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The Indiana Department of Transportation reports success with slide-in bridge construction, a process that allowed the agency to replace two bridges on Interstate 70 within eight days each.
Road crews built the new bridge decks on temporary supports beside the existing eastbound and westbound bridges near Richmond. Then the existing bridges were demolished and the new ones were slid laterally into place, the INDOT reports.
This was the state’s first use of slide-in bridge construction on a major interstate, and INDOT plans to use the project as a springboard to other bridge replacements.
“Slide-in bridge construction is intended to provide innovative solutions to the challenges of interstate bridge replacements,” INDOT says. “This project will substantially further the goals of adopting innovative bridge construction techniques, accelerating construction, increasing safety, reducing the costs of maintaining traffic and minimizing impacts to motorists during interstate bridge construction.
“Building the deck in a temporary location and sliding it into place will also improve construction quality. The entire deck can be built at once, which eliminates construction joints in the deck that expose the structure to the elements.”
Walsh Construction Co. was the contractor for the $5.6 million project.