J10 Soil Boring Access Project — Western Massachusetts

April–June 2018

Riggs Distler’s Environmental Matting Division was contracted to develop an access road across a difficult and inundated landscape to allow a test boring company to travel to work sites easily and safely. The project involved:

  • Building 11 road spans to access two structures and test boring sites
  • Timber matting
  • Stone installation
  • Environmental controls and protections
  • Coordination with the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR)

Challenges Overcome

Our team faced significant challenges while planning and building the road, including difficult terrain, steep embankments, a ledge, snow cover in the winter, and meltwater in the spring. Every inch of the access road was built in a wetland or over extremely muddy uplands.
In addition to the tough conditions, the client needed the road completed as soon as possible in order to perform structural assessments in advance of planned refurbishment in the coming months. The project area was also home to several rare and protected species, requiring environmental and construction controls, and portions of the road crossed lands managed by the Massachusetts DCR, requiring careful public agency coordination.

Results Delivered

Thanks to our General Foreman’s extensive experience, Riggs Distler was able to make short work of some of the worst road-building conditions our team has ever encountered. We used off-road equipment, excavators, large articulating dumps, and forwarders to haul in and install approximately 4,800 tons of material to make the steep, muddy conditions accessible. To navigate the ledge, our team hammered our passes to allow the road to continue.

Ultimately, Riggs Distler’s team was able to beat the accelerated project schedule, completing the road and securing access to the client’s infrastructure in time for them to perform assessments before the scheduled upgrades, all while protecting the surrounding environment. A large portion of the access road was made permanent, allowing access for the client to perform future maintenance and repairs on the line whenever necessary.