CIRCE - Bridges and aqueducts

This section of the Conservation Information Resource for Civil Engineers (CIRCE) provides information and guidance for civil engineers undertaking conservation, restoration and extending the life of existing bridges and aqueducts.

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Each sub-section provides links to information and guidance regarding bridges constructed of different materials, and also different bridge types, including aqueducts. These are arranged under four headings: General guidance; Inspection, assessment and appraisal; Remediation, repair and conservation; Case studies. Additional links may also be found in the section of CIRCE dealing with particular construction materials, e.g. Masonry or Iron and Steel.

Simply choose the relevant bridge type and begin exploring our resources.

All bridges

Forth Bridge
The Forth Railway Bridge, Photo: Bas Meijer

The following guidance is of relevance to any type of bridge.

Key: Click on the resource title to get more information.

Where content displays the direct icon, the information is accessible directly from the link. Otherwise the link provides full details of the resource and where it can be obtained.

General guidance

Conservation of Bridges: A Guide to Good Practice by Graham Tilly, 2002 [416 pp] (Available in part via Google Books)

Assessment of viaducts and bridges (listed structures and ancient monuments) by R Mills, ICE 1989 [14 pp]

The Conservation of Highway Structures (Design Manual for Roads and Bridges: Volume 3 Highway Structures: Inspection and Maintenance. Section 2 Maintenance. Part 4) [26 pp]direct

Bridge rehabilitation in the UK: review of the current programme and preparing for the next, ICE Conference 2000 [22 papers]

Bridge Design, Construction and Maintenance, ICE Conference 2007 [63 papers]

Extending the Service Life of Bridges using CFRP Laminates and Continuous Decks by Adel El-Safty, 2008 [10 pp]

International Engineering History and Heritage: Improving Bridges to ASCE's 150th Anniversary. Proceedings of the Third National Congress on Civil Engineering History and Heritage, Houston, Texas, ASCE, 2001 [500 pp]

Seismic bridge design and retrofit - structural solutions, fib Bulletin No. 39, 2007 [300 pp]

Proportionality of interventions to restore structural safety of existing bridges by E. Brühwiler ICASP'11,. 2011 [7 pp] direct

London Bridges Engineering Group (LoBEG): Technical advice documents [web pages; registration required]

London Bridges Engineering Group – useful links [web pages] direct

Rational approach for the management of a medium size bridge stock by E. Brühwiler 2008 [8 pp] direct

Identifying bridges

Researching the history of bridges (web pages) direct

Over 100 UK bridges built before 1915 in the appendix to: Conservation of Bridges: A Guide to Good Practice by Graham Tilly, 2002 [416 pp] (Available in part via Google Books)

Scotland's Oldest Bridges: a map-based catalogue (web pages)

Documenting Historic Bridges by Eric DeLony, 2001 [14 pp]

A Guide to the Research and Documentation of Local Texas Bridges by the Texas Department of Transportation, 2013 [69 pp] direct

Inspection, assessment and appraisal

Bridge Inspection and Rehabilitation: A Practical Guide by Parsons Brinckerhoff, 1992 [312 pp]

Non-destructive Investigation of Standing Structures by Historic Scotland, 2001 [66pp] direct

Structural Analysis of Historic Construction: Preserving Safety and Significance by Dina D'Ayala et al., Conference, 2008 [1588 pp] (Available in part via Google Books)

Updating of traffic loads on existing bridges by Eugen Brühwiler & Jean-Paul Lebet, IABSE 2009 [9 pp] direct

Consideration of dynamic traffic action effects on existing bridges at ultimate limit state by E. Brühwiler & A. Herwig 2008 [8 pp] direct

Risk-based approach to the determination of optimal interventions for bridges affected by multiple hazards by B. Adey, R. Hajdin & E. Brühwiler 2003 [10 pp] direct

Remediation, repair and conservation

Bridge Management Five, ICE Conference 2005 [84 papers]

Maintaining, Refurbishing and Strengthening Bridges by O Riches et al. ICE 2005 [8 pp]

Extending fatigue life of bridges beyond 100 years by using monitored data by Eugen Brühwiler, 2014 [15 pp]

Extending the Life of Bridges by B C Brown et al. (eds), ASTM conference, 1990 [132 pp] (Available in part via Google Books)

