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Foundation innovations ensure successful bridge replacement

Published in:  
Deep Foundations, The Magazine of The Deep Foundations Institute (DFI)

Jean Louis Z. Locsin, Ph.D., P.E., Heather B. Scranton, P.E., Alec D. Smith, Ph.D., P.E., Haley & Aldrich; Mary Vittoria-Bertrand, P.E., RIDOT; and Mark S. Greenleaf, P.E., Commonwealth Engineers and Consultants

Rhode Island’s new $163.7 million, 2,265 ft (690 m) long, four-lane ¬†Sakonnet River Bridge sits just south of the existing bridge in Portsmouth/Tiverton, RI. The bridge, a critical transportation system link between Massachusetts and Rhode Island, has a steel I-girder main span and concrete New England Bulb Tee approach spans. The foundation work was done between October 2009 and July 2010, and the bridge was completed in February 2014.Constructing a new bridge adjacent to an existing bridge, and generating high-capacity foundation elements in deep silty soils proved to be challenging. However, innovative design solutions were created through close collaboration of teaming partners, saving about $9 million in costs, plus additional savings in time.

Photo credit Rhode Island Department of Transportation.