According come the commonwealth Highway administration (FHA), about one out of every 4 of the 600,000 bridges in the unified States needs to be rehabilitated, repaired or totally replaced. The level of standard bridge building and construction it will require to remedy this could an outcome in a large increase in web traffic delays, economic costs, construction-related crashes and utility outages across the nation. Increased bridge construction, or ABC, could be the solution.

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Let’s take a closer look at the drawbacks of traditional bridge construction:

Traffic issues: Imagine the impact on web traffic if a 4 minutes 1 of every the bridges in America to be repaired or replaced over the next several years. It could affect:

Employee productivity, if human being can’t obtain to work on time.Health crises, if it’s impossible for ambulances and also rescue squads to navigate the fastest paths to hospitals or emergency treatment facilities.Emergency situations, if police can’t obtain to the step of a crime conveniently or a fire van can’t do it come a fire.

Economic impact: The FHA reports the the direct and indirect costs of web traffic detours result from the building of a bridge have the right to actually exceed the price of building the leg itself. As soon as traffic lanes room closed in huge urban centers or top top highways with heavy traffic volume, it deserve to have a far-reaching economic impact on the commercial and also industrial companies in the bordering area.

Accidents and also injuries: Construction and traffic-related injuries room all too frequent occurrences ~ above bridge building sites. Each year, roughly 2,000 deadly crashes occur in work-related zones. Forty-four percent that injuries to bridge building and construction workers indicate a vehicle traveling with a work zone, and also two-thirds of these injuries space fatal.

Utility outages: through thousands and also thousands of miles of cables, pipes and other utility-related infrastructure crossing bridges, expanded periods the bridge building can influence the dependable shipment of electricity, cable, Internet, water and also other an important utility services. Workers deserve to unintentionally damages utility tube or cables or be forced to rotate off utilities if an accident occurs on a building site.

The increased Bridge building (ABC) Solution


For the last 2 decades, the bridge building and construction industry has actually been experimenting a equipment that helps avoid or minimize the an unfavorable consequences linked with building bridges. That solution is known as sped up Bridge Construction, or ABC. V the state of the nation’s leg infrastructure coming to be a an essential issue, this technique could, and should, be provided on an ext bridge building projects.

ABC is a way of structure bridges the uses new forms that planning, procurement, design, materials, energy installation and construction approaches that are more secure and more cost-effective. ABC significantly lowers the quantity of time it takes to build new bridges and also replace or rehabilitate currently ones.

This approach is changing how state departments of transportation across America build, replace and repair bridges. Follow to the FHA, states deserve to now change bridges in as small as 48 come 72 hours and also reduce the linked time that takes come plan and construct a leg by years.

Watch a leg being built using ABC: This exceptional time lapse video shows the building of the Keg Creek leg in Iowa using ABC techniques. The took much less than two weeks. The leg was nominated because that an America’s transport Award.

The sped up timing of ABC tasks cuts down on the website traffic delays and road closures that significantly influence the high quality of life in bridge building zones. It reduces the local economic affect as well and lowers the likelihood of construction-related injuries and also fatalities. Quicker building times lessen the chance that local utility services might be interrupted.

In addition, bridges constructed or repaired using increased bridge construction generally have much reduced project costs. And according come the FHA, the innovative alphabet planning and construction methods, designs and also materials create safer, an ext durable bridges through longer business lives 보다 conventionally created ones.

Case research

The situation:

On average, 166,000 vehicles travel over the bridge every day.A huge hospital and also two institutions are adjacent to it.The existing bridge necessary to be changed with a longer and broader one, and the existing outdated cloverleaf interchange had actually to it is in modified right into a chop diamond one.The project used prefabricated bridge components to speed up the building timeline.

The results:

On-site environment of each fifty percent of the new bridge took only a couple of nights over a two-week period.The whole project to be completed in 14 months, consisting of a three-month winter shutdown. It would have taken three to 4 years using traditional methods.Throughout the project, 6 lanes of traffic stayed open during rush hour, with restricted lane closures during off-peak hours.The bridge need to last 75-100 years due to the fact that of the quality of the prefabricated components.

Three an essential ABC Techniques

Three ABC-related technologies in certain are do a huge impact ~ above improving exactly how bridges are built:

Prefabricated bridge Elements and also Systems (PBES)Slide-In leg Construction

Did girlfriend know? According to the FHA, post-construction surveys the residents and also businesses located near abc bridge building projects suggest high levels of customer satisfaction.


# 1 -Geosynthetic Reinforced Soil-Integrated Bridge system (GRS-IBS)

This construction method combines carefully spaced geosynthetic reinforcement and also granular soils right into a new composite material. It’s offered to build abutments and also approach embankments. This technique makes it less likely the they will certainly settle and also create a bump at the finish of the bridge. Using GRS-IBS, it’s less complicated to build and also maintain bridges. Depending upon the project, this construction an approach is 25 come 60 percent more cost-effective 보다 conventional building and construction methods.

