Development of a Strategy to Address Load Posted Bridges Through Reduction in Uncertainty

Development of a Strategy to Address Load Posted Bridges Through Reduction in Uncertainty

Form ProjStat (Rev. 5/2013)


Research Project Statement 18-67
FY 2018 Annual Program
Title: / Development of a Strategy to Address Load Posted Bridges through Reduction in Uncertainty in Load Ratings
The Problem: / According to the 2015 National Bridge Inventory data, the state of Texas houses over 2300 bridges which are posted at load levels below the legal limit. While load postings are generally a management issue, there can be commerce, traffic, and emergency egress issues. For this reason, removing postings is always of interest. Posted structures come in all shapes and sizes, built in different eras and environments, and exhibit vastly different structural behaviors. As such, there is no clear-cut single solution for addressing the possibility of removing postings.
Objectives: / The proposed approach to addressing posted bridges begins with developing a strategy to reduce uncertainty in a safe and appropriate manner, targeted based on the specific details of the bridge and load rating which are easiest to adjust. Examples would include more accurate material properties, refined modeling for less conservative load distribution modeling, and field testing for verification of acceptable load levels. The AASHTO Manual for Bridge Evaluation allows for refined rating, but does not address the challenge of identifying the appropriate structures, so the main effort of this strategy development would be to quantify the population of load posted bridges and identify these areas of opportunity. This would include assessments at the population level (i.e., not bridge specific) of how load ratings can be altered based on practical engineering principles and techniques to achieve maximum return on investment. Finally, an implementation strategy will be developed, including an assessment of additional costs for the implementation, as compared to the benefits of implementation.
Deliverables: /
  1. Technical memorandum for each task completed.
  2. Monthly progress reports.
  3. Value of Research (VoR) that includes both qualitative and economic benefits.
  4. Research report, including:
  1. A strategy for reducing the number of load posted in bridges in the state of Texas through targeted, practical improvements to load ratings aimed at reducing uncertainty that is naturally built into the load rating process.
  2. A synthesis of the population of structures that are currently posted.
  3. A cost-benefit analysis of implementing the strategy.
  1. Project Summary Report

Requirements: /
  1. Utilize the deliverable based templates (see the appendices provided or in the University Handbook)
  2. Proposals will be considered non-responsive and will not be accepted for technical evaluation if they are not received by the deadline or do not meet the requirements stated in RTI’s University Handbook.
  3. Proposals should be submitted in PDF format, 1 PDF file per proposal. File name should include project name and university abbreviation.

Pre-Proposal Meeting Information: / Monday, March 27, 2017 1:00 – 3:00PM
Austin Riverside Campus
118 E. Riverside Dr.
RTI Conference Room, 1st Floor
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Notifying RTI of Intent to Propose: / In order to be notified if additional project information is distributed by TxDOT, you must contact RTI, at (512) 416-4730 or by April 3, 2017, if you plan to propose.
Deadline: / Proposals are due to RTI by 4:00 p.m. Central Time, May 11, 2017. Email submissions should be sent to .

Project Statement 18-67