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Ambridge/Aliquippa Bridge Underway in Pa.

By: Brenda Ruggiero - CEG CORRESPONDENT

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) awarded the contract to Trumbull Corporation of Pittsburgh, Pa. Kevin Kilmer serves as the senior project engineer.
The project includes approximately 500,000 lbs. (226,796 kg) of steel repairs, 1,450 cu. yds. (1,109 cu m) of concrete for the bridge deck, 400 cu. yds. (306 cu m) of concrete for the parapet walls, 14,000 rivets for the rivet replacement and 400,000 sq. ft. (37,161 sq m) of painting of the structure.
The 2,000-ft. (610-m) long bridge was originally built in 1927, and the approach spans were completed in the late 1950s during the construction of Route 65 and Route 51. The 85-year-old bridge is eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places.
The contract calls for rehabilitation of the 10-span bridge, including deck and sidewalk replacement, steel repairs, concrete spall repairs, structural steel painting, new parapet walls, railing repairs, bituminious paving patching, pavement markings and other miscellaneous work.
A $16.7 million rehabilitation project is currently under way for a 10-span cantilever through truss bridge in Beaver County, Pa.

A $16.7 million rehabilitation project is currently under way for a 10-span cantilever through truss bridge in Beaver County, Pa.

The 2,000-ft. (610-m) long bridge was originally built in 1927, and the approach spans were completed in the late 1950s during the construction of Route 65 and Route 51. The 85-year-old bridge is eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) awarded the contract to Trumbull Corporation of Pittsburgh, Pa. Kevin Kilmer serves as the senior project engineer.

The contract calls for rehabilitation of the 10-span bridge, including deck and sidewalk replacement, steel repairs, concrete spall repairs, structural steel painting, new parapet walls, railing repairs, bituminious paving patching, pavement markings and other miscellaneous work.

The sidewalk railing is still the original railing from 1927. It will be repaired, repainted, and reinstalled with the new sidewalk.

According to James Struzzi II, press officer of PennDOT’s engineering district 11, the project was challenging because of the aggressive schedule necessary to open the bridge by the milestone date of Nov. 14, 2013.

“Clearance over the railroad tracks is minimal, and there are unforeseen steel repairs that cannot be identified until the deck is removed and the existing steel blasted,” he said.

Since the river crossing was originally constructed in 1927, there are some unique aspects.

“The entire structure is actually several different types of structures combined together to make one long structure,” Struzzi said.


“For example, there are suspension spans, simple spans, cantilever spans, anchor spans, and a pony truss. Lightweight concrete was placed on the bridge deck.”

Trumbull Corporation reported that, due to its age, the Ambridge/Aliquippa Bridge has a posted load limit of only 17 tons (15 t). This load restriction limits the size and amount of equipment that can be used on the bridge at one time. For each major activity, Trumbull must develop a loading plan to be submitted and approved by the designer.

The project includes approximately 500,000 lbs. (226,796 kg) of steel repairs, 1,450 cu. yds. (1,109 cu m) of concrete for the bridge deck, 400 cu. yds. (306 cu m) of concrete for the parapet walls, 14,000 rivets for the rivet replacement and 400,000 sq. ft. (37,161 sq m) of painting of the structure.

Struzzi noted that key subcontractors were Abate Irwin, Eighty Four, Pa., for steel repairs; Madura Steel, Hermitage, Pa., steel supplier; Avalotis Corp., Verona, Pa., for painting of the structure; Beth’s Barricades, Gibsonia, Pa., for traffic control; Vantage Corp., Carnegie, Pa., for electrical work; and Parking Lot Painting, Bethel Park, Pa., for pavement markings.

He said that the equipment list varies, but includes loaders, excavators, under-decking, manlifts, tri-axles, a recycler for the paint grit, blasting pots, air compressors, hand tools, rivet busters, and light plants.