CTRE is an Iowa State University center, administered by the Institute for Transportation.

Address: 2711 S. Loop Drive, Suite 4700, Ames, IA 50010-8664

Phone: 515-294-8103
FAX: 515-294-0467

Website: www.ctre.iastate.edu/

Iowa State University--Becoming the Best

MnDOT LRRB Development of Cost-Effective Timber Bridge Repair Techniques for Minnesota

Researcher(s)

Principal investigators:

Project status

Completed

Start date: 02/01/13
End date: 11/30/15

Publications

Report: Development of Cost-Effective Timber Bridge Repair Techniques for Minnesota (NA pdf) November 2015

Related publications:

Sponsor(s)/partner(s)

Sponsor(s): Minnesota Department of Transportation

About the research

Abstract:

The primary objective of this work is to provide formal guidance to county engineers throughout Minnesota for repairing timber bridge components. The benefit of having such a resource will be measured by improving the overall condition of the transportation system and reducing system failures through implementation by local officials.

As is often the case, funds required to complete repairs are limited and, as a result, any method used must not only be structurally feasible but also economically feasible. This report provides bridge owners and caretakers several routine maintenance and repair options aimed to meet the goals of simplicity and affordability.

The economic impact of repairing timber bridges was assessed for multiple scenarios: a comparison was made between the net present value of repair at varying repair costs over time and the net present value of varying reconstruction costs over time. Through this exercise, for each scenario, a point in time was identified when repair or reconstruction makes most economic sense.

An additional assessment of overall costs (direct plus indirect) was completed, which included the increased user costs due to bridge posting or closure. This assessment made clear that when indirect costs are included, the benefits of maintaining or repairing a bridge to prevent posting or closure become great.

A standalone manual, Cost-Effective Timber Bridge Repairs: Manual for Repairs of Timber Bridges in Minnesota, was also developed for this project.