Project Description

The first Inverted T-WALL project, Task 5 Kelso to Martins Bluff, was completed in early 2017. Over 64,000 SF of standard and Inverted T-WALL were used to support the new  track.

Task 5 was constructed as part of the BNSF/WS DOT third track initiative between Kelso and Longview Junction. Over 3.7 miles of third mainline track were added, separating freight and passenger rail traffic and relieving choke points. T-WALL was utilized on the Task 4, 5, and 6 portions of the project.

Existing tracks remained open during construction as Inverted T-WALL significantly reduced encroachment within the permissible excavation zone requiring shoring for railroad surcharge loading. Because both Inverted and standard T-WALL can be constructed within their own footprint, BNSF was able to build the additional third track within the existing tight right-of-way – an area flanked by active tracks and wetlands. The Neel Company considers all aspects of a project when engineering T-WALL, and for this project overcame site specific geotechnical challenges and achieved a cost-effective solution.

An Award-Winning Project
For the third year running a project that included the T-WALL Retaining Wall System in its design has received the prestigious W.W. Hay Award. AREMA selects the winning project based on innovation, safety, and project reliability.

The 2017 W.W. Hay Award was presented to BNSF and WSDOT for the Improvements for Passenger Rail Service and Reliability on BNSF Railway in Washington State project—a massive seven-year project that brought improvements to the line between Vancouver, WA and the Canadian border. The third track initiative between Kelso, Martin’s Bluff, and Longview Junction—described above—was a significant piece of the project.

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