FiberSPAN cantilever sidewalk installed on Wilson-Burt bridge

The fiber reinforced polymer (FRP) panels weigh less than 8 lb/sq ft.

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At the end of November, Niagara County unveiled the bridge’s new 5.5-ft wide, 442-ft long FiberSPAN cantilever sidewalk as part of a full bridge rehabilitation project valued at $4.2 million.

“This project is another example of how the cantilever sidewalk system can meet the growing demand for pedestrian and cycling activities,” said Scott Reeve, president of Composite Advantage (Dayton, OH, US). “On Wilson-Burt Bridge, the sidewalk was old, crumbling from wear and tear and it was too narrow to support modern traffic requirements. Our lightweight FiberSPAN product made it possible for designers to increase clear sidewalk width to 5.5 ft and maintain a dead load less than the original weight.”

For Wilson-Burt Bridge, the FiberSPAN cantilever sidewalk was designed to support a live load of 85 psf, while minimizing deflections to less than ¼ inch (L/500) and handle a temperature differential of 100°F. Twenty prefabricated sidewalk sections were delivered to the job site ready for installation on floor beams extending perpendicular from the existing bridge structure. The sidewalk panels were manufactured with a 1.76% cross-slope top surface for water drainage. The cross-slope is an easier and more cost-effective approach than sloping support beams or installing shims. The 22-ft long panels have a shop applied non-slip surface. Internal steel connection points were used to attach the railing directly to the sidewalk panels.