The National Academies

NCHRP 20-07/Task 399 [Final]

Identifying Bridge Maintenance and Preservation Activities which Minimize Environmental Impact
[ NCHRP 20-07 (Research for AASHTO Standing Committee on Highways) ]

  Project Data
Funds: $100,000
Research Agency: Greenman-Pedersen, Inc.
Principal Investigator: Dr. Gary McVoy
Effective Date: 1/4/2017
Completion Date: 2/28/2018

The Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) legislation established national goals for infrastructure condition, congestion reduction, and environmental sustainability and reduced project delivery delays. In 2015, these goals were carried forward in the Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act).
Bridge Maintenance and Preservation activities that minimize environmental impacts can have positive impacts on these national goals:
  • Infrastructure condition - Timely coating system and joint seal maintenance can extend bridge life and prevent the deposition of hazardous paint and other materials into waterways.
  • Congestion reduction - Bridge deck maintenance on bridges in fair condition can reduce traffic noise, speed change cycles, and truck detours. Timely preservation work may also reduce work zone disruptions and other negative aspects of bridge operations and life cycle.
  • Environmental sustainability - Reduced material and energy needs may result from extended bridge life and reduce the need for more significant impacts associated with bridge replacement.
  • Reduced project delivery delays – Activities, which minimize environmental impacts can reduce the time required to obtain environmental documents and permits.
The objective of this project was to identify effective practices and provide the information needed to develop guidelines to assist bridge owners in selecting the most appropriate strategies and procedures for bridge maintenance and preservation activities in order to minimize environmental impacts.
  • Agency's final report documents the entire research effort. To access all the links in Table 9: Summary of Impacts and Mitigation Recommendations for Superstructure Work please download the zip file using the link below.
  • Environmental Guidelines for Bridge Maintenance and Preservation Activities provides (1) a list of standard bridge maintenance and preservation actions with environmental impact assessment of each action and (2) a Decision Aid Table (DAT) summarized the state DOTs’ practices featuring links to source documents and contact information. To access the Decision Aid Table:
    1. Download the zip file and extract all files into one folder.
    2. Open the Excel DAT spreadsheet.
(Staff: Waseem Dekelbab)

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