This past month, the City of Newark, Ohio, shut down the deteriorating Showman Arch Bridge on Cherry Valley Road without notice, disrupting traffic flows and angering much of the community. As a result, the city plans to reopen the crossing with a temporary 160-foot-span bridge.

The Newark, Ohio, City Council approved the necessary resolutions to provide American Rescue Plan funds and waive bids to cover the cost of the 1.5 million dollar emergency project. The temporary solution will sit above the current bridge, resting upon foundations at either end. This will allow travel to resume without further damaging the aging bridge.

U.S. Bridge is responsible for constructing the temporary bridge and will install it at the site in sections starting in early 2023. Upon installation, traffic will resume on the temporary bridge without load limits.

City Engineer Brian Morehead told the press the closure wasn’t due to visible changes in the bridge. Rather, a federal official closed the bridge after a separate evaluation.

A New Bridge for Newark, Ohio

Initially, the 189-year-old bridge carried water, not traffic, with a connecting roadway that potentially houses ancient pottery and arrowheads. Morehead says that digging for artifacts from Native Americans shouldn’t slow down the project. 

A new three-span steel girder bridge will connect Thornwood Crossing to Thornwood Drive. Reddington Road, Thornwood Drive, and a relocated River Road will connect to the bike path with a new roundabout.

The Showman Arch Bridge stood firm despite showing cracks and other signs of decay when ODOT and city engineers started monitoring the bridge 33 years ago. 

Once the permanent structure is up in 2025, the temporary bridge will be taken down and reserved for later construction. Meanwhile, the Showman Arch Bridge will stay open strictly for pedestrian use.

Addressing the Congestion

Unfortunately, the sudden closure of the bridge in Newark, Ohio, has caused backlash and traffic congestion. This presents a serious issue because the absence of a bridge has slowed response times from the fire station on West Main Street and made it difficult for medics to enter Licking Memorial Hospital.

U.S. Bridge understands the community’s frustration, and we are dedicated to providing the City of Newark with a fluid path to ease congestion. The final plans envision a semi-truck-friendly economic development corridor from Ohio 16 to Interstate 70.

U.S. Bridge: Serving Ohio and the World

Based out of Cambridge, Ohio, U.S. Bridge is proud to serve all of the U.S. and the rest of the world. Over 80 years ago, we laid the foundation for providing dependable service and products.

Contact us today to find out what our expert team of professionals can do for you. Or use our exclusive BridgeScope tool to get your project started today! 

Accelerated Bridge Construction Myths

Accelerated bridge construction is growing, but there are still many misconceptions surrounding this construction process. Often these ideas stem out of traditional approaches to bridge construction and don’t take into account changes in technology or updated design and construction practices. We want to help builders dismiss these accelerated bridge construction myths and take advantage of the options for efficient construction available to them.

Here are four of the most common accelerated bridge construction myths that are easy to dispel.

Four Popular Accelerated Bridge Construction Myths:

  1. Accelerated bridge constructions are only for temporary use.
  2. Accelerated bridge constructions are one-size-fits-all.
  3. Timber decks are not a good material for accelerated bridge constructions.
  4. Steel is not competitive for bridges less than 140ft in length.

Myth: Accelerated Bridge Constructions are only for temporary use

Truth: While prefabricated bridges were originally intended for temporary use, they are quickly rising in popularity for permanent construction. Prefabricated bridges are most notably known for their efficient assembly, and they are evolving to fulfill permanent bridge requirements.

The steel bridge members are built in a controlled environment such as U.S. Bridge’s facilities. This not only allows a smoother construction experience process but also ensures ideal conditions for quality permanent bridge construction.

Myth: Accelerated Bridge Constructions are one-size-fits-all

Truth: Prefabricated bridges are custom-built and designed specifically for each project. Thus, they are just as flexible as on-site construction bridges. Our team uses their expertise to design our prefabricated bridges for every setting, from vehicular to pedestrian to utility and private bridges.

As such, there are various options for building prefabricated bridges; builders can use materials such as steel, concrete, asphalt, and even timber. They can also choose the exterior appearance of the bridge. The options are only limited by the project itself such as location and purpose.

Myth: Timber decks are not a good material for prefabricated bridges

Truth: There is a misconception that timber decks do not hold up well for prefabricated bridges. However, the improvements in timber bridge deck design allow this material to be competitive and effective.

These decks are built with glued-laminated wood and directly fastened onto steel stringers. Thus, the use of glulam structural members significantly increases timber bridges span length and carry capacity.

Myth: Steel is not a competitive material for bridges less than 140-feet in length

Truth: Perhaps the most competitive aspect of the use of steel in short span bridges is that it can save builders money and time. Due to its lightweight composition, less heavyweight equipment is required for installation. In addition, with a member of U.S. Bridge’s team to assist in on-site construction, the process can move efficiently.

In general, prefabricated steel bridges compare well against other options when considering factors such as field labor and installation speed and cost. Faster construction time means avoiding delay related losses.

Additionally, when prefabricated bridge constructors receive discounts for purchasing in bulk. Thus, materials are less expensive and can assist with alleviating environmental mitigation costs.

Choose U.S. Bridge for Accelerated Bridge Construction

Ultimately, these myths are ancient history. Prefabricated bridges are very adaptable to fit almost all bridge projects. Accelerated bridge constructions are modular and built in a controlled location such as a factory and installed on-site. Not only do we manufacture the materials needed for your project, but we also send a member of our team to ensure the efficiency of construction.

U.S. Bridge has been engineering and manufacturing bridges for decades. Our experience makes us confident that we can meet the needs of your project and deliver a long-lasting bridge

We recognize and understand that your bridge is a major investment. So, we’re here to help you from the beginning of your project through the end. Contact us for a free quote, or use our exclusive bridge design tool Bridge Scope.