Portugues Dam

Portugues Dam photo

Dragados USA


Department of the Army Jacksonville District Corps of Engineers


Ponce, Puerto Rico


Est. Cost - $215 million


Project Quality Control Manager

Construction monitoring & monthly reporting

Submittal review and processing

Materials testing and surveying

This estimated five year, $200 million dollar project constructed a thick arch, Roller Compacted Concrete (RCC) single center dam across the Portugues River in Ponce, Puerto Rico. The dam is 220-feet high, with a crest length of 1,230 feet, an estimated 356,000 cubic yards of RCC and a projected water storage capacity of 9,500 acre-feet. The dam provides flood protection for a 100 year storm event to almost 40,000 people, over 13,000 residential structures, as well as invaluable commercial and civic structures in the city of Ponce. Projected flood damage reduction benefits range between $300 and $500 million during a 100 year storm event.

Appurtenant structures include an integral spillway and intake structure and a valve house (with control room for the reservoir operation) located downstream adjacent to the river. Work also included foundation excavation in rock, placing foundation concrete, foundation grouting, development of an on-site quarry for concrete aggregate production and an on-site concrete batch plant. The site preparation requires removing over 500,000 cubic yards of overburden material.

As a sub consultant to the contractor Dragados USA, CSA personnel managed the Quality Control efforts of this project, assisting or preparing Submittals and Request for Information (RFI) for submittal in accordance with the in-place US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) approved Quality Control System and requirements, reviewing submittals and RFI’s for compliance with submission and timing requirements of the technical specifications, participating in meetings with the USACE; providing engineering support to the preparation of technical documentation; providing as-needed on-call engineering support and providing as-needed technical support on critical field activities such as blasting operations, foundation grouting, foundation preparation and treatment, instrumentation installation, mechanical installations, and RCC testing/placement. Additionally, supervision of the contractor construction safety program is performed, preparing and maintaining the project safety plan, performing all necessary risk analysis and mitigation reviews and monitoring the implementation of the safety program and required training in accordance with USACE contractual requirements.

This project won Second place in the 2014 CEMEX Building Award in the International Infrastructure & Urbanism Category.

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