The Burro Creek Bridge and Roadway Project is a vital component of the Arizona Department of Transportation’s effort to create a continuous four-lane divided highway from Wickenburg to the Nevada border. Burro Creek is located in Mohave County in an extremely remote and often treacherous desert habitat. The project involved upgrading the 3.8-mile, two-lane divided highway into a safer four-lane divided highway, including construction of a new steel arch bridge to match the existing Burro Creek Bridge. The new bridge is 985 feet long and towers 388 feet above the creek.
There were many challenges facing this project, including fissures in the canyon walls; working in solid rock; erecting the structure over the gorge; retaining the integrity of the riparian environment inthe creek below; and the remote, hazardous conditions of the site. However, our team successfully met these challenges and completed the project with minimal impact to the traveling public.
Unique on this project was our “over the top” steel erection procedure. Utilizing a custom-designed hold-back system and a series of temporary diagonal members, we were able to walk an 80-ton crawler crane over the top of the arch, building structural steel truss work below. This process was repeated until the crawler crane and completed structure were cantilevered 350 feet from the arch bearings. After both halves of the structure were erected, the holdbacks were loosened and the two cantilever sections connected midspan.
Our team was responsible for roadway excavation, including a significant volume of rock that required blasting.; grading, drainage, and paving the existing roadway to a four-lane divided section with one new steel truss arch bridge; two new reinforced concrete box culverts; re-vegetation of existing cacti; signing; striping; and other miscellaneous work. The new steel arch bridge required 4,102,950 pounds of structural steel, 994,800 pounds of reinforcing steel and 4,265 cubic yards of structural concrete.