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Seismic Assessment and Retrofit of Existing Multi-Column Bent Bridges


The main objective of this research was to assess the seismic vulnerability of typical pre-1975 WSDOT prestressed concrete multi-column bent bridges. Additional objectives included determining the influence of soil-structure-interaction on the bridge assessment and evaluating the effects of non-traditional retrofit schemes on the global response of the bridges. Overall this research highlighted the vulnerability of nonmonolithic bridge decks and shear-dominated bridge columns in pre-1975 WSDOT prestressed concrete multi-column bent bridges as well as the importance of including soil-structure-interaction, calibrating the force/displacement characterization of the columns to experimental test data and detailed modeling of the bridges such as expansion joint/girder interaction. In the end, the seismic assessment of bridges is a cost/efficiency issue. Each bridge is different, therefore, investing in improved analyses up front will enable an efficient use of the limited funds for bridge improvement, resulting in a significant savings overall.

  • Date Published: February, 2007
  • Publication Number: WA-RD 639.1
  • Last Modified: April 3, 2007
  • Author: Cole C. McDaniel.
  • Originator: Washington State University. Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering.
  • # of Pages: 70 p., 2,190 KB (PDF)
  • Subject: Prestressed concrete bridges, Bridge decks, Columns, Girders, Seismicity, Soil structure, Earthquake resistant design, Retrofitting, Costs.
  • Keywords: WSDOT, prestressed concrete, multi-column bent,bridges,seismic assessment, retrofit.
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This abstract was last modified January 26, 2009