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Bridge Rehabilitation Financial Model And Case Study

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.108.1 - 4.108.7

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Halvard E. Nystrom

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1639

Bridge Rehabilitation Financial Model and Case Study

Halvard E. Nystrom University of Missouri – Rolla


This article describes a financial model to identify the tangible and intangible costs and benefits associated with externally bonded fiber reinforced polymer (FRP) reinforcement of bridges. It is applied to the analysis of bridge G270 located on Route 32 in Iron county, Missouri, but also applies an approach that can be used with other bridges and structures. This research model represents an approach to address major issues in order to assist in the decision whether or not to rehabilitate specific bridges. Many of these issues are intangible, in that they do not lend themselves to exact or certain measurement. However, they can be analyzed and estimated so that the underlying assumptions are explicitly stated and better understood. This article includes a discussion of the approach that was selected for this model, a description of the methods used to estimate the costs and benefits, and the results and conclusions based on these estimates.


The objective of this study is to develop methods and tools that clarify the costs and benefits of rehabilitating bridges in order to decide whether to treat specific bridges and develop an effective rehabilitation policy. Many of the impacts of this decision are intangible, in that they do not lend themselves to exact or certain measurement. What is the value of having a stronger bridge? Does it make sense to extend the life of an old bridge? What is the value of having a bridge that can better withstand earthquakes?

Fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) material systems, composed of fibers embedded in polymeric matrix, provide additional load-bearing capabilities to structures. These material systems include fiberglass, carbon fiber or other synthetic fibers such as Kevlar that are attached to the underlying structure with epoxy or other polymeric matrix. These materials were originally developed for aircraft applications and their application with reinforced concrete structures such as bridges is a relatively new. In addition to adding load-carrying capability, it can make the structure usable after major shocks such as after earthquakes since it is not brittle, and they are also corrosion resistant.

In the application of FRP to bridge rehabilitation there are two major benefits. Because of the additional strength, shock tolerance and weathering behavior, it reduces the risk of damage over time compared to its original condition with a likely reduction of service disruption costs. It also

Nystrom, H. E. (1999, June), Bridge Rehabilitation Financial Model And Case Study Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina. https://Peer.Asee.Org/7918

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