Title: Deck Strengthening for Country Hills Bridge in Canada
Author(s): G. Tadros, K. McWhinnie, and J. Kroman
Publication: Symposium Paper
Appears on pages(s): 455-466
Keywords: bridge girders; carbon fiber polymer; design; flexure; strength; strips
Bridge rehabilitation is becoming as much an art as a science. The design of new bridges involves the application of current aesthetic principles and the latest engineering tools to create a new structure. Bridge rehabilitation, on the other hand, takes the bridge as it is, warts and all, and tries to bring it back to health. The science of bridge rehabilitation includes load assessment and structural and member analysis. The art of bridge rehabilitation includes the condition assessment and the judgement needed to determine the most appropriate treatment required. Usually, the bridge rehabilitation engineer is faced with a number of options and a balance has to be reached between the extent and cost of repair work, and the estimated remaining life of the repaired structure. Rehabilitation engineers try to account for this by using fairly subjective, life cycle cost analysis techniques. Often, however rehabilitation decisions are based on factors other than engineering ones. Intuition, which Winston Churchill called 'logic in a hurry', and experience usually play a major role in the art of bridge rehabilitation. This paper describes a bridge rehabilitation project in the Canadian Prairies, where the extreme climate plays an important part in the design and construction of bridges. It outlines the engineering steps followed in assessing the strength of the bridge and the strengthening measures adopted. It shows how bridge rehabilitation engineers are constantly searching for new ways to meet the challenge of bridge care, and introduces the carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) strips as a method of deck strengthening.