Cost and Load Effect Comparisons Between Reinforced Concrete Integral and Non-Integral Bridge Using Experimental and Analytical Examinations

  • Simpson Nyambane Osano, Dr. University of Nairobi
  • Mellese Yimam, Eng. University of Nairobi
  • Silvester Abuodha, Prof. University of Nairobi
Keywords: Cracking loads, integral bridge models, non-integral bridge models, ultimate failure loads


Bridges without joints or bearings are referred to as "integral bridges," while bridges with joints and expansion joints are referred to as "non integral bridges. This study aims to examine the cost differences between the integral and non-integral bridge of the same length and height using analytical and experimental investigations. Modelling, analysis, design, detailing and costing of 15m,20m, 22.5m and 25m single span reinforced concrete girder integral bridge and 15m,20m, 22.5m and 25m single span reinforced concrete girder non integral bridge were done. The experimental program included six reinforced concrete bridge models three integral bridge models; namely, a) 1000mm length, 600mm high and 95mm thick b)1250mm length,600mm high and 105mm thick c) 1500mm length,600mm high and 120mm thick and three additional non-integral bridge model of the same sizes and reinforcements. Analytical examinations were made for six integral bridges and six non-integral bridges for verifications. The experimental results reveals that the MIDS CIVIL finite element software is in agreement with the results obtained within +/-10% and recommended to be used in the design. The priced bill of quantities based on the design reveals that the decrease of cost by 19.1% to 20.0% for integral bridge as compared to non-integral bridges with the same length and height. It is recommended that planners and engineers embrace integral design and construction by reviewing the road design handbook, which specifies that integral design must take precedence over non-integral concepts to save costs.

Author Biographies

Simpson Nyambane Osano, Dr., University of Nairobi

Director of Civil and Construction Engineering Department , University of Nairobi

Mellese Yimam, Eng., University of Nairobi

Ph.D. Student at University of Nairobi and Engineering Consultant

Silvester Abuodha, Prof., University of Nairobi

Asssociate Professor at University of Nairobi and Engineering Consultant