Highway 13 Improvements in Manchester offer smooth ride to downtown


April 2019 to Present


$3.8 million

The highly anticipated Highway 13 road resurfacing project in Manchester, Iowa, went smoothly and swiftly thanks to a strong working relationship between the City, Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT), general contractor Pirc Tobin Construction and Fehr Graham.

Our team developed a plan to resurface Iowa 13 from North 13th Street east to Franklin Street and north along Franklin Street beyond the City limits to the Honey Creek Bridge. We provided construction engineering services, taking into consideration the project would go through the heart of town. To reduce disruptions, the nearly 3 miles of improvements were broken into eight stages.

The first stage included resurfacing with Hot Mix Asphalt and adding a 10-foot-wide paved shoulder on the west side of town to improve safety and reduce maintenance. Stages 2, 3 and 4 included installing 12-inch water main to replace a 4-inch water main to improve water flow and residual pressure. The final stages provided storm sewer updates, added intakes along the roadway to improve drainage and widened the road to account for the two-way left turn lane through a residential area to improve traffic flow. A traffic signal was reconstructed at a busy intersection, and three others were updated. Rapid flash beacons were added to the intersection at North Franklin and Union Street that serves as a direct route to a park and aquatic center to improve pedestrian safety. The project included several Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant sidewalk and ramp upgrades.

The schedule was purposefully adjusted to shut down the downtown main intersection in late spring into early summer when many businesses were already shuttered because of COVID-19. Local traffic adapted to the changes because of planned, well-marked local detours as sections of the road closed for the summer. Flaggers and pilot cars were part of the process during milling and paving.

By working closely with the City, we resolved small issues quickly to avoid affecting the project schedule and the public and to reduce the duration of the road closures. Residents and visitors now enjoy better water flow and pressure, safer pedestrian and driver intersections and a smooth ride to Manchester's bustling downtown.

» Scheduled and attended preconstruction meetings and weekly project update meetings with contractor, City and IowaDOT.
» Coordinated utilities.
» Tested and monitored materials.
» Provided construction administration.
» Documented project, including preaudit checklist, and confirmed measurement and payment of all bid items.