Pipeline projects are major undertakings that often impact multiple landowners across a range of topographies over many miles. Access planning for these types of projects requires skill, experience, and knowledge of all the materials, equipment, and strategies that might be employed at every stage. Understanding potential construction access solutions is critical for project success. 

Considerations for Pipeline Access Solutions

With the pipeline construction market still recovering from the sharp dip in 2020, keeping project costs down is as important as ever. . Here’s what you need to know when planning your next pipeline project. 

Efficiency matters.

The project clock starts as soon as clearing begins, which means crews must work efficiently to keep overall costs in line with budgets. As soon the right of way is clear and safe for access, the pipeline team can begin work.   

Customization is key.

Every pipeline project is different. Whether going through mountains or marshes, the access solutions must match the terrain. There is no one-size-fits-all solution to site access, so having an experienced access planner is essential. 

You can’t always rely on the same materials and equipment you used in the last project. Depending on the terrain, the equipment you need to move, and whether the road will be temporary or permanent, you might need to use dirt, gravel, or a combination of access matting solutions.  

Plan from beginning to end. 

The process of closing out a project and restoring the land is a critical component of the project that should be included in the initial planning. Have a plan—and a budget—in place for cleaning up the site, remediating the right of way, and restoring the land to its original condition. Of course, the access solutions you choose will play a role in how much remediation is required, so plan carefully to save time and resources. 

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Construction Access Solutions for Pipeline Projects

When planning a pipeline project, you’ll need a number of solutions to ensure safe access and minimal impact. 

Access Roads

When temporary access roads are required for people to travel between paved roads and the right of way, you need solutions that are easy to install and remove when the project is complete. Roads might have to traverse a range of terrain, including:

  • Fields and pastures

  • Forested areas

  • Streams and wetlands

  • Mountainous areas

  • Snow and ice

Using a combination of gravel and appropriate matting solutions will allow you to provide safe access to the right of way while protecting the ground below. 

Site Clearing

In addition to the right of way, areas need to be cleared for staging, storage, offices, and parking. Depending on the site, various types of terrain might need to be cleared to accommodate the right of way and associated space requirements. This might require:

  • Removing and disposing of trees and brush

  • Grinding stumps

  • Removing large rocks from the area

  • Installing erosion control devices

  • Grading and leveling

Once the site is ready, heavy equipment can travel on the temporary roads to the right of way for trench-digging to begin. 

Site Support

Look for a site access provider that does more than just supply materials and equipment. You need a partner that has the expertise to provide strategy for cost-effective access, ongoing support, and adaptable solutions when conditions change. Even the best plans can fluctuate in unexpected situations. Whether it’s inclement weather you didn’t plan for, compliance with environmental regulations, or surprises below the surface, you want to work with a provider that can offer fast, flexible solutions. 


After a pipeline has been successfully installed, the right of way and temporary access roads must be restored to their original condition. This might require:

  • Removing access matting

  • Re-grading

  • Reseeding plants and grasses

  • Installing permanent erosion control measures 

Other specific restoration measures may also be required depending on the agreements with landowners, environmental regulations, or mandates on protected land. 



YAK ACCESS delivers more than just access mats. We provide planning, clearing, sitework, and restoration services for both union and non-union pipeline projects. With years of experience with access plan development, our teams provide the up-front planning necessary for safe operations and optimal use of materials.

Our goal is to help you create efficiencies and minimize project costs at every stage. Get in touch with our pipeline team to discuss the access solutions that make the most sense for your project.

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