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GRS-IBS

GRS-IBS Quick Facts

  • Bridges constructed with the Geosynthetic Reinforced Soil (GRS) Integrated Bridge System (IBS) cost 25 to 60 percent less than bridges built with traditional methods, depending on the standard of construction and the method of contracting (local forces versus a private contractor).
  • Compared with a DOT standard bridge, a GRS-IBS can potentially save up to 60 percent in cost.
  • GRS IBS uses common, readily available materials and equipment.
  • Note that there is no data on life-cycle and maintenance costs for the GRS-IBS. While we expect these to be lower, it would be prudent to state that there is a potential for reduced life-cycle and maintenance costs because the system has fewer parts.
  • When integrated into the construction of a bridge, the use of GRS makes bridge abutments that are easier and faster to build.
  • GRS IBS construction is much faster than traditional construction methods. A bridge can be completed in weeks, not months.
  • GRS IBS eliminates the "bump at the end of the bridge" problem caused by differential settlement between the bridge abutment and the approaching roadway.
  • Construction is much simpler with GRS IBS since it has fewer parts, involves basic earthwork methods and practice.
  • IBS does not require a deep foundation.
  • GRS IBS is environmentally sensitive and results in minimal environmental impacts.
  • GRS technology is durable if built with quality materials.
  • A GRS bridge performs well in earthquakes if constructed properly with closely spaced reinforcement.
  • GRS IBS can be built in variable weather conditions and can be adapted very easily in the case of unforeseen site conditions.
  • GRS structures are generally more ductile and flexible.
  • Since GRS IBS bridges have fewer parts, they are easier to maintain.
  • Approximately 44 bridges have been built on GRS abutments in the United States; 27 of those using GRS IBS.

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Page last modified on May 18, 2012.
Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000