Vanek, Ryzhikov Honored for Skagit River Bridge Replacement Paper

Christopher Vanek
Christopher Vanek
Victor Ryzhikov
Victor Ryzhikov

Christopher Vanek and Victor Ryzhikov will receive the 2015 Robert J. Lyman Award from the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute (PCI) for an article they co-wrote on the replacement of the collapsed Skagit River Bridge.

Vanek and Ryzhikov, structural engineers in the Tampa office, co-authored “Restoring a Collapsed Span over the Skagit River” with Bijan Khaleghi, bridge design engineer for the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT). The paper was published in the January-February 2015 issue of PCI Journal.

Vanek was lead engineer and Ryzhikov was engineer of record for the Skagit River Bridge project.

On May 23, 2013, a semitrailer hit several overhead steel truss members of the Interstate 5 bridge over the Skagit River in Mount Vernon, Washington, causing the north span to collapse.

Skagit River Bridge replacement


Christopher Vanek and Victor Ryzhikov, co-authors of “Restoring a Collapsed Span over the Skagit River,” will receive the 2015 Robert J. Lyman Award from the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute

WSP USA served as the lead designer for an emergency design-build contract awarded to the Max J. Kuney Company by WSDOT on June 19, 2013. The contract required the reopening of the permanent replacement span within 90 days. The repaired bridge opened to traffic on Sept. 15, 2013.

Vanek and Ryzhikov, part of a team of structural engineers that also included John Poulson and Charles Rudie, determined that the best approach was to use a lightweight concrete integral deck girder design enhanced with an innovative, full flexural-shear connection.

Precast, prestressed concrete was used and met the requirement of keeping the bridge’s weight within 5 percent of the original steel bridge, allowing the undamaged segments of the substructure to be reused. The replacement span was assembled alongside the existing bridge and skidded into place during a single 19-hour closure of I-5.

The paper details the process from design through completion, and was chosen for the PCI award based on Vanek, Ryzhikov and Khaleghi’s “contribution to the advancement of the construction, production and erection of precast and prestressed concrete.” The award will be presented at the PCI Fall Committee Days and Membership Conference in Louisville on Oct. 16.

Topics: People, Awards


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