USACE Norfolk District Fort Eustis Railroad bridge replacements

Project Summary

Joint Base Langley-Eustis, in Newport News, Virginia, is home to the 633rd Air Base Wing of Langley Air Force Base, whose mission is to provide warfighters, combat support, global sustainment operations and medical humanitarian support via its Global Response Force. Fort Eustis houses the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command.

Hanson provided structural design services for the replacement of two railroad bridges and track alignment at Fort Eustis. The project initially involved performing a review of the bridges' precast concrete beams and curbs. The peer review audited the structural design for conformance with AREMA requirements. When Hanson assumed the role of designer from another consultant, our team completed an informal value engineering analysis to change the original plan for the bridge from a direct fixation-type track to a more conventional railroad track with timber ties on ballast. The resulting deck structure provided a cost and schedule benefit and improved the projected long-term performance of the bridge and track.

After completing a review of the superstructure design, Hanson performed final design and drawing preparation for bridges 4 and 5, which included all substructure elements. The typical 22-foot-6-inch-long precast beams are supported on steel-pier caps welded onto 16-inch-diameter pipe piles. Bridge 4 includes 24 spans, for a total length of 535 feet on tangent alignment, while Bridge 5 consists of 20 spans for a total length of 430 feet on curved alignment.

Hanson also completed the design of the track alignment and profile to meet U.S. Army Corps of Engineers standards and provided design plans and specifications in support of the track construction.

The project’s sustainable elements included:

  • recycling rail, ties, plates and spikes for 3,000 linear feet of rail
  • removing 594 creosote-treated piles from protected coastal wetlands and reducing the rail trestle and abutment footprint, restoring 2,000 square feet of wetland
  • remediating contaminated wetlands soil
  • designing bridge and abutments to increase natural water flow and facilitate flora and fauna development and nutrient transmission