Union workers bring 95 Express Lanes project in ahead of schedule, on budget

road-work-headerWith the Interstate 95 Express Lanes in Virginia set to open on Dec. 14, the project is being held up as a model public/private infrastructure project built with a unionized workforce.

“This $1.5 billion dollar project came in ahead of schedule, on budget and with zero lost-time accidents out of 3.8 million man hours,” said Dennis Martire, Vice President and Mid-Atlantic Regional Manager of the Laborer’s International Union of North America (LiUNA!). “That has everything to do with the highly skilled and well-trained LiUNA! members who worked on this project.”

The project created 29 miles of toll roads along I-95 in Virginia, nine new bridges, and four new flyovers in a span of 29 months.

At a Dec. 10 ceremonial opening of the I-95 express lanes, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe characterized the project as “an investment in Virginia’s economy,” and praised the work of LiUNA! members in helping to complete it early and on-budget. “Our men and women, who we’ve all seen out here working, really deserve a special round of applause.”

Every LiUNA! member who worked on the project received training in first aid and CPR, and completed a 10-hour “OSHA-10” safety training course. The OSHA recordable incident rate for the project was .41 — substantially below the national average of 3.6, making it one of the safest large infrastructure construction projects in the United States.

The express lanes were also built under a voluntary Project Labor Agreement (PLA) between LiUNA! and the joint venture of Fluor-Lane.

“The PLA ensured that this project went smoothly and that this large investment of public money supported good jobs in our communities,” said Martire. “This project underscores that PLAs are a win-win-win—they benefit workers, they benefit the employer, and they benefit taxpayers.”


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