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I-64 Kanawha River Bridge Steel Girder Alternative

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Interstate 64 is West Virginia’s eastbound-westbound transportation life line. It crosses the Kanawha River four times in the state capital of Charleston alone. At one such location, the Division of Highways called for the construction of a new bridge to increase traffic capacity and improve traveler safety. But there was an added challenge: the design of the new bridge had to be completed without using a single pier in the Kanawha River. 
Modjeski and Masters studied several steel alternatives, including box girder, truss, and tied arch bridge types. We then developed a steel bridge alternatives matrix to evaluate cost, aesthetics, and constructability. Working with the Division of Highways, our engineers helped identify the preferred steel alternative – a three-span continuous steel box-beam girder bridge. To span the river, our technical experts engineered a design featuring a record-setting 760-ft. dual box girder main span. Great in scale, yet elegant in form, the haunched girder design measured over 30-ft deep at the pier tops and 15-ft at the main span centerline. In 2007, despite lower bid results for the concrete alternative, this girder bridge design captured the West Virginia Division of Highways Engineering Excellence Award for the Large Bridge Category. 
Bridge Geometry
Length of Main Span 760 Feet
Curved Side Spans 460 Feet and 540 Feet
Total Project Length 3,000 Feet (including approaches)
Number of Lanes on Structure Five Design Lanes (64 Feet wide)