Solicor Successfully Completes its First Bridge in Ontario

Solicor, the business unit of Canam Group Inc. specialized in the fabrication and marketing of the Sandwich Plate System (SPS) technology, has successfully completed its first bridge deck replacement project in Ontario. The new bridge deck, 7,5 m wide by 11,3 m long, was built for the municipality of Port Hope, east of Toronto from two SPS panels.

The new SPS bridge deck was erected 30 cm above the existing debilitated concrete deck. The longitudinal SPS panels rest on the existing concrete abutments at both ends of the bridge. The two SPS panels as well as the four integrated girders were fabricated at Solicor's Laval, Quebec plant.

For Port Hope, SPS technology was a quick, simple and economical solution. Installing the SPS bridge deck above the existing concrete deck meant that no alterations were required to the existing substructure. The prefabricated panels made it possible to significantly reduce total project costs compared with traditional repair methods.

According to Luc Pelland, President of Solicor, "Winning this contract confirms that our market development strategy in Ontario is working and that the municipalities and engineers in the province recognize the advantages of using SPS technology for bridge rehabilitation and construction. Given our breakthrough in Port Hope, we are confident that new bridge contracts in Ontario will follow."

"The installation and finishing work went smoothly, taking two days instead of the predicted three, so we are delighted with the results," said David Croteau, Technical Director for Solicor.

In November 2003, Solicor successfully completed the erection of the first bridge with a composite SPS deck at Saint-Martin de Beauce, a village 110 km south of Quebec City (InfraStructures vol.9 No.1). A SPS bridge in Sherbrooke, Quebec, (see article) has just been completed, and another, in Bristol, Virginia, is the first bridge contract in the United States using the SPS technology.

The contract awarded by the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDoT) consists of a bridge 19 m by 11,6 m on Highway 58 in Bristol, Virginia, to replace the existing outdated bridge. The bridge will be composed of eight panels fabricated from SPS plates at Solicor's Laval plant.

On completion of the project, the Virginia Transportation Research Council (VTRC) as well as the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University intend to conduct research on the bridge that will assess the SPS deck's load distribution on the main girders.

Several other departments of transportation in Canada and the United States are keeping a close eye on the development of SPS technology.

Source: Canam Group Inc.


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