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Project Details

Title:Concrete Structure Design Alternatives for Rural State and Local Roads
Principal Investigators:Nadim Wehbe and Shiling Pei
University:South Dakota State University
Project #:MPC-351
RH Display ID:14129
Keywords:box culverts, bridge design, cast in place concrete, concrete structures, life cycle analysis, life cycle costing, pavement performance, rural highways, service life


State and local governments must address the ongoing need for replacement of bridges and box culverts. Especially on local road systems, a significant portion of structures have far exceeded their expected lives and have become structurally or functionally obsolete.

In many situations, cast-in-place and precast concrete structures are sound, economical replacement alternatives involving some tradeoffs. Cast-in-place structures generally offer excellent performance, but may require longer construction duration and more complex on-site effort. In contrast, precast structures can offer simpler and quicker on-site construction, but occasional problems with performance have been reported. While the relative initial economy of cast-in-place and precast construction methods can be determined from construction bid prices, long-term or life-cycle costs (which depend upon performance) are not well established. Furthermore, it is possible that the selection of the most cost-effective construction method depends upon specific site conditions or design requirements. For example, one type may more effectively address short span lengths, box culvert cross-sections, or stream flows.

To enable local and state transportation agencies to invest their limited funding most effectively, research is needed to provide guidance regarding selection of the most cost-effective concrete bridge construction designs and methods suitable for South Dakota.

Project Deliverables

NDSU Dept 2880P.O. Box 6050Fargo, ND 58108-6050