Pearl Harbor Memorial Bridge

Location New Haven, Connecticut

Owner Connecticut Department of Transportation

Client Connecticut Department of Transportation

Pearl Harbor Memorial Bridge Replacement

  • Bridge Replacement
  • Construction Engineering Management
  • Construction Engineering Inspection
  • Quality Control and Assurance
  • Progress Payments
  • Project Schedule Monitoring
  • Materials Testing
  • Environmental Compliance Monitoring
  • Erosion/Sediment Mitigation
  • Utility Coordination
  • Construction Change Order Coordination
  • Bridge Rehabilitation
  • Wetland Mitigation
  • Constructability Review
  • Construction Claims Analysis
  • Contractor Compliance Monitoring
  • Lighting Inspection

The Connecticut Department of Transportation (ConnDOT) I-95 New Haven Harbor Crossing Improvement Program is effecting extensive multimodal improvements on I-95 and the surrounding road network through New Haven. The centerpiece of the program is the replacement of the existing Pearl Harbor Memorial (Q) Bridge with a new 10-lane signature structure—the first vehicular extradosed cable-stayed bridge in the United States and, with stunning design and lighting, a distinctive landmark for the New Haven skyline.
The new Q-Bridge was split into three contracts for construction. Lochner was selected to provide construction engineering and inspection services for all three contracts, making the firm responsible for the oversight of a more than half-billion dollar construction program.

Sanitary Sewer Reconstruction
This project relocated twin sanitary sewer force mains that ran beneath the Quinnipiac River in the New Haven Harbor. The existing pipes would have been in conflict with the foundation of a temporary work trestle needed to construct the new Q-Bridge and, therefore, had to be moved before bridge construction could begin. Lochner oversaw the installation of two new 42-inch HDPE pipes, each approximately 1,900 feet in length, to the north of the construction site. To accelerate construction and minimize environmental impacts, horizontal directional drilling was used to place the pipes under the river. Drilling commenced with a 6-inch pilot hole from the west side of the river. The diameter was gradually increased in 6- to 12-inch increments until it reached 60 inches. The locations of the holes on the east side, after drilling, were accurate to within a few feet. The depth of the pipes reached up to 75 feet below the river bottom. Bentonite was used to maintain the integrity of the holes during this process. The pipes were fused together on the west side of the river in 400- to 450-foot sections that could be floated on the river. All sections were pulled across the river in two continuous 30-hour shifts—one shift per pipe. After the pipes were in place under the river, new ductile iron pipe was connected at the approaches on each end. Once the new pipes were active, the old pipes were filled with concrete and abandoned in place.

Main-Span Pier Foundations and I-95 NB Approach Structures
The main span foundations for the new northbound Q-Bridge and the west approach structures for I-95 NB were constructed “offline” because they were outside the existing highway footprint. Temporary work trestles were constructed on each side of the shipping channel to facilitate the construction of the main span. The trestle for the northbound bridge had to remain in place for the next contract and needed to handle the construction loads for both contracts. The trestle was founded on 24-inch pipe piles, driven into bedrock. Steel beams with timber decking comprised the superstructure, with concrete decking and counterweights used in crane turning and heavy-pick areas.

The four main-span foundations, constructed within the Quinnipiac River, adjacent to its navigable waterway, were founded on 8-foot diameter drilled shafts, ranging from 35 to 200 feet in length, with 10- to 30-foot rock sockets. The approach structures included I-95 NB connections to the new bridge, as well as ramps to I-95 NB from Route 34 EB, I-91 SB, and Wooster Street. The approach piers were founded on square precast prestressed concrete friction piles of 16- to 20-inch diameter and up to 120 feet in length. The approach superstructures—five spans of the I-95 approach and the nine-span Ramp I—were all steel plate girders.

Lochner also oversaw the reconstruction of several local roads in this contract: Hamilton Street, East Street, and Water Street on the west shore of the river and Forbes Avenue and Waterfront Street on the east shore. Roadway, drainage, and traffic signal improvements were also included. This project was completed under budget, one month ahead of schedule. All project milestones were met or exceeded.

Replacement of the Pearl Harbor Memorial (Q) Bridge
In the largest single construction contract ever awarded by ConnDOT, Lochner is providing construction engineering and inspection services for the new 4,600-foot, 23-span Q-Bridge. The extradosed cable-stayed main span has a cast-in-place concrete superstructure that uses balanced cantilever construction, and the bridge’s maximum span over the Quinnipiac River’s navigable channel is about 515 feet. The bridge construction includes two anchor piers and two tower piers, up to 140 feet above the river, as well as 128 stay cables that consist of 15-mm strands, individually sheathed in HDPE stay pipes, and LED aesthetic and memorial lighting. The approach spans are comprised of steel plate girders with a concrete deck. Latex modified concrete is used as a wearing surface on all spans for skid resistance and longer service life for the structure. Due to a widely varying depth of bedrock, the west approach spans are founded on precast concrete friction piles, and the main span and east approach spans are founded on end-bearing drilled shafts.

The demolition of the existing bridge was a challenging aspect of the project and had to be performed in accordance with stringent environmental permit requirements issued by federal and state agencies, such as U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. Lochner was also in frequent communication with the U.S. Coast Guard, as channel closures were necessary for some construction and demolition operations. Close coordination was also needed with contractors from adjacent projects being constructed concurrently and with P&W Railroad in relation to work performed adjacent to, and over, an active freight line.

Other major components of this complex project—all overseen by Lochner inspectors—included the construction of tower and anchor piers and trestles in the water, the installation and testing of piles and shafts, the stressing of the stay cables, the geometry control associated with balanced cantilever construction, longitudinal and transverse post-tensioning, and the placement of concrete deck and the latex modified concrete wearing surface, all within an environmentally sensitive and regulated area.

