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Highways for LIFE

Arrow Iowa Demonstration Project: Improvements to the 24th Street–I-29/80 Interchange in Council Bluffs

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Final Report November 2009 Cover. Photo 1: Setting of a full depth precast deck panel. Photo 2: The new 24th Street Bridge over I-29/I-80 in Council Bluffs

Final Report November 2009

Table of Contents


The purpose of the Highways for LIFE (HfL) pilot program is to accelerate the use of innovations that improve highway safety and quality while reducing congestion caused by construction. LIFE is an acronym for Longer–lasting highway infrastructure using Innovations to accomplish the Fast construction of Efficient and safe highways and bridges.

Specifically, HfL focuses on speeding up the widespread adoption of proven innovations in the highway community. "Innovations" is an inclusive term used by HfL to encompass technologies, materials, tools, equipment, procedures, specifications, methodologies, processes, and practices used to finance, design, or construct highways. HfL is based on the recognition that innovations are available that, if widely and rapidly implemented, would result in significant benefits to road users and highway agencies.

Although innovations themselves are important, HfL is as much about changing the highway community's culture from one that considers innovation something that only adds to the workload, delays projects, raises costs, or increases risk to one that sees it as an opportunity to provide better highway transportation service. HfL is also an effort to change the way highway community decisionmakers and participants perceive their jobs and the service they provide.

The HfL pilot program, described in Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA–LU) Section 1502, includes funding for demonstration construction projects. By providing incentives for projects, HfL promotes improvements in safety, construction–related congestion, and quality that can be achieved through the use of performance goals and innovations. This report documents one such HfL demonstration project.

Additional information on the HfL program is at


This document is disseminated under the sponsorship of the U.S. Department of Transportation in the interest of information exchange. The U.S. Government assumes no liability for its contents or use thereof. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation.

The U.S. Government does not endorse products or manufacturers. Trade and manufacturers' names appear in this report only because they are considered essential to the object of the document.

1. Report No. 2. Government Accession No. 3. Recipient's Catalog No.
4. Title and Subtitle
Iowa Demonstration Project: Improvements to the 24th Street–I–29/80 Interchange in Council Bluffs
5. Report Date
November 2009
6. Performing Organization Code
7. Author(s)
Paul Littleton, P.E., Jagannath Mallela, Gary Hoffman, P.E., R.L.S.
8. Performing Organization Report No.
9. Performing Organization Name and Address
Applied Research Associates, Inc.
100 Trade Centre Drive, Suite 200
Champaign, IL 61820
10. Work Unit No.(TRAIS) C6B
11. Contract or Grant No.
12. Sponsoring Agency Name and Address
Office of Infrastructure
Federal Highway Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590

13. Type of Report and Period Covered
Final Report
May 2007–November 2009

14. Sponsoring Agency Code
15. Supplementary Notes
Contracting Officers Technical Representatives: Byron Lord, Mary Huie
16. Abstract

As part of a national initiative sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration under the Highways for LIFE program, the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) was awarded a $1 million grant to demonstrate the use of proven, innovative technologies for accelerated bridge construction. This report documents the use of these innovations, such as cost–plus–time (A+B) bidding and prefabricated full–depth bridge panels used to accelerate the construction of the 24th Street–Interstate 29/80 diamond interchange in Council Bluffs in one construction season.  

This report details the innovation used to reconstruct the 24th Street bridge with precast bridge deck panels, high– performance materials, and innovative construction and contracting techniques. Innovations in this project increased safety, enhanced quality, and allowed the contractor to replace the 24th Street bridge in one construction season instead of two as would have been required for traditional construction methods. 

