Small Projects (Under $10 Million) Award of Merit: GRS-IBS Bridge Replacement over the Housatonic RR
Owner Massachusetts Dept. of Transportation
Architect Collins Engineers
General Contractor JH Maxymillian
Geotechnical Engineer Dunn Associates Inc.
The project team built the first bridge in Massachusetts that uses Geosynthetic Reinforced Soil–Integrated Bridge System technology. The design was selected as an easily constructible, cost-effective and durable solution that requires less maintenance than traditional designs while providing a smooth riding surface, according to the team.
The bridge superstructure consists of a 105-ft single-span weathering steel multigirder structure with a conventional reinforced concrete deck on a 30% skew. The design reduced the existing skew by 40% while pushing the boundaries of what the technology had achieved to date. At the time of construction, the maximum skew that was used on a GRS-IBS bridge was 24%, according to the team.
A detailed plan set, including a number of construction details, layout plans and quantity sheets not typically included in GRS-IBS plans, helped speed the contractor’s familiarization with the technique.
By using GRS-IBS, the project’s construction was reduced by nearly 50% compared with the original design that called for conventional construction.
The Federal Highway Administration added monitoring equipment during construction to gather information on the structure’s performance relative to horizontal and vertical movement and tilt. The data will provide valuable guidance for future projects of this type.
Crews completed the project in 11,472 work hours with no lost-time accidents.