Rio-Niteroi Bridge Features Record Girder Span

by Gerald F. Fox, (M.ASCE), Partner; Howard Needles Tammen & Bergendoff, New York, N.Y.,
H. James Graham, (F.ASCE), Chf. Structural Engr.; Howard Needles Tammen & Bergendoff, New York, N.Y.,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1976, Vol. 46, Issue 4, Pg. 86-89

Document Type: Feature article


The six-lane highway bridge between Rio de Janeiro and Niteroi, Brazil, is 8.25 miles (13.3 km) long. There are 5.5 miles (8.9 km) constructed over the open waters of Guanabara Bay. The central navigation spans are comprised of three span continuous steel girder with spans of 65, 984, 656 ft (200, 300, 200 m), while approach spans are of segmental precast prestressed concrete. The orthotropic deck navigation spans feature a world record girder span. The box girders are fabricated full size on land, were floated out, and jacked up to final position 197 ft (60 m) above sea level. A pair of completed boxes 566 ft (172.6 m) were used as a pontoon to transport the side spans. The pontoon was subsequently jacked out of the water to form the central part of the main span. Some problems were encountered in controlling weld toughness and joint distortion.

Subject Headings: Girder bridges | Span bridges | Highway bridges | Navigation (geomatic) | Precast concrete | Jacking | Developing countries | Bays | Brazil | South America

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