Using prefabricated deck panels and high–performance materials increased the initial construction cost by 12 percent over traditional construction. However, a more comprehensive economic analysis including user cost savings shows that the project saved road users about $1 million (or about 8 percent of the $12.7 million project costs). The experience gained on this successful project will help the Iowa DOT implement these innovations more routinely on future projects.
17. Key Words
Highways for LIFE, cost–plus–time (A+B) bidding, prefabricated bridge deck panels, innovative construction, high–performance materials, fully contained flooded backfill, self–consolidating concrete, intelligent transportation system, economic analysis
18. Distribution Statement

No restriction. This document is available to the public through the National Technical Information Service
5285 Port Royal Road
Springfield, VA 22161

19. Security Classif. (of this page)
20. No. of Pages
21. Price  

Form DOT F 1700.7 (8–72) Reproduction of completed page authorized

Symbol When You Know Multiply By To Find Symbol Symbol When You Know Multiply By To Find Symbol
in inches 25.4 millimeters mm mm millimeters 0.039 inches in
ft feet 0.305 meters m m meters 3.28 feet ft
yd yards 0.914 meters m m meters 1.09 yards yd
mi miles 1.61 kilometers km km kilometers 0.621 miles mi
in2 square inches 645.2 square millimeters mm2 mm2 square millimeters 0.0016 square inches in2
ft2 square feet 0.093 square meters m2 m2 square meters 10.764 square feet ft2
yd2 square yards 0.836 square meters m2 m2 square meters 1.195 square yards ac
ac acres 0.405 hectares ha ha hectares 2.47 acres mi2
mi2 square miles 2.59 square kilometers km2 km2 square kilometers 0.386 square miles
fl oz fluid ounces 29.57 milliliters ml ml milliliters 0.034 fluid ounces fl oz
gal gallons 3.785 liters l l liters 0.264 gallons gal
ft3 cubic feet 0.028 cubic meters m3 m3 cubic meters 35.71 cubic feet ft3
yd3 cubic yards 0.765 cubic meters m3 m3 cubic meters 1.307 cubic yard yd3
NOTE: Volumes greater than 1000 l shall be shown in m3
oz ounces 28.35 grams g g grams 0.035 ounces oz
lb pounds 0.454 kilograms kg kg kilograms 2.202 pounds lb
T short tons (2000 lb) 0.907 megagrams Mg Mg megagrams 1.103 short tons (2000 lb) T
TEMPERATURE (exact degrees) TEMPERATURE (exact degrees)
°F Fahrenheit 5(F–32)/9 or (F–32)/1.8 Celcius °C °C Celcius 1.8C +32 Fahrenheit °F
fc foot–candles 10.76 lux l lx lux 0.0929 foot–candles fc
fl foot–Lamberts 3.426 candela/m2 cd/m2 cd/m2 candela/m2 0.2919 foot–Lamberts fl
lbg pounds 4.45 newtons N N newtons 0.225 poundforce lbf
lb/in2 pound per square inch 6.89 kilopascals kPa kPa kilopascals 0.145 poundforce per square inch ib/in2(psi)
k/in2 klps per square inch 6.89 megaPascals mPa MPa megaPascals 0.145 klps per square inch k/in2(ips)
ib/ft3(pcf) pounds per cubic foot 16.02 kilograms per cubic meter kg/m3 kg/m3 pounds per cubic foot 0.062 kilograms per cubic meter ib/ft3(pcf)


The project team would like to acknowledge the invaluable insights and guidance of Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Highways for LIFE Team Leader Byron Lord and Program Coordinators Mary Huie and Kathleen Bergeron, who served as the technical panel on this demonstration project. Their vast knowledge and experience with the various aspects of construction, technology deployment, and technology transfer helped immensely in developing both the approach and the technical matter for this document. The team also is indebted to Iowa Department of Transportation Engineers John Carns, Ahmad Hawash, and Orest Lechnowsky and FHWA Engineers Andrew Wilson, Joe Jurasic, and Curtis Monk for their tireless advice, assistance, and coordination during this project.

Abbreviations and Symbols

AASHTO American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials
A+B cost–plus–time bidding
AADT annual average daily traffic
CBIS Council Bluffs Interstate System
dB(A) A–weighted decibel
DOT Department of Transportation
FHWA Federal Highway Administration
HfL Highways for LIFE
HPC high–performance concrete
HPS high–performance steel
Hz hertz
IRI International Roughness Index
ITS intelligent transportation system
LTAP Local Technical Assistance Program
OBSI onboard sound intensity
OSHA Occupational Safety and Health Administration
SAFETEA–LU Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users
SI Sound intensity
SRTT Standard reference test tire
VOC Vehicle operating cost
vpd vehicles per day
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Mary Huie
Center for Accelerating Innovation


United States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway Administration