Friday, August 30, 2013

Work begins at Westbound I-70 at Turner Diagonal Bridge Ramp

Note from the Kansas Department of Transportation:
Overall project work is scheduled to be completed in early November 2013, weather permitting.

As of 1:30 pm on Monday, August 19, the Turner Diagonal to eastbound I-70 bridge ramp is open but restricted to one 12-foot lane due to damage on the bridge ramp structure under the bridge deck from an August 17th related traffic incident.  Inspection work has been completed, parts need to be ordered, and once the parts arrive, then repairs will be made to fix the damaged bridge structure. Project work is scheduled to be completed in early November 2013, weather permitting.

Regarding the damaged concrete on the bridge ramp structure itself, Kansas Department of Transportation and Kansas Turnpike Authority bridge crews worked diligently to remove loose and unstable concrete from the bridge ramp prior to reopening I-70 to unrestricted traffic following the bridge incident. The night of the incident crews used a bucket truck while the interstate was closed to remove the loose concrete. The remaining concrete contained within the damaged area is bonded to and around the reinforcing strands (horizontal and inclined steel strands in photo below)  and the stirrups (vertical steel bars in photo below) which are integrated into the overall bridge structure. The remaining concrete is held sufficiently by the girder reinforcement on the bridge. On top of the bridge ramp itself, concrete barrier has been placed which shifts traffic off the damaged bridge girder area.

The primary reinforcement (and the source of the prestressing) in the beams are the cables that run horizontally. Some of the cables along the bottom are harped, inclined up at the ends.  These cables are made up of multiple individual wires bundled together and are properly called strands. The shear reinforcement for the beam is provided by the stirrups, which are steel bars. The concrete that remains in place is actually bonded around the reinforcing steel.

Safety of the traveling public is at the core of every decision that the Kansas Department of Transportation and the Kansas Turnpike Authority make. Both KDOT and KTA crews continue to monitor the ramp bridge and will continue to do so until the needed repairs are made.

Repair work includes the fabrication and placement of a new bridge girder that will extend from the center pier to the east pier of the ramp bridge. In preparation for the replacement of the damaged girder, a portion of the bridge deck, the bridge rail and damaged girder will need to be removed.