Heavy Civil

NM 599 / County Road 62 Interchange

NM 599 Overpass

Completed Overpass Bridge over NM 599

Owner/Engineer: NMDOT
Location of Project: Santa Fe County, NM
Final Contract Amount: $7,080,995
Completion Date: July 2013
Project Awards Received:

  •  2013 NMDOT District Five Pavement Smoothness Quality Award
  •  2013 American Concrete Institute New Mexico Chapter Excellence in Concrete Award

This project involved construction of an overpass bridge over NM 599 on the west side of Santa Fe. Roundabouts were constructed on each side of NM 599 which allowed reduced bridge width on the overpass and also eliminated potentially hazardous stop conditions. The intersection also accommodates increasing pedestrian and bicycle traffic from the surrounding area.

The bridge incorporated original site-specific artwork by two local area artists:  Leanna Aragon from the Tesuque Pueblo and Leo Romero a 5th generation Agua Fria Village native.  Each artist was assigned one side of the bridge and was asked to create themes that expressed their community’s experience of living in this place.

Aragon’s work includes avanyu, the water serpent sacred to Tewa peoples, and the turkey pindi that was raised in the area. Romero’s work references the carretas (carts) which brought firewood from the nearby Caja del Rio and the springs (ojitos) that supplied travelers with refreshment in the early days of the Camino Real.

The artwork was produced by fabricating large precast concrete facing panels, providing a durable “canvas” that allows the design to stand the test of time. The Reinforced Earth Co. collaborated with the artists to incorporate the artwork into the design plans of the retaining walls. The company’s precast division then precisely transferred the artwork onto the facing panels to achieve the desired 3-D relief and surface textures. Finishing colors were added on the job site.

Lead and Coal Avenues Improvements

After: Coal Avenue at Ash Street

After: Coal Avenue at Ash Street

Owner: City of Albuquerque
Engineer: Wilson & Company
Location of Project: Albuquerque, NM
Final Contract Amount: $26,896,887
Completion Date: May 2012

Awards Received:
Three awards from the Associated General Contractors-New Mexico Building Branch (AGC-NM) Best Buildings 2013

  • Municipal and Utilities
  • ACE Leadership High School Students Award
  • Grand Prize of Show

Lead and Coal Avenues serve as main arterials connecting downtown Albuquerque to its east side. The project involved over five and a half miles of construction through the heavily traveled residential area. In addition to resident and business access, mail, bus service, garbage pick-up and other services had to be maintained throughout the project, and heavy pedestrian traffic was a concern with the project’s proximity to CNM and UNM.

The existing three-lane streets that encouraged speeding and weaving were replaced with two-lane streets that included traffic-calming features and encouraged multi-modal transportation. The project made the entire corridor ADA accessible with the installation of over 500 wheelchair ramps. In addition, designated transit stops with shaded structures were installed, bike lanes were added throughout the length of the project, and the existing 3’ sidewalks were widened to a minimum of 6’ wide. Over 18,000 cubic yards of concrete were placed within the project.

The inadequate storm drain system and aging infrastructure were updated, including installation of up to 66” diameter storm drain that had to be placed up to 20’ deep in some sections. The project also included signalization and roadway lighting; fiber optic cable, splicing and terminating; CCTV installation; traffic count station installation; signing and striping; garden walls, retaining walls and landscaping. The 18-month project was completed on time and under the City’s budget.


Sunport General Aviation Apron Reconstruction

Photo of Sunport General Aviation Apron

Aerial View of Completed Project

Owner: City of Albuquerque Aviation Department
Engineer: Molzen-Corbin & Associates
Location of Project: Albuquerque, NM
Contract Amount: $10,435,535
Completion Date: September 2012

This project involved upgrading the General Aviation apron by removing 119,000 square yards of existing asphalt and concrete apron pavement and replacing it with Portland Cement Concrete Pavement (PCCP). The PCCP thickness varied from 10.5” to 12” and was placed on 4” of asphalt with 20” of subgrade prep. The project also included replacement of all lighting and striping within the apron and installation of 270 aircraft tie down anchors with associated cables.

Additional work included rebuilding/altering ten existing storm drain drop inlets and manholes.  Two new gate valve controlled storm drain systems were installed to accommodate new fuel truck storage areas.

Significant coordination was necessary to accommodate traffic to and from the various tenants of the General Aviation apron.  Phasing was modified throughout the project that provided efficient access for the tenants while also providing more efficient work areas for the paving.

Exit 102 Acomita I-40 Interchange at MP 102.000

New Mexico Department of Transportation (Owner)
Contract Amount: $3,851,057 (AUI Subcontracted portion)

This project is one of the first bridge/interchange projects that utilized roundabouts at the on and off ramps.  The newly constructed bridge over I-40 was built approximately 1000’ west of the existing interchange.  The two-span, 200’ long twin bridges contained many aesthetic features from custom formliners to custom-stained concrete.  Traffic was never interrupted during the construction of the new bridge or during the widening of the existing bridges.   This was a very challenging portion of the project as the existing interchange bridges had to be partially demolished and widened without disrupting traffic on either I-40 or Old NM 124 running underneath the bridge.  AUI devised a method utilizing steel beams and heavy duty shoring to accommodate this unique challenge.  AUI was a subcontractor to Kirkland Construction who was responsible for the paving and earthwork on the project.  AUI constructed all of the concrete flat work on the project along with all concrete structures on the project including but not limited to curb and gutter, sidewalk, drop inlets, PCCP, colored/ patterned median paving, bridges, concrete box culverts and concrete slope blankets.

