Construction crews are working on a historic bridge project in Beckley.
Contractors are building a 190-foot span at Stanaford Road using an innovative construction method. The bridge uses a GRS/IBS (Geosynthetic Reinforced Soil-Integrated Bridge System) type of design instead of traditional concrete abutments.
“The WV 41 Stanaford Road GRS/IBS bridge contract is an exciting project for our team here at the West Virginia Division of Highways (WVDOH) due to the magnitude of the structure and to be underway constructing the largest spanned bridge, at 190 feet, of this type of abutment construction in the world,” said Josh Howell, P.E., WVDOH District 10 Construction Engineer.
The GRS/IBS type of bridge design uses rock fill with fabric geosynthetic reinforcement to construct abutments and to create an interface between the roadway and bridge. The technique eliminates the infamous bump that occurs at the start and end of each bridge.
The fifth and final girder on the Stanaford Road bridge was set by crews from Triton Construction. Crews will now begin to set deck pans to pour the bridge deck.
The Stanaford Road bridge connects US 19 (N Eisenhower Drive) to the East Beckley Bypass over Cranberry Creek.
A second bridge using GRS/IBS technology is being built at Rural Acres Drive.
This bridge, with a span of 50 feet, replaces an old structure. The girders have been set and the deck has been poured. The next step is building the parapet walls.
The bridge will connect Rural Acres Drive to US 19.
“We are grateful in District 10 to get to exercise this tool in our toolbox for new bridge construction,” said Ryland Musick, P.E., WVDOH District 10 District Engineer.
“District 10 is always open and willing to experience new innovations in construction and technology to promote the best transportation system possible, “ he said.
The project will also require changes to the intersection near Mountaineer Ford.
“Instead of having the grassy highlands and split turn lanes, it will bring it more to a four-way crossing,” Howell said of the more effective intersection planned.
The anticipated completion date for both bridges is late summer of 2023. Triton Construction was awarded the project for $6.7 million.