Engineers' Society of Western Pennsylvania


337 Fourth Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15222

Phone: (412) 261-0710 Email: Get Directions

Friday, June 11, 2021

Technical Sessions

RR/Movable Session

Whether your interest is in the design of new moveable bridges, the planning and development of iconic moveable bridge replacement structures, or the critical work of rehabilitating and assessing existing complex moveable bridges, this session is sure to provide the education and information you need.

Session Chair: Frank M. Russo, Ph.D., P.E., Michael Baker International, Philadelphia, PA
Time: 9:00 – 11:30 AM

IBC 21-70: Rope Tensioning, Span Balancing, Gear Indexing, and Seating Corrections of 3 Vertical Lift Bridges
Robert Algazi and Rama Krishnagiri, WSP USA, Lawrenceville, NJ; Michael Abrahams, WSP USA, New York, NY; Georgio Mavrakis and Gerald Oliveto, New Jersey DOT, Ewing, NJ

Three major vertical lift bridges owned and maintained by New Jersey Department of Transportation are included in this preventive
maintenance work plan for wire rope tensioning, span balancing, gear indexing, and span seating corrections to proactively resolve existing
operational issues, preserve and extend the life of the ropes and operating machinery. We will share the design aspects, unanticipated
construction problems and collaborative solutions, to maintain the project schedule and meet the goals within budget.

IBC 21-71: Structure Health Monitoring and Dynamic Response of Two More than Century Old Truss Railroad Bridges
Celso de Oliveira, Sachin Tripathi and Ramesh Malla, Ph.D., F. ASCE, F. EMI, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT

Most of the New England railway bridges were design and built more than a century ago. It is imperative to determine their current dynamic characteristics due to the actual loading and vehicle type to ensure the bridge and passenger safety. This paper presents the Dynamic study of the two old railroad bridges located in Connecticut. This study used different sensors to collect the structural response for both controlled and service loading.

IBC 21-72: ALL EYES ON THE ICON: Navigating the Type Selection Process of the I Street Lift Bridge
Noel Shamble and Hunter Ruthrauff, T.Y. Lin International, Los Gatos, CA

The first bridge for downtown Sacramento in nearly 100 years, the I Street Bridge Replacement Project has drawn the eyes of the entire state capitol region. When presented with building a new bridge which will include a significant 300ft lifting main span, there emerged a strong civic desire to make a once-in-a-generation mark on the cityscape. This intensified the architectural challenge of blending the structural, mechanical, human, and environmental needs of the project into a global icon while still maintaining a “neighborhood” feel for local users. Shared between two cities, this high-profile project attracted input from thousands of citizens, numerous city officials, two mayors, industry leaders, and even a US Congresswoman. Yet, the bridge selection process was smoothly carried out on schedule with clarity and purpose.

IBC 21-73: Withdrawn

Pedestrian Session

This pedestrian bridge session will expose you to three unique pedestrian bridge projects.  These projects will explore aesthetics, community involvement and construction challenges that were overcome to design and build these signature structures.  This session will start with the Lilac Pedestrian Bridge that replaced a historic bridge with a new structure that recreated the aesthetics of the previous Pratt truss.  The Kahasiniskak Pedestrian Bridge which was designed with two variable height box girders combined with inclined guiderails and the UCSD Mesa Housing Pedestrian & Bicycling Bridge which crosses an environmentally sensitive areas and was designed with spliced precast prestressed concrete girders.

Session Chair: Stephen Shanley, P.E., Allegheny County, Pittsburgh, PA
Time: 9:00 – 10:30 AM

IBC 21-74: Design & Construction of the Lilac Pedestrian Bridge
Robert Durfee, Laconia, NH and Cameron Bellisle, Bedford, NH, DuBois & King, Inc.

