Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources


Civil and Environmental Engineering

Committee Chair

Julio F. Davalos

Committee Co-Chair

Karl E. Barth


The bridge inventory of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation-District 3 (PennDOT-D3) includes 128 concrete T-Beam bridges built in 1920 to 1960. Due to deterioration over time, a significant number of these bridges are in need of repair or replacement. Traditional methods of repair require temporary bridge-closures and do not provide long-term effective solutions. Moreover, the cost of replacement is not financially viable. Thus, PennDOT D-3 sponsored this project to investigate the technical and economic suitability of a relatively new technology, widely used for seismic retrofit, consisting of externally bonded Fiber-Reinforce Polymer (FRP) for repair and retrofit of concrete T-Beam bridges in particular, but applicable to other bridge structures in PA.;This thesis discusses a case-study project for innovative rehabilitation of cast-in-place concrete T-Beam bridges in PennDOT-D3. The 128 bridges considered are simply-supported structures of 20 to 60-ft span that provide much needed service throughout the District. Although specific to PennDOT-D3 this study presents a general prescription for the possible adoption of FRP for bridge repair and retrofit.;This study describes a method for cataloging candidate bridges from an inventory based on suitability and favorability for repair with externally bonded FRP composites. The rationale for the classification of a set of characteristics is described. This classification is based on inspection data (photographical indication of damage and field verification for representative bridges) and age, span, and ADT/ADTT. From these characteristics, three suitable levels are identified: Class 1 (high), Class 2 (moderate) and Class 3 (low). Correspondingly, 3 repair protocols are recommended: Major (repair contracted out through competitive bid), Moderate (repair performed as a joint effort between state engineers and contractors), and Minor (repair performed entirely by an in-house crew). Comparisons are given for both cost-benefit (future worth) and construction methods for both FRP and conventional repair for these 3 levels. Also, from a synthesis of classification characteristics and repair levels, a prescription for the selection of candidate bridges for trial repair is presented, to implement the technology on Phase II of this project currently underway.