FALL 2017

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.

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Page 31 of 63

PROJECT Ramp M Tunnel at Eastgate Boulevard Interchange by Michael Sturdevant and Steven Shadix, Stantec Consulting Services Inc. Over the past 35 years, many communities along the 85-mile Interstate 275 (I-275) beltway, which extends through Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky, have experienced significant growth. Nowhere is this more apparent than on the eastern portion of the beltway, in the Eastgate commercial district of Union Township in Clermont County, Ohio. The existing partial cloverleaf interchange of I-275 and State Route (SR) 32 servicing this area is the preferred route for residents from the east traveling to employment centers around Cincinnati. However, the area was plagued by severe traffic congestion during rush hour, resulting in numerous accidents. The situation was primarily caused by the weave of traffic on SR 32 between the exit and entrance ramps of the cloverleaf, as well as the weave of eastbound SR 32 traffic attempting to exit onto Eastgate Boulevard, just 0.5 mi east of the interchange. The Ohio Department of Transportation determined a redesign of the interchange was required to reduce the congestion and number of accidents. After extensive study, the preferred solution for the redesign of the interchange involved eliminating two loops of the cloverleaf, adding a flyover ramp, revising two entrance ramps, and reworking the interchange at Eastgate Boulevard. The revised interchange layout with ramp braiding required seven new bridges, several with significant skews relative to the crossing roadway. At one proposed bridge, carrying entrance ramp D to Eastgate Boulevard over the exit ramp M from I-275, the skew between the crossing roadways was approximately 70 degrees. While studying various layouts for different bridge types, engineers determined that the severe skew would significantly impact the span lengths, construction procedures, construction costs, and the durability of the bridge. An alternative to a bridge was needed. The design team proposed a tunnel consisting of a precast concrete three-sided culvert supported on cast-in-place concrete walls. Each section was 4 ft wide and weighed approximately 22.7 tons. This buried structure eliminated the skew issues, and reduced both the construction cost and maintenance cost over the life of the structure. The resulting structure consists of a precast concrete arch or three-sided culvert, with a clear span width of 48 ft (cont. next page) PROFILE RAMP M TUNNEL AT EASTGATE BOULEVARD INTERCHANGE / CINCINNATI, OHIO BRIDGE DESIGN ENGINEER: Stantec Consulting Services Inc., Cincinnati, Ohio PRIME CONTRACTOR: John R. Jurgensen Company, Cincinnati, Ohio PRECASTER: Contech, West Chester, Ohio OTHER CONSULTANTS: Lighting design: AECOM (formerly URS Corporation), Akron, Ohio; Geotechnical: Gannett Fleming Inc., Columbus, Ohioram

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