The Lilac Pedestrian Bridge replaced the historic Lilac Bridge spanning over the Merrimack River. The existing 1909 Pratt through truss bridge was demolished and replaced with a new multiple span prefabricated steel truss superstructure (481 foot total span length) on rehabilitated abutments and piers. The riveted steel truss bridge was closed to vehicles in 1976 and later to pedestrians in 1992 due to safety concerns. The worsening conditions later warranted restriction of boat traffic below for fear of imminent failure of the structure under its own weight. Time was of the essence to replace the declining bridge as it carried an active sewer line (servicing a large portion of town, including the I-93 rest stops). Collapse of the structure could have severed the sewer line, polluting the Merrimack River. An aggressive design and construction schedule was executed for the project. The design requirements for the new prefabricated truss superstructure incorporated multiple conditions so as to mimic the existing historic bridge but scaled down as a new pedestrian bridge. The constraints to be met by the fabricator include the truss type and style among other features like a veiled utility cavity below the deck. The new utilities (sewer, water and telecommunications) were attached below so as to not detract from the historic spectacle of the new bridge. During construction, the existing utilities, pedestrian traffic, and boat navigation on the river had to be maintained while the existing bridge superstructure was demolished (blasted) and the new superstructure moved into place.

IBC 21-75: The Kâhasinîskâk Pedestrian Bridge in Edmonton: Parametric design for user comfort
Pierre-Louis Cons, P.Eng., Omar Moussa, P.E., and Sebastien Cote, P.Eng., Arup Canada Inc., Montréal, QC, Canada

The 64-meter footbridge spans over the new Valley Line light-rail line in Edmonton. While durability and aesthetics were central to the bridge design, it is vibration requirements that lead to parametric design: through an iterative design process, both pedestrian comfort and remarkable slenderness were achieved.

With two double-curved steel girders and inclined guardrails of variable height, the weathering steel bridge now creates a unique visual effect
and offers an exceptional view of downtown.

IBC 21-76: Use of Spliced Girders for Long-Spans Crossing Environmentally Sensitive Areas
Sami Megally and Keith Gazaway, Kleinfelder, San Diego, CA

This paper presents an example of innovative structural engineering solutions for bridges crossing environmentally sensitive areas while maintaining unique architectural features that make bridges remarkable. Spliced girders were used for the long span crossing the environmentally sensitive canyon. The paper presents structural design and construction challenges, as well as architectural features which include curvatures in edge of deck, metal railings with varying inclination, architectural treatments and Lithocrete finish on deck slab of this award-winning bridge.

Foundation Session

Foundations are essential building blocks for any resilient and stable structure. This foundation session will present three papers including:

  • The innovative methods that were used for an emergency sinkhole repair on SR 422 in Lebanon County, Pennsylvania.
  • The remediation for the excessive embankment settlement of the US 68 5-span, continuous prestressed girder bridge over the Lawrence Creek in Maysville, Kentucky.
  • Concepts on how to better close the gap of uncertainty of estimating foundation member resistance due to spatial variability of geotechnical measurements and “method error”.

Session Chair: Margaret A. Jackson, P.E., Pennsylvania Dept. of Transportation, Montoursville, PA
Time: 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

IBC 21-77: An Innovative and Robust Sinkhole Repair for PennDOT
Thomas Leckrone, P.E., C.B.S.I., P.M.P., Ray Stauffer, P.E., Glenn Seibert, P.E. and Frank Namatka, P.E., Gannett Fleming, Inc., Camp Hill, PA

On July 2, 2019, PennDOT District 8-0 and Gannett Fleming formed a rapid design team to remediate a large sinkhole that closed SR 422, a main thoroughfare through Lebanon County. The project team developed a plan of bridging the sinkhole-prone area with a 2-foot-thick, 280-foot-long x 38-foot-wide concrete roadway slab supported with 84 steel micropiles in a 10-foot x 15-foot grid. These micropiles were drilled into competent bedrock as deep as 180 feet.

