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Over the last two weeks we have placed concrete for the footing, backwall and seat of the abutment on the Eastern side of the bridge. The cheek wall, to retain earth in the transverse direction at the beam seats will be placed next and soon after the abutment will be backfilled until the approach span steel arrives for installation.
On the Western approach the final three micropiles will be driven over the next few days.
Once the pile installations are complete two will be load tested to confirm strength capacity. The area will then be excavated down to footing elevation to form, tie rebar, place the concrete and backfill.
While the contractor finishes the pile work and begins earth work on the Western approach they are also performing structural steel repairs to the drum girder under the truss. Over the Winter structural steel repairs will continue and demolition of the existing truss deck will take place.
Over the last few months off-site mechanical components have been in fabrication for the operating machinery that swings the bridge. I’ve attached a couple pictures for those of you interested. The tapered rollers are almost 60 wheels of solid steel 10 inches wide and 17 inches tall that the bridge rides as it rotates. The pinion shaft is a 5 foot long and connects the operating motor to the gears - it rotates adjacent to the bridge’s rack (gear teeth) located just above the rollers and transmits the force to open and close the bridge.
Several more mechanical components are still being fabricated and the completed mechanical assembly isn’t expected to arrive until late this winter.
Please feel free to call or email me if you’d like to discuss the project in further detail.
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Zach Shapiro, P.E.
Chief Structural Engineer
City of New Haven