Bridge collapse

#62
We benighted sons of Liberty have become so thoroughly conditioned to long, leisurely, multiphasic construction projects that we'll probably wait silently for the authorities to repair/replace the I-5 bridge at their convenience. But as a useful mental exercise, ask yourselves: how long , at a minimum, should it take?

In the early days of World War II, the U.S. government and Army realized that a workable road was needed from the U.S. to Alaska, for urgent reasons of military necessity. The terrain to be crossed was some of the most rugged in the world, including raging streams of all sizes, and the highway was just one of many urgent priorities. The highway was approved on February 6, 1942. The Alaska Highway, aka Al-Can Hwy., was built from Dawson Creek, B.C. to Delta Junction, Alaska, a distance of 1,700 miles. (It was later expanded and paved.) The highway was completed on October 28, 1942. Let's see, that's how many days?

Governor, the clock is ticking.
 

KerryS

Ignored Member
#64
Nooksak, I think every environmental law of the world was pushed aside during the Alcan highway construction. Also this was a barely passable road when completed that required constant maintenance and reconstruction from the day it opened. Yes, they got it done but at a huge environmental cost and what you had was a bulldozer path that you weren't driving your Honda Civic over it or even your run of the mill SUV.
 
#65
That's understood, Kerry. What they needed was a goat path that a military truck could negotiate, but they needed it immediately. My point has to do with speed, what's possible when speed is made a top priority. Construction on the Alaska Hwy. began five days after authorization.
 

FT

Active Member
#68
Wayne,

The speed of replacement, as badly as I think that should be first priority for this bridge span, is likely going to be secondary to the "need to do an environmental study to make sure removing the collapsed span won't cause more damage to the river before it is removed from the river, and then of course that replacing the collapsed span with new span doesn't also damage the river". Then of course we need to have an environmental study to make sure the replacement span won't cause any further harm to the river before any work can begin on replacing the collapsed span. Afterall, isn't it more important to have the studies on the damage removing the collapsed span and the potential damage the replacement span will or might cause than to get the bridge fixed and traffic moving (which includes all the commercial traffic and its economic impact on the state) again?

Personally, I think the best course of action is to send the civil engineers out to make sure none of the other spans have been damaged by that overheight truck and once that is done, either fix any damage, or if there was no damage to the other spans, get the collapsed span out of the river and get a replacement span built and in place post haste. But of course I suppose I'm not being environmentally responsible in thinking that replacing the collapsed span with a new one will have minimal environmental impact.
 
#69
I am a WSDOT employee, I am a technician not an Engineer. That being said I am an inspector during construction projects. I have been involved with a few Emergency projects on the East side of the
mountains. The Emergency projects I have been involved with were done with an urgency to get the work done in a timely fashion involving work around the clock if necessary. Also Safety is a top priority for the public and the workers. So I ask that you give the contractor's and the state workers some room to prove themselves. I know that unless I have walked in another's shoe's I don't have anything but my opinion ...
not necessarily the facts.
Kelly Michelsen
 

gbeeman

Active Member
#72
I am a WSDOT employee, I am a technician not an Engineer. That being said I am an inspector during construction projects. I have been involved with a few Emergency projects on the East side of the
mountains. The Emergency projects I have been involved with were done with an urgency to get the work done in a timely fashion involving work around the clock if necessary. Also Safety is a top priority for the public and the workers. So I ask that you give the contractor's and the state workers some room to prove themselves. I know that unless I have walked in another's shoe's I don't have anything but my opinion ...
not necessarily the facts.
Kelly Michelsen
 

FinLuver

Active Member
#74
NPR is reporting this morning that the bridge was built in the mid-1950s from a design that's nearly a century old. In an interview, one official suggested a replacement bridge could take 2-3 years to build.

K
Considering how long it takes 'em to build bridges down in Oregon; I'd say that's a pretty good time assessment.
 
#75
I believe the disagreement on funding the Columbia bridge connecting Vancouver and Portland is that the Oregon plan is for the bridge to include a light rail line so people on the Washington side can connect with Portland's excellent transit system.

The McCleary decision by the Washington Supreme Court mandates that the state cough up at least $1B to make up for historically underfunding K-12 education. Make no mistake, this is NOT some optional or frivolous expense that can be deferred or ignored.

The state's revenue is based on taxes and fees and thanks to the economy, all income forecasts for the foreseeable future are much more modest than anyone hoped for, making the hurt from the McCleary decision all the more painful. The additional cost for the Oregon version of the Columbia bridge is an expense that's probably not likely to be approved as is.

K
These are the kind of projects we need to get the economy going. The construction industry is experiencing 16%+ unemployment right now, we don't make much anymore so we better build. If you put $$ in construction workers pockets, they spend it. WAGES drive demand and DEMAND drives the economy. Look @ Eisenhower and the interstate highway system, the biggest public works project since the depression. Pay down the debt from ww2, and opened up commerce all over hell and now we're to cheap to maintain it. A damn shame it is.