Northern red oak glued-laminated timber bridge

Harvey B. Manbeck, Paul R. Blankenhorn, John J. Janowiak, Ray W. Witmer, Peter Labosky, Patrick S. Powers, Perry D. Schram

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


A 5-year program to monitor the performance of a red oak longitudinal girder, transverse deck glued-laminated (glulam) highway bridge is presented. The bridge design details, including preservative treatment results, are described. The live loading results indicate that the predicted and observed live load beam deflections agree to within 7% when the stiffness of the individual beam laminations is used as a predictor and a 10% increase in beam stiffness due to composite action between the deck panel and longitudinal girders is incorporated into the design. The dimensional stability of the deck panels over 3 years has been monitored and analyzed. Significant reflexive cracking of the asphaltic wearing surface has been observed at the interface between each red oak deck panel. This has been attributed to the gap provided between each panel during construction, to the placement of the waterproof membrane directly over the creosote-treated deck panels, and to improper mating of the deck panels to the beams during installation of the lag bolts. Long-term (3-year) dead load deflection measurements indicate that after approximately 1 year, dead load deflections remain nearly constant for the interior beams. Elevations of the lower surface of the two exterior beams fluctuate considerably and vary seasonally. There is no evidence of delamination of the girders or deck panels after 4 years. However, there is some evidence of delamination of the curbs and the tops of rail posts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)269-278
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Bridge Engineering
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 1999

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction


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