Complete reinforced earth abutments

For decades, bridge abutments and supports have been built in the form of reinforced earth all over the world. This technology significantly reduces the investment costs. The block of reinforced earth is build practically to the full height of the abutment. The only reinforced concrete element (traditional monolithic technology) in a such structure is the main beam resisting on a block from reinforced earth, which supports the spans of the structure and the transition plate.

In order to provide the optimal design of the bridge structure, it is recommended to form supports and access roads also in technology of reinforced earth with geosynthetic materials. It provides the  continuity of access roads with the bridge abutment . The use of geosynthetic reinforcement in the construction of access roads in the form of retaining structures limits the earthworks required to form the traditional slopes and also reduces the risk of uneven ground subsidence.

Another important aspect for construction of full abutments of reinforced earth compared to the traditional (monolithic) technology is the possibility of building structures on low-bearing soils without the intermediate foundation. Due to proper construction work schedule, first we can build the block from the reinforced earth, then overload the structure with eg. concrete plates and lead to a controlled consolidation of the subsoil. Once the settlements have stabilized, we can start construction of monolithic structures.

Key advantages:

  • Durability of the components – at least 120 years of use (adapted to the requirements of the engineering objects),
  • Limitation of the area required for the bridge abutments and access roads,
  • Possibility of foundation of engineering objects on the low-bearing soils,
  • Easy and quick construction,
  • Lower purchasing and labor cost compared to traditional monolithic structures.
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