TxDOT IH-30 Bridge Replacement

Designing an interstate bridge replacement with accelerated construction and creative detours

Project Purpose

The TxDOT Paris District recently improved the IH-30 overpass at FM 2642 in Royse City, northeast of Dallas. Built in the 1950s, the existing overpass bridges were functionally obsolete and were starting to experience structural issues from repeated impacts with trucks and large vehicles. In addition to reconstructing the overpass with new bridges, this 1.6-mile project also included rebuilding main lanes and frontage roads, converting the frontage roads to one-way traffic, and improving the FM 2642 intersection with pedestrian accommodations and a new traffic signal. The project timeline was accelerated due to rapid development that was planned in the surrounding area.

Project Approach

As the prime consultant, KFA developed PS&E for the roadway main lanes, frontage roads, side streets, intersections, drainage, signing and marking, traffic control, and erosion control. We also managed subconsultants for geotechnical and bridge design.

The project involved raising the existing IH-30 bridge over FM 2642 by three feet to provide adequate vertical clearance for large tractor trailer trucks and also to make room for U-turn lanes beneath the bridge. KFA also designed related roadway improvements including main lane widening, retaining wall design, converting the existing frontage roads from two-way traffic to one-way, constructing new entrance and exit ramps, widening and improving approximately half a mile of FM 2642, and widening and rehabilitating approximately 1.25 miles of County Road 2515 to accommodate detoured traffic during construction.

KFA coordinated the pavement design with our geotechnical subconsultant to develop a pavement recommendation that accommodates existing and future traffic while considering the unsuitable subgrade condition in the area. We developed a continuously reinforced concrete pavement (CRCP) section that was approved by the District Pavement Engineer. The traffic control plan carefully considered the pavement section to determine phase durations and likely construction timelines. Driveway access was coordinated with adjacent property owners and continuous driveway access was provided at all times during construction.

To accelerate construction, KFA developed an accelerated traffic control plan to shift main lane traffic onto the widened frontage roads, close the underpass, and detour traffic, allowing demolition and construction of the main lane bridge to be concurrent for both directions. This required overbuilding the entrance and exit ramps on either side of the bridge to accommodate two lanes of 65 mph main lane traffic for the temporary shift, while separating main lane and frontage traffic with barrier. The design was accomplished within the already accelerated schedule.

Project Results

KFA’s design allowed the IH-30 bridge replacement to be completed on time to serve surrounding development and continue to carry significant traffic volumes. In addition to widening the main lanes to allow for the future addition of one lane in each direction, this project provided the following safety improvements for the area:

  • Converting the frontage roads from two-way to one-way traffic reduces the chance of head-on collisions when vehicles are entering or exiting the highway.
  • Increasing the vehicle clearance by raising the bridge will reduce frequency of trucks striking the bridge and disrupting traffic.