The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) selected Volkert to design the rehabilitation of a 134-year-old wrought iron, one-lane truss bridge that was classified as structurally deficient.
VDOT tasked Volkert with finding a way to rehabilitate the old structure and construct a new one-lane bridge adjacent to it on a new alignment.
Adding to the challenge of preserving the historic structure, Norfolk Southern Railroad plans to add two tracks to the ones currently under the bridge. Volkert investigated multiple options for keeping the truss in place while still meeting the railroad horizontal clearance requirements.
Volkert’s solution was to build tall abutments outside of the railroad proposed clear zone and construct cantilevered ledges at the top of the abutment to reach out and support the truss. The ledges extend 7 feet, 7 inches from the face of the abutment stem.
After disassembly and inspection of the bridge members, the existing truss was shipped to Tampa Steel in Florida, where new members were fabricated and existing members to be reused were cleaned and strengthened. The rehabilitated truss was reconstructed in the shop prior to being shipped back.
Once erected on new concrete abutments, the rehabilitated truss was painted silver to match its original appearance.