The bridge’s northbound lanes were opened to I-95 northbound traffic in June 2012 and to southbound traffic in July 2013. The existing bridge was then demolished, and construction of the new southbound bridge began in its footprint. The southbound bridge was opened to four lanes of traffic in September 2015. Prior to opening to traffic, a community celebration and dedication ceremony was held on top of the bridge with over 9,000 people in attendance.

Pearl Harbor Memorial Bridge – Main Span Pier Foundations & I-95 NB Approach Structures

  • Field Engineering and Inspection

The Connecticut Department of Transportation (ConnDOT) has launched an extensive multi-modal transportation improvement program for the I-95 New Haven Harbor Crossing Corridor. A major component of the program is the replacement of the existing Pearl Harbor Memorial (Q) Bridge with a new, 10-lane, signature structure. The new structure will comprise 23 spans and measure more than 4,600 feet in length. The 525-foot main span will become one of the first extradosed, cable-stayed bridges in the country.

Due to its size and scale, construction of the new Q-Bridge was split into two contracts. Contract B for the full construction of the new bridge and Contract B1 for the construction of the bridge’s main span pier foundations and the I-95 northbound approach structures, which were constructed in advance of Contract B. Contract B1 was the second construction contract for this new bridge, after the horizontal directional drilling of twin Greater New Haven Water Pollution Control Authority (GNHWPCA) force mains. Lochner was selected to provide construction engineering and inspection services for all noted contracts.

Lochner is overseeing all aspects of construction in the $137 million B1 contract. Foundation construction included multi-span mainline and ramp approach structures and four main span foundations within the Quinnipiac River’s navigable waterway. Many of the approach girders are cruved to match the horizontal alignment of the roadway. Approach structures included ramps to I-95 Northbound from Route 34 Eastbound, I-91 Southbound and Wooster Street, as well as mainline I-95 Northbound connections to te new Pearl Harbor Memorial Bridge. Foundations adjacent to the navigable waterway were constructed within marine enclosures with work performed from barges and work trestles.

The approach piers are founded on square precast prestressed concrete friction piles, 16-, 18- and 20-inch diameter and ranging from 90′-120′ long. The main span piers are founded on 8 foot drilled shafts ranging from 35- to 200-feet long with 10- to 30-foot rock sockets. The approach superstructures are all steel plate girders.

The contractor’s scope of work also encompassed local road reconstruction for Hamilton Street, East Street and Water Street located on the west short of the Quinnipic River and Forbes Avenue and Waterfront Street located on the east shore. Work included roadway, drainage, illumination and traffic signal improvements.

Environmental permits from CTDEEP, US Army Corps of Engineers, and US Coast Guard had special conditions and restrictions that were stricyly adhered to, especially for work in and around the river. Work included handling, transport and disposal of contaminated soils.

This project required coordination with multiple federal, state and local agencies; as well as with adjacent I-95 corridor project representatives. Construction took place from 2008-2011. Work under this contract was completed one month ahead of schedule and under budget. All project milestones were met or exceeded.

Pearl Harbor Memorial Bridge – Sanitary Sewer Relocation

  • Utility Engineering

Under its I-95 New Haven Harbor Crossing Corridor Improvement Program, the Connecticut Department of Transportation (ConnDOT) is effecting extensive multi-modal transportation improvements along 7.2 miles of I-95. The signature component of this program is the construction of a new Pearl Harbor Memorial (Q) Bridge. The new, 4,600-foot, 23-span structure will carry 10 lanes of I-95 traffic over the Quinnipiac River. The 525-foot main span will be one of the first extradosed, cable-stayed bridges constructed in the US.

Construction of the bridge will rely in large part on the erection of temporary work trestles at various points across the river. The trestle north of the bridge required a pile-supported foundation. The foundation would directly conflict with existing sanitary sewer force mains beneath the harbor. The twin force mains in question, owned and operated by the Greater New Haven Water Pollution Control Authority, are therefore being relocated prior to the commencement of the main bridge construction.

Lochner has been selected to provide construction management services for this $20 million sanitary sewer relocation. In this role, Lochner is overseeing all aspects of the construction operation. Two new, 42-inch pipes, each approximately 1,800 feet in length, are being installed beneath the harbor, north of the bridge construction site. To minimize environmental impacts to the Quinnipiac River, horizontal directional drilling is being used to install the new pipes beneath the riverbed. Drilling begins with the establishment of a pilot hole, six inches in diameter. This is incrementally increased through a number of reaming passes until it reaches the 60 inches required for pipe installation. A considerable challenge for the drilling operations in this project is that the pipes must be placed on a sharply curved alignment.

Once the reaming process is complete, the two high-density polyethylene pipes will be installed. The pipes are each comprised of four 450-foot sections. Each section will be fusion-welded to the preceding section, pressure tested, and documented with a video camera inspection before being pulled through the shaft. The pipes will be connected at both ends to the main sanitary system’s ductile iron pipes. Once the new force mains are in full operation, the existing pipes will be filled and abandoned.

Throughout the drilling operations, a major consideration for both Lochner and the contractor has been the minimization of impacts to the Quinnipiac River. Horizontal directional drilling requires that a mixture of mud, water, and bentonite be pumped into the hole to maintain its shape. It is key to Lochner’s inspection role to ensure that the chance of this material making its way through fissures to the river bottom, and contaminating the waterway, is minimized by regulating the pumping speed.

This 16-month project is scheduled for completion in spring 2009.

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