#2 – Prefabricated bridge Elements and Systems (PBES)

PBES are structural materials of a leg that are constructed off-site or nearby to the building site. By structure these components ahead that time, that can significantly reduce on-site bridge building and construction time compared to conventional building and construction methods. Utility companies and engineers can arrangement ahead and have piping, cables, fasteners and other materials ready in development and download them quickly and also effectively on-site. Prefabricated bridge aspects built in regulated factory settings are usually higher quality than those constructed exposed come weather on-site.

#3 -Slide-In Bridge building (SIBC)

Slide-In Bridge building and construction often uses prefabricated leg elements and also systems. They’re offered to build a brand-new bridge on momentary supports next to an existing bridge that’s being replaced. Once building of the brand-new bridge is complete, the road is closed and the old leg is demolished or slid out that the way. Then the new bridge is moved right into place, bound in come the approaches, and paved in ~ 48 come 72 hours. One of the last steps in the construction procedure is to tie with each other the utility components constructed into the brand-new bridge v the existing regional utility infrastructure. This can be the fastest and also most cost-effective method to change an currently bridge.

When combination with suitable quality assurance, safety, job management and also construction design practices, the complying with table list the benefits of each alphabet technology:





SaferMore building can be done away native traffic. When disruptions can’t be avoided, the much shorter construction time provides it much easier to do work-related at non-peak steering times, such together nights or weekends.
Lower costThe efficiencies associated with structure bridges using ABC reduce construction-related expenses overall.
Reduces transportation delaysReduced building time cuts under on the size of roadway closures.
Shortens on-site building timeTemperatures, humidity, rain, and wind can hold-up conventional on-site construction. Developing more elements off-site deserve to reduce the influence of harsh weather.
Reduces environmental impactOff-site production and shortened construction times can lessen the environmental influence of construction. Abc may additionally be an efficient solution for environmentally perceptible issues, such as fish spawning season.
Improved qualityConstruction in climate-controlled setups reduces exposure to excessive weather conditions, i beg your pardon can affect the high quality of bridge elements.
Easier to build Better to plan and an ext efficient processes offered by ABC minimize complexities and aid prevent unexpected building and construction issues.
Eliminates “bump at the bridge”Geosynthetic reinforcement eliminates this usual bridge-construction issue.
Easier come make transforms on-siteIt’s much easier to make transforms to bridge components in a controlled environment off-site than a busy building site.
Reduces chance of energy interruptionsBetter job management and design, combination with much shorter construction times, have the right to reduce the chance of occurrences that might lead to energy outages.
Easier to install utilities

Most utility contents are already built off-site. It’s safer and also easier to download them on one inactive bridge and tie them into existing infrastructure once a bridge is moved into place.

Three crucial Factors for alphabet Bridge Design


According come a groundbreaking examine by the strategic Highway research study Program, there space three determinants that should to be incorporated in an alphabet bridge design. The bridge have to be:

1. Together light as possible

All bridge contents — including utility and other infrastructure aspects — need to be designed and developed so they are basic to transport and also install.If the leg is being repaired, the updates should enhance the load rating of currently piers and also foundations. Tip: removed heavy, old utility facilities with newer and lighter systems is a great, often overlooked way to lighten the leg load.

2. As simple as possible

The architecture should need the least variety of girders, field splices, and also bracing solution possible.In addition, it shouldn’t need temporary bracing that needs to be removed, i m sorry slows construction.

3. As basic to erect as possible

Any architecture should alleviate the variety of workers essential on-site and also cast-in-place operations, and include no falsework structures forced for prefabricated elements and also systems. A an excellent ABC bridge architecture should no require complex geometry that requires customized components.Utility elements must be designed to call for the least number of workers to install, and also not interfere with less complicated bridge designs.

Did friend know? According come the FHA, ABC can be the many cost- effective means to build a bridge, specifically when total project costs, including right-of-way acquisition, project administration, maintain of traffic, eco-friendly mitigation, utility relocation, escalation and railroad flagging services, space considered.

ABC is taking Hold


More and much more local agencies are leveraging innovative abc techniques:

Almost one hundred bridges making use of GRS-IBS have been draft or created in the united States due to the fact that October 2010.More than 800 bridges have been constructed using PBES in the very same timeframe.Several states have successfully built bridges making use of slide-in bridge construction, the newest of these technologies.

More bridge videos: You have the right to learn a good deal from accelerated bridge building videos, so check out this one. It shows the installation of a pair of slide-in bridges on busy Highway 84 in Connecticut. Here’s an additional view.

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If your business hasn’t totally embraced abc techniques, it might be time to begin taking advantage of them. With more bridges inquiry replacement and also repair, it might make your firm much more competitive. And since many ABC jobs offer power incentives, leveraging increased bridge construction could do your company more financially rewarding as well.