The new Sunrise Mainline Toll Plaza on the Sawgrass Expressway west of Ft. Lauderdale represents a transformation of the aging Expressway to a “highway of tomorrow.” The $26 million design/build project offers the first open road tolling (ORT) in South Florida, using a double-span signature gantry for collection of tolls from high-speed vehicles.
The toll plaza utilizes approximately 11,000 sq. ft. of PAC-CLAD .032” corrugated aluminum panels. The 7/8” panels were finished in Silver Metallic. In addition, 5,400 sq. ft. of .125 plate aluminum was custom perforated and spray coated.
Miami-based MCM Corp. was the lead contractor and Orlando-based RS&H was the lead design firm and engineer of record. “The assignment from the Florida Turnpike Enterprise was to create a ‘showcase toll plaza’,” according to Jesse Forst, project manager for RS&H.
The Sawgrass Expressway has become a major commuter corridor with more than 90,000 vehicles per day. The toll plaza project included 1.33 miles of roadway widening north and south of the plaza and complete reconstruction of the approaches.
According to Forst, “The use of corrugated metal was part of the design/build criteria established by the Turnpike. We designed the project to have a contrasting look between the corrugated and the perforated material. The installation challenges involved detailing to make sure the two materials meshed together properly without creating maintenance or constructability problems. It’s a great project and a definite toll road showcase in south Florida.”
Allied Architectural Metals, Inc., Ft. Lauderdale, fabricated the custom perforated material as well as installed the corrugated panels and intricate trim details.