Cast-on site UHPFRC for improvement of existing structures - achievements over the last 10 years in practice and research by E. Denarié and E. Brühwiler. 2015 [9 pp] direct

Ultra-high performance fiber reinforced concrete for strengthening and protecting bridge deck slabs by M. Bastien Masse and E. Brühwiler (IABMAS) 2014 [7 pp] direct

Case studies

London Bridges Engineering Group (LoBEG): Project Profiles [web pages; registration required]

Extending the service life of Swiss bridges of cultural value by Eugen Brühwiler, ICE 2012 [6 pp] direct

Strengthening the Chillon viaducts deck slabs with reinforced UHPFRC by E. Brühwiler and M. Bastien Masse, IABSE 2015 [8 pp] direct

 

Masonry bridges

Clare College Bridge
Clare College Bridge, Cambridge, Photo: Bill Addis

The following guidance is specifically relevant to masonry bridges.

Key: Click on the resource title to get more information.

Where content displays the direct icon, the information is accessible directly from the link. Otherwise the link provides full details of the resource and where it can be obtained.

General guidance

Restoration of historic masonry bridges by A. Slaughter, 2001 [8 pp]

Restoration of masonry arch bridges by W. Wilmers, ICE 2012 [12 pp]

A spatial view of the flow of force in masonry bridges by Bill Harvey, ICE 2013 [8 pp]

Stiffness and damage in masonry bridges by Bill Harvey, ICE 2012 [8 pp]

Inspection, assessment and appraisal

Masonry arch bridges: Condition appraisal and remedial treatment by L. McKibbins et al., CIRIA, 2006 [342 pp]

Masonry arch bridges: Condition appraisal and remedial treatment by L. McKibbins et al., CIRIA, 2006. Contents only [28 pp] Direct

Masonry arch bridges: condition appraisal and remedial treatment. Powerpoint presentation 2003 [28 pp] Direct

A new masonry arch bridge assessment strategy by C. Melbourne et al., ICE 2007 [7 pp]

Rationalising assessment approaches for masonry arch bridges by N Gibbons et al. ICE 2012 [16 pp]

Experimentally-based assessment of masonry arch bridges by P. J. Fanning et al, ICE 2003 [8 pp]

Drystone retaining walls and their modifications: condition appraisal and remedial treatment by M. O'Reilly et al., CIRIA, 2009 [200 pp]

Remediation, repair and conservation

A guide to repair and strengthening of masonry arch bridges by J. Page, Transport Research Laboratory, 1996 [37 pp]

Inventory of repairing and strengthening techniques for masonry arch bridges by T. Beuerman, Masters Thesis, 2009 [119 pp] Direct

Repair mortars for masonry bridges by S. Pavía, 2006 [8 pp] Direct

Modelling of repair techniques for masonry arch bridges by Mahmoud Miri (PhD thesis), 2005 [293 pp] Direct

Behaviour of masonry arch bridge repaired using fibre-reinforced polymer composites by Y. Tao et al., 2011 [35 pp] Direct

Strengthening and rehabilitation of civil infrastructures using fibre reinforced polymer (FRP) composites by L. Hollaway et al. (eds), conference, 2008 [416 pp]

Case studies

Two masonry bridges: 1. Clare College Bridge by J. Heyman et al. ICE, 1972 [14 pp]

Two masonry bridges: 2. Telford`s bridge at Over by J. Heyman et al. ICE, 1972 [12 pp]

Calva Bridge, Workington (1841) by Bill Harvey, 2011 [7 pp] Direct

Widening, strengthening and repair of masonry bridge in Ponteceso, Galicia, Spain by J. León et al., 2004 [10 pp] Direct

Conservation of Laigh Milton [1865 railway] Viaduct, Ayrshire by R A Paxton, ICE 1998 [13 pp]

Iron and steel bridges

Steel bridge, Merida Spain
The Iron Bridge, Merida, Spain  Photo: Pedro Plasencia-Lozano

The following guidance is of specific relevance to iron and steel bridges.

Key: Click on the resource title to get more information.

Where content displays the direct icon, the information is accessible directly from the link. Otherwise the link provides full details of the resource and where it can be obtained.

General guidance

Scottish iron structures: Guide for Practioners, Historic Scotland, 2006 [222 pp] direct

Steel Bridge Strengthening: A study of assessment and strengthening experience and identification of solutions by I Kennedy-Reid et al. 2001 [152 pp]

Repair and maintenance of listed cast and wrought iron bridges by W. R. Preston, ICE 1989 [14 pp]

Restoration of Cast and Wrought Iron Bridges by F. Griggs, 2001 [11 pp]

Inspection, assessment and appraisal

Iron and steel bridges: Condition appraisal and remedial treatment by G. Tilly et al., 2015 [258 pp]

Remediation, repair and conservation

Iron and steel bridges: Condition appraisal and remedial treatment by G Tilly et al. , 2015 [258 pp]

FRP composites: Life Extension and Strengthening of Metallic Structures: ICE Design and Practice Guide by S S J Moy (ed.), 2001 [72 pp]

Case studies

Cast iron bridges

Westminster Bridge, London, Structural History, 1998 (web pages) direct

The refurbishment of Westminster Bridge: Bridge strengthening by J. Crossin et al., IStructE, 1998 [7 pp]

Restoration of cast-iron bridge (1813) at Marple, Cheshire (web pages) direct

Wrought iron and steel bridges

The Forth Bridge gained UNESCO Workd Heritage listing in 2015 direct

Forth Bridge: the restoration challenge by D Sooman et al., ICE 2015 [13 pp]

Restoring Sutton Weaver Swing Bridge, Cheshire by Canal & River Trust 2014 (web pages)

Evaluation and repair of wrough iron and steel structures in Indiana by M. Bowman et al., 2004 [240 pp] direct

Rehabilitation of two 1890s metal truss bridges by J. Pullaro, 2001 [9 pp]

Reinforced-concrete bridges

Hammersmith flyover
Hammersmith Flyover, London, Photo: Kelly Group

The following guidance is of specific relevance to reinforced-concrete bridges.

Key: Click on the resource title to get more information.

Where content displays the direct icon, the information is accessible directly from the link. Otherwise the link provides full details of the resource and where it can be obtained.

General guidance

Concrete bridge strengthening and repair by I Reid, 2009 [128 pp]

Real strength and robustness of reinforced concrete structures by A. E. Long et al., ICE 1989 [12 pp]

Management, maintenance and strengthening of concrete structures, fib Bulletin No. 17, 2002 [180 pp]

Design of rehabilitation and refurbishment of existing r.c. bridges by C Modena et al., 2007 [9 pp]

Concrete Bridge Development Group – many useful publications; registration required.

Inspection, assessment and appraisal

Strategies for Testing and Assessment of Concrete Structures affected by Reinforcement Corrosion, CEB Bulletin No. 243, 1998 [184 pp]

Assessment of Concrete Bridges, Concrete Bridge Development Group, Technical Guide TG9, 2007 [173 pp]

Assessment of reinforced and prestressed concrete bridges, IStructE, 1988 [49 pp]

Guide to Testing and Monitoring the Durability of Concrete Structures, Concrete Bridge Development Group, Technical Guide TG2, 2002 [113 pp]

Condition control and assessment of reinforced concrete structures exposed to corrosive environments (carbonation/chlorides), fib Bulletin No. 59, 2011 [80 pp]

Monitoring and safety evaluation of existing concrete structures, fib Bulletin No. 22, 2003 [304 pp]

Assessment of Concrete Structures and Design Procedures for Upgrading (Redesign), CEB Bulletin No. 162, 1983 [? pp]

Inspection and Maintenance of Reinforced and Prestressed Concrete Structures by CEB / FIP, 1986 [8 pp]

The use of monitored data in the verification of structural and fatigue safety of existing post-tensioned concrete highway bridges by M. A. Treacy. Doctoral thesis EPFL No. 6207, 2014. On-line request required. direct

Reinforced concrete bridges under increased railway traffic loads: fatigue behaviour and safety measures by A. Herwig. Doctoral thesis, EPFL, No. 4010 (2008) [142 pp] direct

Remediation, repair and conservation

Enhancing the Capacity of Concrete Bridges, Concrete Bridge Development Group, Technical Guide TG10, 2008 [64 pp]

Extending Performance of Concrete Structures by R K Dhir et al. (eds), 1999 [283 pp]

Repair of concrete bridges: A TRL state-of-the-art report by G. P. Mallett, 1994 [194 pp]

Maintenance of prestressed concrete structures: Guide to good practice, fip Report, 1978 [14 pp]

Management of deteriorating concrete structures by G. Somerville, 2008 [344 pp]

Strengthening using FRP

Guide for the design and construction of externally bonded FRP systems for stengthening existing structures - Materials, RC and PC structures, masonry structures, Italian National Research Council, 2004 [154 pp] direct

Externally bonded FRP reinforcement for RC structures, fib Bulletin No. 14, 2001 [138 pp]

Design guidance for strengthening concrete structures using fibre composite materials by the Concrete Society, 2013 [187 pp]

Guide for the Design and Construction of Externally Bonded FRP Systems for Strengthening Concrete Structures by American Concrete Institute, 2008 [80 pp]

FRP-strengthened RC Structures by J. Teng et al., 2001 [266 pp]

Reinforcing Concrete Structures with Fibre Reinforced Polymers Design Manual No. 3, Canadian Network of Centres of Excellence on Intelligent Sensing for Innovative Structures 2007 [151 pp] direct

Case studies

Restoration of a [1910] Concrete Arch Railroad Bridge [in New York] by Tony Papile, 2001 [8 pp]

Strengthening the Chillon viaducts deck slabs with reinforced UHPFRC by E. Brühwiler and M. Bastien Masse, IABSE 2015 [8 pp] direct

Timber bridges

Hohe Brucke, Austria
Hohe Brucke, St. Georgenberg near Innsbruck, Austria, Photo: Bill Addis

The following guidance is of specific relevance to timber bridges.

Key: Click on the resource title to get more information.

Where content displays the direct icon, the information is accessible directly from the link. Otherwise the link provides full details of the resource and where it can be obtained.

General guidance

Timber bridge maintenance manual, Queensland Government, 2005 direct

Timber bridges: Design, construction, inspection, and maintenance: Chapter 14: Maintenance and rehabilitation of timber bridges by M. Ritter, 1990 [30 pp] direct

Restoration of Historic Wooden Bridges by H. Rogers et al., 2001 [8 pp]

Inspection, assessment and appraisal

Non-destructive evaluation techniques for timber bridges, by R. Emerson, World Conference on Timber Engineering, 1998 [on-line version] direct

Non-destructive testing of large bridge timbers by R. Emerson et al., 1999 [11 pp] direct

Timber bridge maintenance manual. Appendix D: non-destructive testing, Queensland Government, 2005 [27 pp] direct

Eleventh international symposium on non-destructive testing of wood, Index to Proceedings, 1998 [2 pp] direct

Condition assessment of timber bridges 1. Evaluation of micro-drilling resistance tool by B. Brashaw et al., 2005 [11 pp] direct

Condition assessment of timber bridges 2. Evaluation of several stress-wave tools by B. Brashaw et al., 2005 [14 pp] direct

Remediation, repair and conservation

Timber Bridges: Design, construction, inspection, and maintenance: Chapter 14: Maintenance and rehabilitation Of timber bridges by M. Ritter, 1990 [30 pp] direct

Extending service life of timber bridges with preservatives by J. Wacker et al., 2003 [10 pp] direct

Extending the life of hardwood timber bridges in Australia, Dan Tigley, Wood Research and Development, 2014 [44 p] direct

Suspension and cable-stayed bridges

Severn Crossing
Second Severn Crossing, near Gloucester, UK, Photo: Jongleur100

The following guidance is of specific relevance to suspension and cable-stayed bridges.

Key: Click on the resource title to get more information.

Where content displays the direct icon, the information is accessible directly from the link. Otherwise the link provides full details of the resource and where it can be obtained.

General guidance

Inspection And Maintenance of Bridge Stay Cable Systems: A Synthesis of Highway Practice by Habib Tabatabai, National Cooperative Highway Research Program, 2005 [214 pp] direct

Bridge Inspection Manual for Cable Stayed Bridge, Philippines Dept Public Works, 2014 [357 pp] direct

Inspection, assessment and appraisal

Suspension bridge cable evaluation and maintenance by C. Gagnon et al., 2010 [9 pp] direct

Maintenance and inspection of bridge stay cable systems - Wind-Induced Vibrations by Habib Tabatabai, 2006 direct

Structural condition assessment of long-span suspension bridges using long-term monitoring data by D. Yang et al., 2010 [9 pp]

Strain-Based Condition Assessment of a Suspension Bridge Instrumented with Structural Health Monitoring System by Y-Q. Ni et al., 2015

Remediation, repair and conservation

Cable Replacement Method for Cable-Stayed Bridges Based on Sensitivity Analysis by Z. Fu et al., 2015

Case studies

Forth Road Bridge: Capital Projects (web pages) direct

Forth Road Bridge: Technical Papers (web links to 9 papers) direct

Severn Bridge – Recent Assessment Of Main Suspension Cables by J. Fisher et al., 2009 [8 pp] direct

Strengthening and Refurbishment of Severn Crossing. Parts 1-5 ICE, 1992 [5 papers]

Reliability-Based Assessment of Suspension Bridges: Application to the Innoshima Bridge by Imai et al, 2001 [14 pp]

Reconstruction of the Williamsburg Bridge: Transition to a Modern Structure by J. Barbas et al., 2001 [10 pp]

Replacement of the ttay cables on Penang Bridge by C. Hendy et al., 2009 [16 pp] direct

Evaluation, rehabilitation planning, and stay-cable replacement design for the Hale Boggs Bridge in Luling, Louisiana by A. Mehrabi et al., 2010 [9 pp] direct

Stay cable replacement of the Luling Bridge (Louisiana) by Armin Mehrabi, 2009 [50 ppt slides] direct

Rehabilitation of the Figueira da Foz Bridge by A. Rito et al., 2005 [8 pp] direct

Report on rehabilitation project of the [cable-stayed] 'Binh Bridge In Vietnam by Y. Yamamoto et al., 2014 [10 pp] direct

Highway bridges

Twickenham Bridge
Twickenham Bridge, Middlesex, Photo: Iridescent

The following guidance is specifically relevant to highway bridges.

Key: Click on the resource title to get more information.

Where content displays the direct icon, the information is accessible directly from the link. Otherwise the link provides full details of the resource and where it can be obtained.

General guidance

The Design Manual for Roads And Bridges: Volume 3 Highway Structures: Inspection And Maintenance contains 39 parts dealing with inspection, maintenance, repair and assessment of highway structures. direct

Conservation of heritage bridges, UK Bridges Board Media Briefing Sheet, 2011 [2 pp] direct

Inspection, assessment and appraisal

Good practice guide: Phase 1 - Maintenance prioritisation for highway structures, London Engineering Group 2011 [43pp] direct

DMRB: Volume 3: Section 1: Inspection [7 parts] direct

DMRB: Volume 3: Section 3: Repair. Part 2ii: Inspection and Repair of Concrete Highway Structures, 1990 [28 pp]direct

DMRB: Volume 3: Section 4: Assessmentdirect

The use of monitored data in the verification of structural and fatigue safety of existing post-tensioned concrete highway bridges by M. A. Treacy. Doctoral thesis EPFL No. 6207, 2014. On-line request required. direct

Remediation, repair and conservation

DMRB: Volume 3: Section 2: Maintenance [5 parts]direct

Part 4: The Conservation of Highway Structures, 2003 [26 pp] direct

DMRB: Volume 3: Section 3: Repair [5 parts] direct

Part 1: Strengthening of Concrete Highway Structures Using Externally Bonded Plates, 1994 [29 pp] direct

Part 2i: Materials for the Repair of Concrete Highway Structures, 1986 [16 pp] direct

Part 2ii: Inspection and Repair of Concrete Highway Structures, 1990 [28 pp] direct

Part 3: Cathodic Protection for use in Reinforced Concrete Highway Structures, 2002 [32 pp] direct

Guidance on the design, assessment and strengthening of masonry parapets on highway structures, UK Department For Transport, 2012 [93 PP] direct

Case studies

London Bridges Engineering Group: Project profiles, (Web Pages) direct

Strengthening the Chillon viaducts deck slabs with reinforced UHPFRC by E. Brühwiler and M. Bastien Masse, IABSE 2015 [8 pp] direct

Rail bridges

Garabit Viaduct
Garabit Viaduct, France, Photo: Nicholas Janberg / Struturae

The following guidance is specifically relevant to rail bridges.

Key: Click on the resource title to get more information.

Where content displays the direct icon, the information is accessible directly from the link. Otherwise the link provides full details of the resource and where it can be obtained.

General guidance

Conserving the Railway Heritage by P Burman et al. (eds), 1997 [244 pp]direct (Available in part via Google Books)

Long Life Bridges, EU-funded research programme, Interim reports direct

Inspection, assessment and appraisal

Sustainable bridges - Assessment for future traffic demands and longer lives, Many publications, 2003-7 direct

Condition assessment and inspection of steel railway bridges, including stress measurements in riveted, bolted and welded structures, 2007 [94 pp] direct

Guideline for inspection and condition assessment of existing European railway bridges, including advice on the use of non-destructive testing by Rosemarie Helmerich (editor), EU Integrated Research Project 'Sustainable Bridges', 2007 [259 pp] direct

Monitoring Guidelines for Railway Bridges by G. Feltrin (Editor), EU Integrated Research Project 'Sustainable Bridges', 2007 [93 pp] direct

Guideline for load and resistance assessment of existing European railway bridges: Advice on the use of advanced methods, EU Integrated Research Project 'Sustainable Bridges', 2007 [428 pp] direct

Reinforced concrete bridges under increased railway traffic loads: fatigue behaviour and safety measures by A. Herwig. Doctoral thesis, EPFL, No. 4010 (2008) [142 pp] direct

Remediation, repair and conservation

Repair and strengthening of railway bridges – Guideline by B Täljsten et al. EU Integrated Research Project 'Sustainable Bridges', 2007 [137 pp] direct

Guidelines for strengthening of railway bridges by L. Elfgren et al. 2009 [5 pp] direct

Case studies

Conservation of Laigh Milton [1865 railway] Viaduct, Ayrshire by R A Paxton, ICE 1998 [13 pp]

Forth Bridge: the restoration challenge by D Sooman et al., ICE 2015 [13 pp]

See papers in the Railway Engineering Conference

and the Structural Faults and Repair Conference

Fatigue safety examination of a riveted railway bridge using data from long term monitoring by Eugen Brühwiler et al. IABSE 2013 [8 pp] direct

Fatigue safety examination of a 150-year old riveted railway bridge by E. Brühwiler 2013 [8 pp] direct

Aqueducts

Stanley Ferry Aqueduct
Stanley Ferry Aqueduct, Yorkshire, Photo: Chris55

The following guidance is specifically relevant to aqueducts.

Key: Click on the resource title to get more information.

Where content displays the direct icon, the information is accessible directly from the link. Otherwise the link provides full details of the resource and where it can be obtained.

Case studies

UK Water Projects Online – many case studies [web pages] direct

Pontcysyllte Aqueduct & Canal – World Heritage Site, 2012 [38 ppt slides] direct

Pontcysyllte Aqueduct & Canal – World Heritage Site: Supplementary Planning Document, 2011 [20 pp] direct

Katrine Aqueduct refurbishment: Essential capital maintenance refurbishment of a strategic raw water supply, 2013 [4 pp] direct

The Thirlmere Aqueduct: Inspection & refurbishment as part of major programme, 2007 [3 pp] direct

Thirlmere Aqueduct refurbishment: 134km aqueduct supplying major city - refurb story continued, 2008 [2 pp] direct

Derwent Valley Aqueduct: Improving resilience of the Severn-Trent Water strategic supply grid, 2011 [3 pp] direct

Talla Aqueduct: Overflow chamber stabilisation, 2014 [4 pp] direct

Haweswater Aqueduct - tunnels & conduits refurbishment: Open-heart surgery on the UK's largest treated-water aqueduct, 2014 [6 pp] direct

Vyrnwy Aqueduct refurbishment: Relining of 50km of 39" cast-iron main by die drawing, 2014 [5 pp] direct

Making Rennie's 1796 Lune aqueduct watertight again by Leslie Clarke ICE, 2013 [9 pp]

Restoration of Stanley Ferry Aqueduct by R. Broad, ICE 1989 [8 pp]