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Largest Truss Bridge Move Ever
Posted by Tasha Weiss on September 12, 2012 at 4:10 PM.

The Chicago Department of Transportation moved a 400-ft-long, 4.3-million-lb steel truss bridge late last month. The Torrence Avenue truss bridge, which crosses both the Norfolk and Southern Railroads near 130th Street and Torrence Avenue in Chicago, is believed to be the largest truss bridge ever to be moved into place after being assembled off-site.


The project general contractor, Walsh Construction, used four Self-Propelled Mobile Transporters (SPMTs) to relocate the fully assembled truss bridge from its assembly site to its final position on the new bridge piers a few hundred feet away.  


The project is part of the CREATE program – a partnership between the U.S. Department of Transportation, the State of Illinois, City of Chicago, Metra, Amtrak and the nation’s freight railroads – to invest billions in critically needed improvements to increase the efficiency of the region’s passenger and freight rail infrastructure.


“The moving of this new truss bridge is an incredible feat of construction and engineering,” said Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) Commissioner Gabe Klein. “It also demonstrates the strength of the CREATE partnership between government, the railroads and other stakeholders to bring complicated projects like these to fruition to improve the quality of life for Chicago-area communities.”


The goal of the 130th and Torrence grade separation project is to eliminate the two at-grade crossings of the Norfolk Southern tracks with the two roadways to improve the traffic flow of all modes of transport attorrence-avenue-truss-move-video.jpg this complicated intersection.


To see the truss move in action, check out this Youtube video: 


The project is a testament to the successful implementation of using Prefabricated Elements and Systems, a technology employed and supported by FHWA’s Accelerated Bridge Construction initiatives.

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