The new 5-lane William R. Bennett Bridge is the centerpiece of a revitalized road network in the Okanagan, replacing the 3-lane lift span floating Okanagan Lake Bridge built in 1958. Used by more than 69,000 vehicles a day, the new bridge is an important element in the region’s transportation infrastructure.
Innovative geotechnical solutions optimized the design for bridge foundations and approach embankments of very soft and compressible soils in depths of over 100 meters. Pile load testing near the west elevated bridge structure proved critical, and axial and lateral load tests were conducted on concrete-filled 50-meter long, 610mm steel pipe piles during design.
The construction of the new bridge and disposal of the existing bridge presented unique environmental challenges. Environmental site investigations were completed for the proposed graving dock, road embankments and bridge alignment. EXP also prepared the Environmental Protection Plan and Environmental Management System, provided environmental management and coordination for the construction team, and completed the required environmental compliance reporting to stakeholders, including regulatory bodies and the owner.