Bridge production is currently a very significant portion of the precast/prestressed concrete industry, but it has the potential to become a much greater market force once the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute releases its new Bridge Design Manual.
There has never been a single comprehensive information source for precast concrete bridge design. In the past, individual states, municipalities and design consultants developed their own standards and techniques in conjunction with local producers. Now, however, as state departments of transportation are decentralizing to district operation and turning more work over to design consultants, PCI has found that more questions demand a central source of answers.
Led by principal author Maher Tadros of the University of Nebraska, more than 25 leading experts have contributed. While improved design uniformity from state to state could result, the manual will respond to existing local differences by including region-specific information on an appendix to the Phase I volume.
Phase I consists of eight basic chapters. Phase II, due for a 1998 release, covers more specialized topics such as railroad bridges, pedestrian bridges, design for seismic forces, evaluation of existing bridges and aesthetic considerations.
PCI has chosen a loose-leaf binder format for the 800-page manual, with future updates in mind.
KEYWORDS: bridge, PCI