Development of Guide for Selection of Foundation for ABC Projects

Link to Latest Report: September 2019 Progress Report

Background:
The aim of accelerated bridge construction (ABC) is to reduce the impact of bridge construction on the public and bridge usage by reducing the construction time, enhancing safety, and reducing congestion, particularly when reconstructions are involved. Although many previous studies have investigated the design, configuration, and erection methods for bridge superstructure, limited studies have addressed substructures and foundations.  It is often assumed that the bridge substructure and foundation are ready to receive the superstructure. Field experience, however, suggests that site-specific testing, design and construction of foundations and substructures can be the most time-consuming part of bridge construction.  Therefore, an informed and educated decision on the type of foundation and substructure may define the viability of an ABC project. This is a joint project between Florida International University (FIU) and University of Oklahoma (OU) in which the FIU team leads the substructure part and development of guideline, while the OU team leads the foundation part.

In the proposed study, the research team seeks to develop a Guide that can be readily used by practitioners for the selection of substructures and foundations for different ABC projects. Potential issues related to construction of new bridges and replacement of existing bridges will be discussed.  The study will also include discussions on evaluation and strengthening of existing substructure and foundation for potential reuse. An attempt will be made to identify gaps in existing knowledge and practice and make recommendations for future studies to address these gaps.

Objective:
The primary objective of this project is to provide guidelines for decision making by the designers and bridge owners for the selection of substructure and foundation for new bridges and replacement of existing bridges using the ABC methods, including evaluation, retrofitting, design, and construction.

Scope:
The following tasks will be performed to achieve the project objectives:

  • Task 1 – Develop an Outline for the Guideline:  A draft outline of the Guide for the selection of substructure and foundation for ABC projects has been discussed collaboratively by the research teams at FIU and OU.  This draft outline will be developed and finalized based on the current information.
  • Task 2 – Conduct Literature Search on Topics Identified in the draft outline:  A literature search will be conducted on the topics identified in the guideline.  While this will be a coordinated effort between FIU and OU, the OU team will focus on items having relevance to foundation.
  • Task 3 – Identify Stakeholders and Conduct Survey:  The research team members will work collaboratively and with the ABC-UTC leadership to identify stakeholders for this study. A survey of the stakeholders will be prepared and conducted to identify existing practices that are not available in the open literature.
  • Task 4 – Analysis of Literature Search and Survey Results:  Information from the literature search and survey will be analyzed carefully to document existing practices, best practices, issues, and other important factors such as cost, service life, construction/retrofitting time, and durability.  Although the survey will be conducted jointly, the OU team will analyze the results of questions related to foundation.
  • Task 5 – Identification of Issues and Potential Solutions:  Findings of previous tasks will be used to identify potential issues related to the design and implementation of ABC to foundations and the knowledge gaps that might be hindering the design and use of ABC.
  • Task 6 – Develop Draft Guide:  A draft Guide will be compiled (with FIU leading this activity and OU playing a supportive role) and submitted to the Advisory Panel for review. The draft will be revised based on the review comments.
  • Task 7 – Final Report:  A comprehensive final report will be prepared and submitted.  The report will include the Guideline, and the process used in the development of the Guide will be included. The FIU team will lead this task and the OU team will play a supportive role.

Research Team:
Principal Investigator:  Dr. Musharraf Zaman
Co-Principal Investigator:  Dr. K. Muraleetharan
Research Assistant:  Syed Ashik Ali

Previous Progress Reports: