SSC Boring Completes Tucson Electric Power Project on Tight Deadline

When an underground construction company is faced with challenging ground conditions, a project’s successful completion comes down to innovation, determination and patience. Even when faced with a tight deadline, a contractor’s ability to stay objective and think creatively is key to the project’s success.

Such was the case with one of Specialized Service Company’s more challenging contracts, the recent horizontal auger boring performed for the Tucson Electric Power project. The power system required upgrades to accommodate the growing Tucson area, and SSC was chosen to provide essential trenchless technology services.

GV Trenchless Article 2Project Challenges

  • SSC was required to perform 720 feet of boring under Interstate 19
  • TEP planned for 24-inch installations, a logistical concern for successful boring of such a long distance; the design was later modified for a 42” casing installation
  • TEP wanted the job done quickly; this ruled out hand tunneling  as well
  • Auger boring technology was agreed upon as the best option; installation and casing adjustments were made and SSC set out to work
  • Due to the project’s complexity, length and duration, SSC owner Abe Veidmark developed a strategic pit and layout design to stay ahead of material and spoils issues
  • The  ground was hard and required a change in the type of bit used

Tackling Obstacles

  • A bit broke during work in January; crews quickly fixed it and got back on track after the minor setback
  • Work continued, but strain on theboring equipment led to Veidmark’s decision to use the slick lines that were installed to pump polymer
  • At 517 feet, an auger shaft snapped; this happened again at 530 feet and 580 feet
  • Each time, the auger was pulled out and the broken piece was removed
  • This resulted in days-long delays and the decision to replace all 4-inch hex augers with 5-inch in order to alleviate the issue
  • By March, when the bore was at 640’ the bore machine was at its limit and the auger broke again; SSC informed the owner that either hand tunneling or an open-cut was necessary
  • Due to time constraints, the owner chose and got approval from ADOT to open cut the remaining 80’
  • In just three days, SSC dug an open-cut trench, installed the full 720 feet of casing and completed the crossing

Final Phase

  • The conduit bundles of 14-6” PVC conduits were built
  • The conduit was jacked into place inside of the 42” casing
  • The annular space around the conduits required grouting. Knowing the heat that  grouting this length of casing would create, Veidmark created plans to plumb an ingenious cooling system that spared more delays and finished the project on a strong and successful note

To learn more about SSC Boring’s innovative auger boring capabilities, tunneling services, or small boring units for AZ projects, call 602-997-6164 to speak with a trenchless technology expert, or Contact Us Online.

What Our Clients Say:

  • “Just wanted to say thank you for the safety culture your company has. It’s a breath of fresh air to see other companies embracing being safe. I sat in on your crews’ safety meeting this morning prior to the start of their work on Ray Rd. “

    Scott Nunemaker – Vice President, RCCM

  • “Kuddos to your guys. Not once has any of your foreman’s EVER put up a fuss when I’ve asked them to work a little late. Response is always “whatever you want and we’ll stay as long as you need us to.” I really appreciate all the hard work they do for me. Thank you sir.”

    Travis Barrick – Field Supervisor, Felix Construction

  • “A big thank you to SSC for jumping on this quickly as they did to help the team get this information so quickly. It’s much appreciated and was pretty impressive to see 5 separate potholing crews descend upon Rio Salado the way they did today!”

    Christopher Laute, Resident Engineer, Valley Metro

  • We’ve used SSC for a number of years and I’ve been very pleased. Thanks and keep up the great work.

    Dave Klann, Staff Engineer, Mactec

  • SSC did a great job. Their assistance during pre-construction was greatly appreciated and differentiated them from the competition. Keep doing what you do best!

    Jim Drago, Sundt Construction

  • I called with short notice to some work and SSC responded immediately. In this market, dollars seem to control everything and quality of people and work seem to have diminished. The professionalism and hard work of your crew takes me back to when people knew what they were doing and cared. Intelligent guys that work […]

    Lonnie Ferguson, Project Manager, Construction 70

  • As a civil engineering consultant, I usually recommend your services but rarely use them with the exception being vacuum excavating. I have attended your seminars in the past and find them very helpful. I recommend continuing the education to make designers better. If we understand and know how to specify your service, we are more […]

    Bill Gasque, Sr. Civil Engineer, Dowl HKM

  • SSC handled the project perfectly even went above to schedule directly with the gas company, made my job easier.

    Tony Smith, Owner, Western Underground

  • You and your staff are always responsive to our needs and make sure you clearly understand the scope of the work in advance, so there are no surprises. I really appreciate that attitude.

    Michael Rhodes, Civil Engineer, Gila River Indian Community

  • Overall a good company. Very professional in approach and execution of work. Courtesy and respect shown by all personnel, a welcome rarity in the business. Keep doing what you’re doing, and thank you.

    M. Gartner, Project Manager, Sybrant Construction

  • We have been using your company’s services for about 3 years now. I have never heard a negative comment. Bringing Curtis on board is a definite plus as far as I am concerned. He keeps me informed about the work that I have done and he is very through and dependable.

    David Cross, Utility Coordinator, MCDOT

  • Your field crew did a great job!

    Nick Nikrant, Project Manager, Builders Guild

  • Crew was courteous & helpful.

    Jayde Bullard, Project Manager, Caljet of America, LLC.

  • This is the second time working with this foreman. Will request him again. Easy to work with.

    David Willett, Aero Automatic Sprinkler Co.

  • Superb foreman…Exceptional!

    Curtis Briggs, Shea Homes

  • Great work! SSC was timely, responsive and professional. I would use them again.

    Stewart Vaghti, Project Engineer, Gannett Fleming, Inc.

  • I have always had good and quick service from SSC.

    Sally Raymer, Sundt Construction

  • Arvid was very accommodating in getting crew onsite within 2 hours of my call.

    Dennis Sime, Project Superintendent, Hunter Contracting

  • First I want to express once again how impressed I am with you and your support group. You are all “top notch.” Yes the job went well and I appreciate your help. It really made a huge difference on such a critical facility. I still can’t believe (even though I saw it with my own […]

    David McKinley, VFC-Arizona

  • Great service on short notice. Thanks!

    Richard Komzelman, Carson Construction

  • The entire SSC crew was extremely professional and flexible. All of your company’s efforts are greatly appreciated and you will be our boring subcontractor on any future projects.

    Ben Myers, Project Manager, GRG Construction

  • Your team made this challenging casing push a success.

    Michael Fossett, Project Manager, SDB Inc.

  • Extensive knowledge of the local soil conditions coupled with their proven skills has insured that every job is completed within our schedule and budget. We’ve worked with SSC for many years and always found them to more than equal our high required standards and able to complete any task.

    Brian Chavez, Chief Estimator/Project Manager, Tyers Contracting

  • I would like to thank you for your prompt response to our urgent need for your services. The men you sent did a fantastic and quick bore. We do so appreciate your company for that. Thanks!

    Patricia Riggs, Town of Gila Bend

  • Our job was especially challenging. The SSC team worked six days, around the clock and the testimony to the success of their efforts is that the general public never knew they were here. An additional thanks to SSC for their professional courtesy. In our industry, it is something I do not encounter often enough.

    Chris McCoy, Superintendent, Gilbane Building Company

  • Your project manpower’s knowledge, attitude, safety and work ethic are outstanding!

    Mike Levi, Estimator/Project Manager, Holloman Corporation