A major challenge on the project was the location.  The Acomita area is well known for its harsh winters.  The majority of this project was constructed during the winter months.  AUI fought through numerous snow storms and many days where the wind chill factor brought temperatures down into the single digits; however, the project progressed and was never suspended due to weather.  AUI made provisions to accommodate cold weather concrete to the satisfaction of the NMDOT.  This project was been a great success and a fine example of collaboration between the contractors, the NMDOT and the Pueblo of Acoma.

I-40, San Mateo to Pennsylvania (Award Winning Project)

New Mexico Department of Transportation
Project Location: Bernalillo County, NM
Contract Total Value:  $21,653,150.00

This reconstruction project involved the widening and improvements of I-40 through Albuquerque.  The limits of the project, both eastbound and westbound, were I-40 from just east of the San Mateo Boulevard interchange to just west of the Boulevard interchange.  Accommodating interstate traffic was a challenge with weekday traffic flows that exceeded 155,000 vehicles per day through the construction zone.  A large flood channel exists between the eastbound and westbound lanes which eliminated the ability to shift traffic into oncoming lanes.

A large quantity of retaining walls and sound walls were constructed on the project.  AUI set up its own certified precast yard to supply the 83,000 SF of precast walls.  The walls required drilled shafts for foundations and pilasters to support and connect the walls.   Over 8,200 VF of drilling was required for the 120 drilled shafts, 48” in diameter and 22’ deep.  Precast pilasters were bolted on each of the drilled shafts for sound walls to support the wall panels above the surface.  Over 500 wall panels were placed, typically in 10’ sections.

Retaining walls were built for support of the properties involved.  The foundations for the retaining walls consisted of 36”drilled caissons with a 14” x 89# steel H-pile placed (not driven) inside to enhance the integrity of the wall support system.   AUI installed approximately 30,000 SF of sheet piling to facilitate this work.

The paving operations consisted of 3600 SY or 1350 CY of Portland-Cement Concrete Pavement and 137,500 SY or 68,000 tons of plant mix bituminous pavement.  Over 18,500 LF of 42” cast-in-place concrete barrier wall was constructed.  Drainage improvements were included in the project consisting of 5,200 LF of 24”and 36” storm drainage pipe, and 35 drop-inlet structures.

Unser Boulevard Improvements, Sage to Central

City of Albuquerque
Location of Project: Albuquerque, NM
Contract Amount: $4,055,827.00

AUI contracted with the City of Albuquerque for the construction of this urban roadway project.  Primarily the original scope of work called for the modification of the existing two-lane roadway to a four-lane roadway.  However early on, the City realized a design reconfiguration was necessary to accommodate the Unser Crossing Development retail center.
The change included additional traffic lanes and intersection geometry on Unser Boulevard from Town Road to San Ygnacio and from Bridge Boulevard to Central Avenue.  This redesign and added scope accounted for an increase in contract amount and duration. The unique technical challenges presented by this project were the extensive use of vacuum excavation for exploration of subsurface conditions of proposed waterline path and for successful location and protection of existing utilities and the boring of a 24” by 80’ steel casing across Unser Boulevard at Central. AUI worked diligently to assure pedestrian and vehicular traffic concerns for congested highly developed downtown area were mitigated while coordinating with other projects and residents of surrounding community. AUI met the owner-approved contract completion date.

Camino De La Placita Phase II, TT91-119, BID NO. 02-03-10; MAP-6005(900)00 CN 9582

Town of Taos
Location:  Taos, NM
Contract Price:  $1,634,147.64

The jobsite was located on Camino de la Placita, which is a main thoroughfare bypass for the Plaza area and is a combination arterial/residential collector street. AUI’s contracted scope of work included reconstruction of Camino de la Placita to include new roadway (subgrade prep, base course, pavement fabric, asphalt pavement, curb and gutter, sidewalk, handicapped ramps, drive pads), installation of new water, sewer, and storm sewer lines, manholes, drainage structures, fencing, removal and replacement of CMU walls, signalization, and traffic control.
The biggest challenge AUI faced while constructing this project was impact planning in order to minimize the effect on tourist-based businesses.  The AUI project team worked closely with the Town of Taos project representatives and the owners of businesses affected by the construction activity to schedule roadway, curbside parking, and sidewalk impacts so that business access was maintained for local and tourist traffic.
By being reasonable, cooperative, and working well with the owner’s representatives, AUI met the Town of Taos’s expectations on this project. AUI responded to the project site restrictions and existing site conditions resulting in a project completed within the time expected by the owner.

