Highway Bridges: Major Projects Present Challenges for States, but Strategies Exist to Overcome Them, Report to Congressional Committees   [open pdf - 7MB]

"Over 600,000 bridges carry the nation's passenger car, bus and commercial vehicle traffic over waterways, highways, and railways. Large bridges are typically located on heavily used highways and some are in need of repair or replacement, which can be resource intensive. In addition, the nation's surface transportation system is under growing strain and funding it is on GAO's [Government Accountability Office] High Risk list. GAO was asked to review major bridge projects. This report examines (1) condition trends over the past 10 years for the nation's large bridges and (2) challenges states reported facing in constructing or completing major bridge projects in the past 5 years, as well as state and FHWA strategies to address those challenges. GAO analyzed federal bridge data for the top 1 percent of bridges defined by deck area and surveyed transportation departments in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico to identify recent and ongoing major bridge projects. For those states identifying applicable major bridge projects, the survey asked for further information on challenges faced. GAO also conducted interviews with federal and state transportation officials involved with 8 projects in 5 states, selected to include various design and contracting methods, among other criteria. GAO provided a draft of this report to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for comment. DOT provided technical comments, which were incorporated as appropriate."

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Government Accountability Office: http://www.gao.gov/
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