IBC 21-78: Substantial Downdrag Requires a Micro Solution
Craig Klusman, AECOM, Louisville, KY; Blake Jones, KYTC, Flemingsburg, KY; Joseph Hauber, Geotechnology, Erlanger, KY

The US68 Bridge over Lawrence Creek in Mason County Kentucky is a five span prestressed concrete I-girder bridge, 757 feet in length. Bridge inspectors began noticing problems on the bridge since just after its opening in the late 1990’s. Both abutments have moved inward, resulting in an elimination of the gap between the backwall and ends of the prestressed concrete girders. The elastomeric bearings are showing excessive deformations, and the abutment backwalls and bridge seats exhibit heavy cracking. Significant settlement of the approach fill (upwards of 100 feet thick) has also occurred over the years. Both battered and vertical piles were driven through the approach fill embankments to support the abutments. The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet retained AECOM and Geotechnology to investigate the problem and to determine the appropriate course of action. This presentation will discuss the findings of a geotechnical exploration, slope stability analyses, settlement analyses, batter pile foundation analyses, bridge monitoring, structural investigation, and the evaluation of repair alternatives.

IBC 21-79: Design-oriented Geostatistical Calculation of Pile and Shaft Axial Capacities
Michael Davidson, Ph.D., P.E., and Michael McVay, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL; Michael Faraone, TerraSmart, Fort Myers, FL; Rodrigo Herrera, Florida DOT, Tallahassee, FL

Measured soil and rock properties typically exhibit spatial variability across a given bridge site. Uncertainty arises due to intrinsic spatial variability, and also, when empirical methods are utilized to correlate and integrate site geotechnical data. Quantifying these two distinct sources of uncertainty when computing pile and shaft axial capacities can help bring about: 1) foundation designs that reflect variability specific to a site; 2) identification of distinct geological zones within a site; and, (3) economical allocation of construction materials. Presented in this paper is the means in which statistical methods can be leveraged by practicing geotechnical engineers to compute pile and shaft axial resistance, variability, and uncertainty. Design-oriented procedures that are discussed operate on a collection of borings/corings pertinent to a site of interest, and permit both spatial variability analysis and method error estimation. In this way, design-relevant quantities such as through-depth resistance profiles, associated resistance factors, identification of geological zones, and suggestions for load testing can be produced. Foundation design data generated in this manner are shown for an illustrative case to overcome significant simplifications typical of current practice, where phenomena such as spatial variability are either ignored or indirectly accounted for via significantly more conservative (and more costly) configurations.


W16: Ultra-High Performance Concrete (UHPC) for Bridge Preservation and Repair (Part 2): Expert Panel Discussion
Zachary Haber, Federal Highway Administration, McLean, VA

Time: 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM

The objective of this workshop session is to bring together bridge owners, consultants, contractors, and design in a forum that promoted discussion of recent projects, lessons learned, and challenges related to the use of UHPC for bridge preservation and repair. The session will be interactive, which is a significant benefit to attendees.

W17: Balance Cantilever Bridges using a BIM Methodology
Alexander Mabrich, Bentley Systems, Sunrise, FL

Time: 9:00 – 10:00 AM

Expose the bridge professional to the latest techniques on BIM modeling and design for segmental bridges using the balance cantilever construction method.

W18: Design and Construction of Steel Sheet Piling Structures
Richard Morales, LB Foster, Cumming, GA

Time: 1100 AM – 12:00 PM

The technical workshop will provide a general overview of various innovative solutions using Steel Sheet Piling for Deep Foundations, Case studies will include innovative solutions provided by collaboration with engineers and design-build contractors on projects such as 1) Pennsylvania Turnpike MSE SSP Wall, 2) NY Long Island Marine Development utilizing Open Cell, 3) Orange County (CA) Levee Capacity Increase utilizing silent “Push In Methodology” for SSP in a Congested Residential Neighborhood and 4) Cellular Steel SSP used for Expansion of the Panama Canal.