I-10, Las Cruces to Texas State Line

New Mexico Department of Transportation (Owner)
Location of Project: Dona Ana County, NM
Contract Amount: $5,092,543.51 (AUI Subcontracted portion)

AUI was subcontracted by Mountain States Constructors, Inc. to assist in the new construction and rehabilitation of I-10 from Las Cruces to the Texas state line. The overall project scope involved the lane expansion of I-10 northbound and southbound lanes from two to four lanes. AUI’s portion of this project included the construction of a 4,800LF permanent concrete wall barrier, a new Gateway Sign for visitors entering the state of New Mexico, and construction of a 42,000SF precast concrete sound wall held in place by drilled piers. Scheduling conflicts were kept to a minimum as the project progressed smoothly with AUI placing over 13,000LF of culvert pipe extensions in addition to approximately 20 drop inlets of various sizes, to provide the necessary drainage for the lane expansion of I-10. The installation of culvert pipe and box culvert extensions; cleaning and or filling existing culvert pipe and box culverts; in addition to preparing the area for Mountain States paving portion by backfill and compaction over these installations, had to be done in an efficient and timely manner to assure that all contractors and subcontractors involved could stay on schedule.
AUI’s success on this project was dependent upon positive working relationships with both NMDOT and the prime contractor, Mountain States Constructors, Inc. The quality of the final project was enhanced by AUI’s commitment to the safety of their employees as there were no lost time accidents on the project and in large part to the dedication of our employees who take great pride in their work. Every effort was made to work together on this project and share resources when necessary; while efficient productivity allowed the project to stay on schedule and on budget.

Paseo Del Volcan (Northern Section) Stage II, IRIS to US 550

City of Rio Rancho
Location of Project: Rio Rancho, NM
Contract Amount: $8,796,959 (AUI Inc.’s subcontract amount)

The project called for a 3.1 mile extension of Paseo del Volcan from Iris Road to US 550 consisting of the addition of a two-lane roadway, drainage crossings, roadway intersections with traffic signals, three bridges, and the raising
of Enchanted Hills Boulevard.  Once again AUI was a subcontractor to Mountain States Constructors, Inc., the prime contractor for this City of Rio Rancho project. Under AUI’s $8.7 million subcontract, AUI constructed four bridges (two single-span and two double-span), a seven-barrel box culvert , a two-barrel box culvert , approx. 10,000 SF of soil nail walls , 3,000 SF of pre-cast sound walls , approx. 50,000 SF of MSE wall, and 2,000 LF of concrete barrier wall. AUI also placed over 2,500 LF of RCP storm drain ranging from 72” to 96” in diameter, in addition to 2,000 LF of 12” sanitary sewer and approximately 800 LF of 16” waterline.

This American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) funded project began construction in August 2009 and was scheduled for completion by February 2011; however, AUI successfully completed its construction activities by the end of 2010.

Catwalk Trail Reconstruction Design-Build

Panoramic View of Catwalk Structure

Project awards received

Owner: Federal Highway Administration – Central Federal Lands Division/U.S. Forest Service
Engineer: Bohannan Huston, Inc.
Location of Project: Gila National Forest, near Glenwood, NM
Final Contract Amount: $4,617,780
Completion Date: May 2016

Project Scope (included Design and Construction):

  • 700 feet of suspended catwalk
  • Three steel pedestrian bridges
  • Restoration of the primitive and accessible trails leading to the structures
  • Removal and disposal of creek obstructions and existing flood-damaged structures
  • Slope protection for erosion control and prevention of falling rocks
  • Total rehabilitation and expansion of the parking lot that provides access to the trail
  • Preservation of the existing historical and archeological elements

Project Challenges:

  • Remote location in an environmentally sensitive area
  • Only nine months to complete design and construction
  • Irregular canyon walls required custom fabrication for every piece of steel and a different bearing for every support


  • 1933: Original Catwalk Trail is built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC)
  • 1978: Catwalk Trail is designated a National Recreation Trail
  • 2012: The lightning-sparked Whitewater/Baldy Fire burns over 290,000 acres in the Trail’s proximity
  • 2013: A catastrophic rain cascades down the burn scar, flooding Whitewater Canyon, and destroying the historic Catwalk
  • 2015: Design and construction begin to restore the historic Trail on August 24th
  • 2016: Catwalk Trail Recreation Area is re-opened to the public on May 28th



















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Project News

AUI Breaks Ground on Largest Project in Company History

Rio Bravo Groundbreaking

July 31, 2017–

The NMDOT held a groundbreaking ceremony for the I-25/Rio Bravo Interchange Project today, and construction is scheduled to begin on August 8th.

The $50M project is the largest in AUI’s 36-year history.
Read more…

Employee News

Deluca Presented with Albuquerque Good Samaritan Award

Photo of Mayor Richard Berry presenting Good Samaritan Award to Anthony Deluca.

September 1, 2017–

Today, Mayor Richard J. Berry recognized Anthony Deluca as this week’s Good Samaritan for helping a man who was blind cross a busy intersection. Deluca is an employee of AUI, Inc., a contractor for the Albuquerque Rapid Transit (ART) project. Read more…