About the research
The objective of this project will be to develop a series of design, contracting and construction options and strategies for cost-competitive (initial and life cycle costs), sustainable timber bridges in Minnesota that meet American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) HL-93 load requirements and load and resistance factor design (LRFD) bridge design specifications.
The project will incorporate standard plans for timber bridge superstructures that are currently under development by the USDA Forest Service. These plans will be evaluated and modified for Minnesota and, when coupled with best inspection and maintenance procedures, provide new opportunities for constructing innovative, long-lasting, and cost-competitive timber bridges.
Finally, several bridge construction projects will be identified with partner counties that will use the developed plans, allowing the project team to assess and validate the true initial costs of construction, predict lifecycle costs, and complete a lifecycle assessment for these bridges.