The 100-Year Bridge: Ohio’s First Box Beam Bridge with CFCC strands

You have likely seen the ongoing media coverage about our nation’s crumbling infrastructure. But, what if bridges could last 100 years – long enough for your great, great grandchildren to use? LJB is working with the Ohio Department of Transportation to evaluate unique materials to add more useful life to Ohio bridges.

For this pilot project, LJB designed the replacement of two existing multi-span prestressed concrete box beam bridges over Clendening Lake in Harrison County—approximately a mile apart from one another. One of the bridges is being constructed using conventional materials, while the other bridge will use corrosion free carbon fiber prestressing strands and stainless steel reinforcing in the superstructure.

The bridges are similar to allow for comparison of the long-term sustainability of different types of material. Both structures are single-span composite box beam bridges on reinforced concrete wall type abutments. Each bridge is transversely post-tensioned, so all aspects of design and construction are the same except for the unique materials for the one superstructure.

The beams were fabricated last week, and the construction contract has been advertised. Construction will be complete by May 2017. The status of the bridges will be evaluated as ODOT performs annual bridge inspections. Initial data shows that while there is a premium for materials costs, the life-cycle costs of using these unique materials will result in significant cost savings and more sustainable infrastructure, as well as the added benefit of not disturbing the traveling public with construction.

Learn more about this interesting project at the Ohio Bridge Conference this week. Members of the design team will present a case study at 12:20 p.m. on August 17.

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