Gardner Street Roadway Improvements

Worcester, MA
Key Elements
  • Roadway lowering beneath active bridge
  • Complex utility relocation and roadway grading
  • ACEC/MA Engineering Excellence Award

Table Talk Pies, a family-owned food manufacturing business, has served the community of the City of Worcester for nearly a century. Working with the City of Worcester to connect Table Talk Pies’ existing freezer facility to their new oven facility, Nitsch lowered the Gardner Street roadway beneath an active CSX Bridge to provide adequate clearance for trucks traveling between the two buildings. The unique solution required an innovative use of micropiles to protect the structural integrity of the bridge, while maintaining ADA-compliant sidewalks, relocating roadway utilities, and adding on-street parking. Our design integrates a safer roadway, offers current and future benefit to the City for utility maintenance, and ultimately allows Table Talk Pies to remain in Worcester and continue serving those who love it.

As the prime consultant to the City of Worcester, Nitsch worked under an expedited schedule to support the roadway and infrastructure improvements to Gardner Street. Our transportation engineers’ design lowered the existing roadway by roughly two feet; the design implements a “sag vertical curve” to create a new low point in the road, providing sufficient space (MassDOT clearance standards of 14 feet) for large vehicles to pass beneath the bridge.

Our structural engineers designed new retaining walls between the roadway and the sidewalks to ensure that while the roadway was lowered, the adjacent sidewalks were maintained at their pre-construction elevations in order to prevent undermining the existing bridge abutments and to remain ADA compliant. Nitsch also coordinated with local utility stakeholders to relocate and/or lower existing utility lines while the new utilities were installed, allowing all utilities to remain functional for surrounding abutters during the roadway lowering process.

Additionally, our work included drainage design, private utility coordination design, traffic management plans for construction, the addition of accessible sidewalks and formal on-street parking spots, and complex roadway grading.

This project won a 2023 American Council of Engineering Companies/MA (ACEC/MA) Engineering Excellence Bronze Award.

“Under an expedited schedule, Nitsch Engineering was able to deliver a design that is both effective and forward-thinking.”

Kerry A. Reed, PE, LEED AP, Assistant Commissioner of Engineering, City of Worcester Department of Public Works & Parks

Key Collaborators

Owner: City of Worcester
General Contractor: Morais Concrete Service
Geotechnical Engineer: Lahlaf Geotechnical Consulting, Inc.