ASPIRE is a quarterly magazine published by PCI in cooperation with the associations of the National Concrete Bridge Council. The editorial content focuses on the latest technology and key issues in the Concrete Bridge Industry.
Issue link: http://www.aspiremagazinebyengineers.com/i/306189
Long, arching spans and tall, slender p i e r s c re a t e a n e l e g a n t c o n c re t e s e g m e n t a l b r i d g e a c r o s s t h e Monongahela River near Brownsville, Pa. Value-engineering the project from a steel plate-girder design saved $8.5 million while addressing challenges in the planning and construction phases to produce a unique design. The bridge is part of an extensive e x p a n s i o n t o t h e M o n - F a y e t t e Expressway that supports efforts by the National Road Heritage Park. The project's goal is to provide relief for Route 40, shifting it from a major transportation artery to more of a local traffic corridor and tourist destination. T h e b r i d g e a c c o m p l i s h e s t h i s b y improving access, addressing future capacity requirements and drawing traffic (especially trucks) off Route 40 and onto more modern throughways. The project closes a gap in the system between U.S. Route 119 in Uniontown and PA Route 88 in California, Pa. Filling the gap required approximately 17 miles of new limited-access highway costing $605 million. The bridge, a major new crossing of the Monongahela River, consists of 12 major sections, with this new structure commonly referred to as Section 51H. Value-Engineered Savings The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission p ro v i d e d t h e o p p o r t u n i t y f o r a n alternate-design concept to the original steel design. That led FIGG to team with Walsh Construction to create a segmental-concrete option that was considerably more efficient. Walsh's personnel had experience with this design type and were confident of their approach. In part, that was due to their successful construction of a similar design, also produced by FIGG, for the nearby I-76 Allegheny River Bridge in Cheswick, Pa. (See ASPIRE,™ Spring 2009.) That project consisted of a 2350-ft-long structure with 100-ft-tall piers and featured the first use of balanced cantilever construction in Pennsylvania. That similarity for a recent design and local accessible expertise ensured an effective and efficient project for the new structure. The impact of tall piers, limited access, and river, road, and railroad crossings on the construction was minimized by using balanced cantilever concrete segmental construction. To maximize savings, pier locations were adjusted to profile MON- FAYETTE ExPRESSWAY BRIDGE / BROWNSVILLE, PENNSyLVANIA brIDgE DESIgN ENgINEEr: FIGG, Philadelphia, Pa. CoNSTruCTIoN MANAgEMENT/CoNSTruCTIoN INSpECTIoN: SAI Consulting Engineers, California, Pa.; Finley Engineering Group, Tallahassee, Fla. prIME CoNTrACTor: Walsh Construction Co., Canonsburg, Pa. CoNCrETE SuppLIEr: Stone & Company, Charleroi and Uniontown, Pa. poST-TENSIoNINg CoNTrACTor: Schwager Davis Inc., San Jose, Calif. by Brice Urquhart, FIGG, and James Stump, Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission A tAll order Value-engineering creates a tall, elegant concrete segmental design for the Pennsylvania turnpike This rendering of the Monongahela Bridge, still under construction until next spring, shows the sleek design of the superstructure that complements the piers that are up to 200 ft tall. All photos, drawings, and rendering: FIGG. 14 | ASPIRE , Fall 2011 14 | ASPIRE , Fall 2011 P R O J E C T Book_Fall11.indb 14 9/29/11 11:59 AM