Merchants Bridge Replacement

Project Summary

Our team provided design and environmental services for the replacement of the Merchants Bridge main span over the Mississippi River, including foundation repairs. The bridge, built in 1889, carries five Class I railroads. The double-track structure has three main truss spans of 520 feet each that were replaced. In addition, the unreinforced masonry piers had been significantly scoured and did not provide AREMA-level seismic resistance.

During the 30% design phase, the project team studied several scenarios: open deck and ballasted deck options, E80 and E90 live loading, various truss panel configurations, truss float-in scenarios, seismic resistance of existing foundations, seismic retrofit schemes, seismic isolation bearings, and barge vessel collision analysis.

Final design of the three new 520-foot truss spans included strengthening of the existing masonry foundations to withstand seismic and barge collision events, as well as a combination of float-in, lifting spans with strand-jacks, and lateral slide-into-place.

We also provided environmental documentation services, including coordination with such agencies as:

  • U.S. Coast Guard
  • U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  • U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
  • State historic preservation offices
  • Missouri Department of Natural Resources
  • Illinois Department of Natural Resources

Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis


St. Louis, Missouri

Related Services

Rail Bridges, Bridges, Rail