JEFFERSON CITY - An Interstate 44 improvement project in Laclede and Pulaski counties has been named one of the most significant construction projects of 2011 by the Associated General Contractors of America. As a result, the project's contractor, Columbia-based Emery Sapp and Sons, Inc., was one of 16 firms to receive the association's Alliant Build America Award.AGC cited an innovative bridge sliding procedure which had never been used in Missouri, as well as other techniques used to accelerate the project, in issuing the award. "We were pleased to partner with Emery Sapp and Sons on this project and were very proud of the results," said Missouri Department of Transportation Central District Engineer David Silvester. "Projects such as this highlight MoDOT's commitment to hiring quality contractors that will provide excellent highway improvements for Missouri taxpayers."The Alliant Build America Awards recognize the nation's most significant construction projects. A panel of judges, representing all areas of construction, evaluated a number of submissions, assessing each project's complexity, use of innovative construction techniques and coordination with partners, among other criteria. For more information, visit www.agc.org/awards.