Key West—More than 120,000 square feet of sheet pile is being delivered to the North Roosevelt Boulevard construction site for the first step in rebuilding of the waterway promenade.

American Empire Builders from Miami is installing 1.7 linear miles of sheet pile over the next four months.  “The work involves the use of a large crawler tracker with a vibrating head. This machine has an operator and a helper,” said David Romano with AMEC, senior project engineer for FDOT.  “They hope to install 100 feet of sheet piling per day, moving quickly down the existing seawall from south to north,” he described.

The sheet pile will be vibrated into the bottom to bedrock at depths ranging from 11 to 30 feet.  “While bedrock is pretty shallow along most of the seawall, there are pockets of soft muck in places,” Romano said.  The depth of installation is to provide stability because it is not possible to connect back with additional struts or supports into the ground due to landward requirements for the road and underground utilities, Romano said.

The vibration method of sheet pile installation is less noisy than by hammering, and construction noise should not be disturbing to residents or businesses.

To accommodate this work, the promenade is being closed to bicycle and pedestrian traffic, which is being routed to a six-foot-wide pathway bordered and protected by barriers, with construction on the water side and the roadway on the land side.

The next steps will be installation of the concrete cap at the seawall edge along with installation of drainage improvements, then construction of the promenade itself.  This work should commence immediately after the sheet pile is installed.

For more information on the North Roosevelt Boulevard project, contact FDOT Public Information Specialist Dean Walters, at 305-849-1484 or [email protected].  Also, there is extensive project information at the FDOT project website,, or follow the project on twitter at

Sandy Walters is the president of SWC and Monroe County construction communiations consultant for the FDOT district 6, for projects in Monroe County.


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  1. We can breathe somewhat simpler knowing there is no prompt risk for residents on the area, however if the construction work is deferred the expenses will positively go up and the seawall will be off calendar. On that case one ought to be working to secure whatever elected trusts are justified for this vital undertaking.

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