Sunday, December 24, 2017

Former US-52 Bridge Replacement over Wabash River near Lafayette, IN

(Bridge Hunter, 3D Satellite)
I added "former" to US-52 because a new US-52+US-231 was built on the west side of town and this road is now the Sagamore Parkway.

I saved this 3D Satellite image since it will be changing because they are replacing the truss bridge with a girder bridge.
3D Satellite
Rob Shellhamer posted six photos with the comment: "Some pics my son took the other day. US-52 crossing the Wabash River in Lafayette, IN."
Dennis DeBruler It looks like they are replacing the truss bridge with a girder bridge. The girders are a pre-stressed concrete bulb tee design. It also looks like the traffic jams will continue during the Winter months. I wonder if they will get it done before the flood season or if they are crossing their fingers that there will be no floods next year.,-86.../data=!3m1!1e3

Rob Shellhamer Yes, they demolished the girder bridge in 2016. Apparently, they've already had some delays for flooding.


Dennis DeBruler This is an excellent view contrasting the thickness of a pre-stressed concrete bulb design girder with a steel girder. Photos taken while the 1936 truss was still standing provide a comparison between truss and the 1969 steel girder design.

Dennis DeBruler Being able to haul a complete girder next to its final destination must greatly reduce the cost of construction. The contract for this bridge is just $13.4m. And the spans are extra wide to provide for a separate 10' multi-use path on the south side. The original estimate for the replacement was $16m.



Dennis DeBruler I didn't notice the truck and the rear-dolly until I looked again. They would have to shut down US-52 completely for this operation. I assume this is the longest span, and Bridge Hunter indicates it is 150'.

Ben StalveyGroup Admin 999
Bridge Hunter says it was eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. Evidently Indiana made sure they got it tore down before it got registered.
The new bridge has a right shoulder almost as wide as a regular lane and has a 10' multi-use lane.

Given that they built new piers, it was probably the piers, not the trusses, that was failing. That is the case with I-64 over the Wabash. I guessed wrong, I found the following comments on Bridge Hunter: "Posted August 24, 2008, by Jeff Wieland: The east bound bridge, which dates to the 1930's, is now scheduled for replacement in 2016. There seems to some sort of paranoia about the resemblance between this bridge and the I-35W bridge in Minnesota." "Posted July 12, 2016, by Jeff Wieland  The eastbound bridge was demolished today." But I was not totally wrong, Ugly Bridges indicates the piers are scoured and that action is required. That explains why they tore the piers down as well.

The truss bridge was rehabilitated in 1985. [Bridge Hunter] A million dollars was spent on 2010 for more repairs. [jsengr] So maybe it had become a money sink and replacement will be cheaper.

I was going to use Street View to try to catch a view of the old truss, but I'm too late. The view from atop the other span has the old bridge gone and they are starting to build the crane's walkway into the river. I learned after more research that they are actually rebuilding the walkway. They must have had a recent flood.
Street View, Aug 2017
They got some piers built on the east side before a flood stopped the work.
Street View, Aug 2017
Going down to IN-43, the work appears to be further long even though the image capture is still Aug 2017. This shows that they can rather quickly rebuild the walkways.
Street View, Aug 2017
Bing doesn't seem to have any street views in this area. I expected that they would have at least done US-52.

(new window)   We learned just a couple of days ago that some now use the term "energetic felling" for a bridge demolition with explosives. Note that the walkways for cranes were well formed during the 2016 bridge removal.

No comments:

Post a Comment