Composite Advantage's FRP Pedestrian Bridge Deck Improves Safety

11 September 2012

Composite Advantage’s (CA) FiberSPAN Fibre Reinforced Polymer bridge deck product was installed on a new 3-span steel superstructure at Wolf Creek National Park near Vienna, Virginia, US.

According to CA, the new pedestrian bridge was designed to connect two main facilities at the Wolf Trap Performing Arts Center and provide safe crossing over the 10-lane Dulles Access and Toll Road.  It says the Barnes and Filene Center have traditionally been separated by a narrow road with a crumbling sidewalk raising safety concerns for the nearly 500,000 visitors to Wolf Creek National Park each season. Steel trusses fitted with the 8,000 sq. ft. composite bridge deck will be able to accommodate Wolf Trap patrons, cyclists and pedestrians as well as residents that will need access to the Metro stations currently under construction at Tysons Corner.

CA explains that the FRP bridge deck was manufactured with its sandwich construction which employs fiberglass top and bottom skins and closely-spaced internal webs that function like a series of I-beams.  CA moulded the 8.3 ft. by 15.5 ft. panels with curbs and an epoxy aggregate non-slip coating.  The deck colour was coordinated with the truss coating. 

CA says its lightweight prefabricated panels accommodate the growing trend for night-time construction which minimizes the impact of construction operations on the public.  The FRP decking was installed on each truss span adjacent to the bridge site.  The light weight of the FRP deck enabled the fully assembled truss span to be lifted into place over the highway.  The erection of each span required just 15 minutes of road closure.  Each bridge span was lifted into place on three consecutive nights with the largest span measuring 170 sq. ft. and weighing 140,000 lbs.

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