Woodstock Road Retaining Wall Emergency Replacement

In July 2016, intense thunderstorms in Woodstock, Maryland, dropped as much as 6 inches of rain in 3 hours, causing widespread flooding and the collapse of a 6-foot-high, 200-foot-long retaining wall along the east side of Woodstock Road. As a result, the Howard County Department of Public Works needed a fast and sustainable solution to keep the road safe and open to motorists.

EBA  provided design services that met the expedited construction requirement and addressed the considerable site constraints. To save both time and money, EBA designed a new precast modular block retaining wall system as a gravity wall replacement for the existing concrete retaining wall.

After completing demolition and excavation, the contractor erected the designed 200-foot modular wall in less than a week, reducing the construction duration by 4 to 5 weeks compared with the traditional cast-in-place method. The reduced construction time frame enabled a much shorter disruption to traffic patterns and bus routes during the school year. EBA’s construction phase services included on-site inspections, field engineering management, and materials testing.

Ultimately, Howard County residents and visitors benefited from EBA’s innovative—and rapidly developed—solution.

In February 2019, this project received an Honor Award in the American Council of Engineering Companies Maryland (ACEC/MD) Engineering Excellence Awards competition.

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