Retaining wall Rocky Award winners announced

Charlevoix, Mich. — Redi-Rock International announced the winners of its annual Rocky Awards honoring the best Redi-Rock walls built in the categories of Commercial, Residential, Freestanding, Water Application, and the People’s Choice Award, which are chosen by the public in an online vote. More than 130 Redi-Rock manufacturers across North America, Europe and Asia competed for the awards, which were presented at the 2014 Redi-Rock Summit meeting in Traverse City in July.


Redi-Rock of Kentuckiana of Mt. Washington, Ky., was co-winner of the Commercial Wall of the Year for walls they built for The Parklands project in Lousiville, Ky. Due to the topography of the area, both gravity and reinforced Positive Connection (PC) System retaining walls were necessary for the various phases of project, which includes a 41-foot-tall PC System wall that is the tallest Redi-Rock PC wall in the world to date. “The high efficiency of the PC System really made it possible to design tiered walls with those loads at that height,” said design engineer Clint Hines, P.E. “It would be hard to make it work with anything else.”


Graymont of St Marc des Carrieres, Quebec is co-recipient of Commercial Wall of the Year for the Canadian National (CN) Railway project. The CN rail line had to be elevated over the Société de Transport de Montréal (STM) light commuter Metro line where they crossed. When CN Rail geotechnical engineers saw the Redi-Rock PC System at the Transportation Research Board (TRB) meeting in early 2011, they began incorporating Redi-Rock PC walls from local manufacturer Graymont Materials into the design. “The PC System is the only block with this type of connection which allowed it to handle the loads. When you have massive loads so near the block facing, it’s hard to make a wall that will work. The walls are very high and the load is very close, but the civil engineering of this block made it a good fit,” explained David Chartier, junior engineer with V. Fournier & Associés. Trains made their first run on the line in late 2013, and the project has been performing exactly as engineered.


CPM Group of Somerset, Great Britain was honored with Water Application Wall of the Year for the Limestone harbor sea wall they built as part of the Foryd Harbor Enhancement Project in Rhyl, North Wales along the Irish Sea coast. The goal of the project was to deepen the river channel, enlarge the marina, and improve the park area along the river. When a massive storm battered the United Kingdom in January, causing a 60-year-high tidal surge, the Redi-Rock PC System wall performed exactly as engineered while many other structures in the area suffered extensive damage. Impressed with how the Redi-Rock wall performed during the storm, The city is now replacing an additional 1 km of walls using Redi-Rock.


DuraCast based in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia was awarded Residential Wall of the Year for their work on a shoreline wall built to save a family’s lakeside home from strong storms and rising water levels. It’s hard to imagine dealing with waves lapping at your home’s door — but that’s exactly the Fisher family found themselves in in 2012. When a major storm destroyed the hand-built rock wall that had been in place along the shoreline of the property for many years, George Searle of Searle Environmental Services Limited chose Redi-Rock to replace the failed wall. “Our firm had great results using Redi-Rock at another shorefront property on the same lake a few years previous, so we had no hesitation in designing a protection system for the Fishers using Redi-Rock,” Searle said. The project included 350 Redi-Rock blocks equaling approximately 2000 square feet, plus 72 Redi-Rock caps.


Redi-Rock of Central Maine based in Sangerville, Maine, received the Rock Award for Freestanding Wall of the Year for the walls they provided at the Maine General Hospital Alfond Center for Health. Standing at the main entrance of the hospital, the Ledgestone texture freestanding wall is the most visible wall on the property, creating a backdrop for the hospital’s entrance sign. “The wall ‘hides’ a detention basin from people driving up to the hospital and at the same time creates a nice entryway,” Jeff Benway, P.E., of SFC Engineering explained. Due to a very tight construction schedule, Redi-Rock of Central Maine coordinated with nearby Redi-Rock Walls of New England to meet the project’s schedule.


Jensen Precast of Sparks, Nev., was awarded the People’s Choice Rocky Award for their stunning Redi-Rock gravity wall and columns built as part of a new fire station project in Summerlin, Nev. The Palm Valley Golf Course in Summerlin donated land along its 9th tee to make the project a reality, and the City of Las Vegas agreed to operate the station. The Summerlin architectural committee insisted all retaining wall and columns at the fire station match the new tee box. They also wanted the blocks to match the look of the stone work on the new building. Jensen Precast accomplished this by supplying Ledgestone texture Redi-Rock blocks in a custom color that coordinated beautifully. “I believe it’s the best asset we have in our community,” said David Steinman, former Las Vegas city councilman and treasurer for the Summerlin Community Association Inc. Board of Directors.


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