RESTON, Va. — The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) today announced the 2024 recipients of its Outstanding Civil Engineering Achievement (OCEA) Award nominations, which recognize exemplary civil engineering projects. The award honors projects that exemplify state-of-the-art engineering skills and provide major contributions to the communities in which they are built, in addition to advancing the civil engineering profession. Of the eleven nominees, a winner and two runners-up will be announced during the annual OPAL Gala, which is scheduled for October 8, 2024, in Tampa, Florida, at ASCE’s 2024 Convention.

“The projects nominated for ASCE’s OCEA awards advance innovation, technology, resilience, and ingenuity as civil engineers build the infrastructure of the future,” said Marsia Geldert-Murphey, P.E., 2024 President, ASCE. “The dedication and hard work of the people who designed and built these projects, which provide significant benefits to their communities, will inspire young and future civil engineers to consider how they can help improve quality of life and advance the profession through similar works. Congratulations to all the honorees.”

The 2024 OCEA nominees are:

BNSF Sandpoint Junction Connector (Sandpoint, ID)

The Sandpoint Junction Connector is a new 2.7-mile stretch of railroad track owned by BNSF in Idaho, including a 4,800-foot-long bridge over Lake Pend Oreille. The connector helps improve supply chains along a critical cross-country railroad, reduce bottlenecked train traffic and vehicular traffic caused by backed-up trains. The new bridge opened nearly a year ahead of schedule and was built with extensive protections to ensure minimal impact to Lake Pend Oreille’s water and fish.

Cross Bay Link (Hong Kong)

Cross Bay Link is a 1.8-kilometer road to link the fast-growing community of Tseung Kwan O and Hong Kong’s urban center. The new bridge reduces commuting time by 20 minutes. Cross Bay Link is part of a 5-kilometer-long walking and cycling loop to encourage a healthy lifestyle. Much of the bridge was built off-site, then assembled at the construction site. Bridge engineers used extensive wind tunnel testing to ensure its resilience during strong typhoons and other wind events.

EchoWater Project (Sacramento, CA)

The EchoWater Project is a $1.67-billion water treatment plant built by the Sacramento Regional County Sanitation District. It is the district’s most significant upgrade to its wastewater treatment plant since the 1970s and produces cleaner water for discharge into the Sacramento River, as well as offers potential reuse for recycled water. Construction of the plant was the result of new limits on what can be discharged into the river. Because of the farmland surrounding the water district, the removal of organic matter like nitrates and ammonia from the water is of critical need. The EchoWater Project removes 99% of it. The project helps improve water quality in the Sacramento River and the water supply for millions of people in California.

Fern Hollow Bridge Emergency Replacement Project (Pittsburgh, PA)

The Fern Hollow Bridge in Pittsburgh collapsed nearly 100 feet into a ravine on January 28, 2022. Less than a year later, on December 22, 2022, the replacement bridge opened to traffic. Design of the new bridge started three days after the bridge collapsed. Engineers faced challenges from nearby existing structures, unclear property boundaries, and supply chain issues. The new bridge has improved access for bicyclists and pedestrians and added safety features on the approach.

Hale Kalele (Honolulu, HI)

Hale Kalele is a public-private partnership built on a previously underutilized piece of land in Downtown Honolulu that serves as both a youth center and affordable rental units. Because of the two different uses for the building, designers had to find creative solutions to keep the different areas of Hale Kaleke separate, including fire exits. The building relies on tunnel-form concrete construction where floors and walls were cast simultaneously. Most interior walls are also concrete, which helped speed up construction and provides sound isolation for its residents. Hale Kalele was completed a month early and under budget. 

I-4 Ultimate Improvements Project (Orlando, FL)

The I-4 Ultimate Improvements Project is a $2.87 billion reconstruction of 318 lane miles in central Florida. The project includes the reconstruction of 15 interchanges, 74 bridge replacements, 53 new bridges and Florida’s first barrier separated variable express lanes. Designers included advanced traffic management technology in the highway upgrades which allows real-time monitoring of traffic conditions and for variable toll rates on express lanes. Engineers also strongly considered the environmental impact of the project, which is now Florida’s first Envision Platinum-rated project and the first interstate project in the U.S. to receive that rating.

I-91 Rockingham Bridges (Rockingham, VT)

The I-91 Rockingham Bridges in Vermont replaced aging bridges over the Williams River and Green Mountain Railroad. The bridges sit 130 feet above the river, and some of the largest precast concrete segments in Vermont were used to simplify construction. Engineers factored in Vermont’s harsh winter weather conditions when designing the bridges with a 100-year lifespan. This includes stainless steel reinforcements and concrete that is resistant to chloride penetration. Crews built the foundation for the new bridges underneath the existing bridge while it was still in use, which reduced construction time. Workers faced temperatures as low as -20 degrees while building the structures, which required extra precautions for worker safety and preparation of construction materials in those extreme conditions.

Kansas City International Airport New Terminal (Kansas City, MO)

Kansas City International Airport’s New Terminal is the largest infrastructure project in the city’s history. The 39-gate terminal is designed to accommodate future expansion and replaced three smaller terminals built in the early 1970s. The 1.1-million-square-foot terminal is split into 14 independent structures, each designed for its specific purpose at the airport. The separate structures allowed construction crews to build multiple areas simultaneously, which sped up construction. Much of the terminal has exposed steel framing, which reduced material use and helped the project reach sustainability goals. Materials from one of the old terminals were repurposed for sitework and decorative purposes.

Orlando International Airport Terminal C (Orlando, FL)

Orlando International Airport’s Terminal C is the largest expansion in the airport’s history. The new 15-gate terminal increases the airport’s capacity by 10-12 million passengers annually. The $2.8-billion project is designed to be one of the first LEED v4 airports in the world, with features that reduce water and energy usage and include an on-campus solar array. The new terminal also serves as a multimodal transit center and is the first U.S. airport with a direct connection to intercity high-speed rail.

Presidio Tunnel Tops Park (San Francisco, CA)

This 14-acre park in the heart of San Francisco near the Golden Gate Bridge is on top of two highway tunnels. The park provides pedestrian access between the San Francisco waterfront and the Presidio neighborhood for the first time in decades. Conventional stormwater management tanks in the park were replaced by high-performance rock backfill to allow water to collect and settle before it gradually is absorbed into the ground. Engineers also had to factor in resilience for earthquakes when designing the park.

Sixth Street Viaduct Replacement Project (Los Angeles, CA)

The $588-million Sixth Street Viaduct Replacement opened in July 2022, which replaces a landmark that had been standing since 1932. It is designed to remain operational and undamaged after a once in a 1,000-year earthquake. The 10 arches of the viaduct cross over the Los Angeles River, 18 railroad tracks, Metrolink, and several highways and streets. It has received the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure’s highest Envision certification of platinum. The new viaduct also features a revitalized 12-acre public area with parks, recreational facilities, and river access. It also includes a 3,500-foot-long path for bicyclists and pedestrians.

Learn more about ASCE's OCEA honors.

Learn more about the 2024 ASCE Convention in Tampa, FL.

About the American Society of Civil Engineers

Founded in 1852, the American Society of Civil Engineers represents more than 150,000 civil engineers worldwide and is America's oldest national engineering society. ASCE works to raise awareness of the need to maintain and modernize the nation's infrastructure using sustainable and resilient practices, advocates for increasing and optimizing investment in infrastructure, and improve engineering knowledge and competency. For more information, visit or and follow us on Twitter, @ASCETweets and @ASCEGovRel.