VIDEO: Steel Erectors, Crane Service Companies Take Top Place in 3D Lift Plan of the Year Competition

Mon October 30, 2023
A1A Software

A1A Software LLC announced the winners of its Lift Plan of the Year contest, which include a structural steel erector based in Illinois, a crane and rigging service company in Pennsylvania, and Texas contractor offering both structural steel erection and crane services.

Steven Beemsterboer, a project manager of Metropolitan Steel, was the First Place winner for his lift plans of an ongoing project for the Chicago Department of Transportation. The company is erecting the steel for Damen Greenline Station, a rapid transit station, expected to open in 2024.

"For us, 3D Lift Plan has been a game-changing solution for three-dimensional crane modeling. It was invaluable for navigating this difficult project and transformed the way we approach crane operations, revolutionizing our workflow and driving unprecedented efficiency," said Beemsterboer, who is a Level 3 Certified Expert user of the program.

"By leveraging 3D Lift Plan, we can now create meticulously detailed lift plans to scale, allowing us to make cost-effective decisions that save both time and money. With the ability to select the ideal crane model and determine the correct capacities for each specific job, we can confidently optimize our lifting operations. On this specific project, we had many twists and turns requiring us to change crane models, location of the crane, rigging, and more," added Beemsterboer.

On the Damen Greenline Station, work required a minimum of five different cranes. Metropolitan Steel utilized 3D Lift Plan's large catalog of cranes to assist with making accurate, cost-effective decisions on which crane to use.

Second place was awarded to Trapper Wyman, president of Mansfield Crane Service Corp., and the company's primary Lift Planner. Wyman has been a 3D Lift Plan Level 3 Certified Expert since 2015 and was selected as a finalist in the contest on two previous occasions.

For this project, Mansfield Crane Service needed to lift a flue gas cooler during a maintenance shutdown. The old cooler was lifted out of the building, over de-energized electric lines, then layed over using a second crane, then a new unit was installed.

"We were able to explain the complexity and constraints of the job to the customer by using 3D Lift Plan by showing the order of steps to demonstrate the lift process," said Wyman.

Mansfield Crane utilized the 3D animation tool to give a full perspective of the job site.

Anthony Ortiz, project manager of Alliance Riggers & Constructors, the third place winner, explained that his company used 3D Lift Plan at every stage of the project — from sales presentations to potential customers through the bidding process and for pre-planning and site logistics. This project required removing a digester lid for El Paso Water and involved complex rigging.

"3D Lift Plan's collaborative features facilitate effective communication among team members, enabling seamless coordination and better project outcomes. The software generates comprehensive reports and documentation, ensuring transparency and accountability in each phase of the project," said Ortiz.

The rigging plan for lifting the digester lid started from top to bottom with steel round sling wire rope grommets, 75 ton wide body shackles, a collector ring, 9.8 ton shackles, steel slings, 25 ton shackles, 2 in. turnbuckles and custom fabricated and engineered lLifting lugs, which were welded to the trusses.

The other finalists in the contest included:

  • Jesse Bower, a sales specialist of Jcrane Inc., Covington, Ohio
  • Christopher Erickson, VP of Operations of Midwest Crane Services, Tulsa, Okla.

Additional details about each of the projects and the lift plans submitted for the 2022 Lift Plan of the Year can be found at: