The flexibility of steel was the key strength to assisting in the design of bridge 36A for the South West Calgary Ring Road. Some bridges are straight some are skewed, some are kinked and some are flared. Bridge 36A had a combination of all of these elements to deal with the complex road geometry.
Special care was required in designing and detailing, fabricating and constructing the bridge. The design team worked closely with fabricator to develop the best solution to meet the stringent requirements of the customer’s specifications. The changing road widths and the curving alignment of the road pushed the limits of the design team to help ensure a desirable and constructible solution was reached.
Flaring (not keeping the girders completely parallel) of girders allowed for the transition in road width. The skew of the girders allowed for the proper support to the girders from the alignment of the upper road surface as opposed to the lower road surface. The kinking of the girders allowed for the upper alignment to follow the curve, while essentially keeping each girder segment straight to assist with fabrication and handling.
The adaptability of the configurations of steel elements is a tribute to the material.