pit for asphalt. In all, 1,871 tons of asphalt and over a mile of grading and debris were removed in short order. With winter barreling toward the west coast of Alaska, paving was completed as snow fell. Striping was completed on the last official day of the fall season.

"This was an unbelievable effort by all involved, DOT construction and maintenance crews and local subcontractors," says Knik President Dan Hall. "Knik excels at emergency response, and it was gratifying to be a part of this response project working side-by-side with our state partners and subcontractors."

The AGC award nomination states the Nome Emergency Storm repair was an "exceptional candidate." It reads: "In the face of Typhoon Merbok’s devastating aftermath, Knik’s Nome Emergency Storm Repairs team performed nothing short of a miracle. Scheduled to leave Nome, the crew pivoted instantly, assessing a catastrophic 30-mile road damage and a 1,000-foot sea-to-lagoon breach. Mobilizing within days, they collaborated with contractors and the community to defy looming winter odds over the Bering Sea. Utilizing drone technology and innovative construction techniques, they hauled 67,000 tons of material up to 20 miles, repairing roads, the breach, and heavily hit downtown Nome. With a flawless safety record and immense local impact, this project epitomizes excellence in construction."

Topics from this blog: Lynden Awards Disaster Relief Alaska Knik Construction Featured

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