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together, including design engineer fi rms and specialty fi rms for right-of-way appraisal and acquisition or utility accommodation work. “TxDOT has been a good partner to work with,” Burnett says. “They did the early legwork on the Spur project, in terms of preparing their schematic and getting it environmentally approved for construction. And since this highway cuts through Fort Bliss, our other partners, the Army Corps of Engineers and the US Army itself, have also been very cooperative, as have the local utility companies, the city of El Paso, and the international airport. It’s not just an Abrams project or a TxDOT project or a US Army project; it’s an El Paso project, and everyone involved has put the project fi rst, instead of looking after their own interests fi rst. We’re all pulling the same way, not against each other.” May 08 www.bus-ex.com 33 “We’ve been able to use our personnel and equipment resources very effi ciently,” he continues, “so the craftsmen, the operators and the machines are all there in the area, working side by side. We don’t have to bring dirt-hauling equipment all the way from Austin, Houston or Dallas; we’re just moving it from one part of the highway construction zone to the BCT sections or vice versa. It’s all confi ned to the same area. And the climate conditions have been nearly ideal, allowing us to work on schedule without weather interruptions.” The commitment is to have part of the Spur open by August 31, 2008, then the second part by May 31, 2009. Burnett has been at Abrams for more than 10 years; before that he was at TxDOT for 29 years, most recently as executive director. He says Abrams’ core business is design-bid-build, as well as design-build, for which he puts teams J.D.Abrams