From the big dig



Keywords: from the big dig
Description: January: Matthew Amorello, chairman and chief executive officer of the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority, hires retired probate court judge Edward M. Ginsburg to lead the agency's cost-recovery

January: Matthew Amorello, chairman and chief executive officer of the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority, hires retired probate court judge Edward M. Ginsburg to lead the agency's cost-recovery efforts.

January: Icy road conditions inside the northbound tunnel of Interstate 93 force the closing of one lane, and traffic backs up into Milton.

March: On evidence obtained from Ginsburg's team, the state sues Bechtel Corp. and Parsons Brinckerhoff for $146 million, alleging the firms made inaccurate cost estimates in public, to continue lucrative contracts.

September: Water gushes into the Central Artery's northbound tunnel for hours, backing up afternoon rush-hour traffic for miles.

Nov. 11: A report says engineers discovered that the project is riddled with hundreds of leaks and that Bechtel managers were aware that the wall was deficient from the moment it was built in the late 1990s, yet did not order it replaced and did not inform state officials of the situation.

Jan. 13: Amorello announces an agreement with Attorney General Thomas F. Reilly to turn over cost-recovery responsibilities.

Jan. 25: Romney again asks Amorello to step down, when a new report on Big Dig managers accuses them of impeding the investigation into tunnel leaks.

March: Chunks of melting snow and ice fall from the cables of the Leonard P. Zakim Bunker Hill Bridge and force the temporary closing of four traffic lanes on I-93.

April 4: A Federal Highway Administration report says that tunnels are safe, but that the state must develop an aggressive tunnel-inspection program.

April 5: A day after the FHA declares the tunnels safe, rocks and other debris rain down from an overhead vent in the I-93 southbound tunnel and damage five vehicles.

May 26: Big Dig officials say two leaks have been spewing 20 to 30 gallons of water a minute into the Fort Point Channel section of the Interstate 90 tunnel since last winter.

July: An inspection finds a 1,500-foot stretch of the tunnel near the North End to be the most problem-plagued area of the project, with weaknesses in the tunnel walls that exceed those in the section of tunnel that had a gushing leak in 2004.

December: The Globe discloses that Amorello interviewed in the fall for a top position to manage all construction at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, but was passed over for another candidate.

February: The attorney general's office demands $108 million in refunds from Big Dig contractors. The demand was made in a Feb. 7 letter to the lawyer representing Bechtel/Parsons Brinckerhoff, the private sector manager of the project, and the two- dozen smaller design firms supervised by the consortium.

May: Six managers from Aggregate Industries NE Inc. are indicted on charges of running a conspiracy that delivered 5,000 truckloads of tainted concrete, 1.2 percent of the concrete used on the Big Dig over nine years.

July 10: A 2 1/2- to 3-ton concrete ceiling panel in the I-90 connector tunnel falls, killing a woman.

July 12: Inspectors find at least 60 faulty bolt fixtures in the ceiling of the tunnel. The attorney general says tests conducted in 1999 showed that the ceiling bolts had a tendency to come loose.

July 13: Romney announces he is filing emergency legislation to give him control of inspections in the highway tunnel network, as well as the final decision on reopening the tunnel.






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