Minimum Cost Design of Elevated Transit Structures

by Antoine E. Naaman, (M.ASCE), Prof. of Struct. Design; Dept. of Materials Engrg., Univ. of Illinois at Chicago Circle, Chicago, Ill.,
Marshall L. Silver, (M.ASCE), Assoc. Prof. of Soils Mechanics; Dept. of Materials Engrg., Univ. of Illinois at Chicago Circle, Chicago, Ill.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Construction Division, 1976, Vol. 102, Issue 1, Pg. 99-110

Document Type: Journal Paper


The results of a minimum cost design study for a typical elevated transportation structure for rail transit are presented. Special emphasis is given to clarify the impact of major variables such as span length, beam spacing, and soil conditions on the partial cost of each structural subsystem, on the total cost of the structure and on the minimum cost span. Suitable minimum cost design procedures are rapidly reviewed and the influence of the structural material is presented. The analysis of the results obtained in this investigation and their comparison to results obtained by other investigators for different structural systems and materials lead to a number of simple guidelines particularly useful when planning and designing elevated transportation structures. Most importantly, it was found that the minimum cost span is not very sensitive to the soil conditions, to the vehicle loadings, to the structural system and material, and to the minimum cost procedure used.

Subject Headings: Construction materials | Transportation studies | Highway and road structures | Soil properties | Structural analysis | Vehicle loads | Beams | Spacing

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