The Sandy Ford girder erection of the new single span 214’ structure over Vermillion River at Sandy Ford Nature Area in Lasalle County, IL presented numerous challenges including difficult site access, a limited permit for river work, and very long heavy girders. To facilitate the construction of the structure, Westbrook designed a girder launching system to allow the girders to be constructed and braced together behind the abutment and “launched” into place. Supply chain issues in a tight timeline prevented this plan from being implemented.
Westbrook put together an alternate girder erection design that required two cranes to pick and hold individual girder sections in place while they were air-spliced. Then two additional cranes held this first girder in place until the second girder sections were set, air-spliced, and diaphragmed to the first girder. Westbrook provided on-site inspection to ensure the Sandy Ford girder erection was performed per plan.