In 2004, Civil Consultants was hired by Odyssey Contracting Corporation to design containment structures for paint removal on the historic Queensboro Bridge in New York City and analyze the containment reactions and their effects on the bridge.
The Queensboro Bridge is a steel truss structure first opened to traffic in 1909, and has become a landmark in New York City.
For over 15 years, the New York Department of Transportation promoted the work to rehabilitate the bridge to ensure safe travel over the structure for future years. The protective paint on the structural steel trusses had been under attack from extensive traffic, deicing agents and salt air. The paint had deteriorated to the point that several areas of steel were left with little to no protection from the elements. It was determined that it would be necessary to remove all remaining existing paint and apply a new protective coating system.
The paint removal process required sand blasting to bare metal with contaminated grit and paint residue captured and discarded properly. The containment structures consisted of heavy-duty fabric supported by high strength steel cables. The cables were designed to be supported by the bridge, requiring a structural analysis of all anchorage points. Loads resulting from wind and material weight were applied to a bridge model created by Civil Consultants in Staad Pro, a structural analysis program. The analysis was performed and anchorage points were modified when necessary to ensure that all bridge members could withstand the anticipated forces.
The project was completed in 2008. The estimated price of the painting portion of the bridge rehabilitation is $50,000,000.