ICE®'s IP-3 Working on a Postage Stamp
"Hydro with Pants"
Editor: Debbie Reaney
The City of Keene, NH is responsible for maintaining 42 bridges in the area, including 33 vehicular bridges and 9 bicycle/pedestrian bridges. These bridges provide critical transportation links throughout the city and are important thoroughfares for many area residents. Ranging in age from new to 100-years-old, the New Hampshire Department of Transportation (NHDOT) inspects these bridges on a bi-annual basis. However, during inspection in 2020, the Island Street Bridge was so degraded they needed to build a new one. Interestingly, Island Street's bridge was intended to be a temporary fix after the original bridge, an iron truss bridge with wooden floor that was originally built in 1877, collapsed. While the city councilors and residents debated what to do, a "Bailey Bridge" was installed in 1979. Named for Sir Donald Bailey, of Britain's Royal Engineers, Baily Bridges were designed during World War II to be built quickly, as Allied armies moved forward, yet still be strong enough to hold the weight of tanks and heavy equipment. The bridges were so strong, many were left in place for years until permanent bridges could be built. Until recently Keene's bridge was the oldest still-used Bailey bridge in New Hampshire, and one of the oldest continually used Baileys in the world. No one expected it to last for over 30 years and its most recent update was the replacement of the bridge deck in 2004.
This project presented a myriad of challenges, including the extremely tight space they had to work in. Chosen for their expertise, subcontractor for BUR Construction, ED Swett Inc. has led the way in bridge building for the New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Vermont regions since 1936. Early in July 2023 the ED Swett team carefully began disassembling the bridge components spanning Ashuelot River including driving the H-pile for a temporary bridge bent so they could begin reconstruction. In August, the subcontractor removed the remaining trusses and load-bearing metal structures. The Island Street/"Baily Bridge" has now been dismantled and the City of Keene hopes to re-purpose the main truss components to provide trail connections over a road instead of an at grade crossing with steep-sloped approaches as part of the upcoming Winchester Street Reconstruction Project.
The ED Swett crew initially used their own vibratory hammer to the install 50' (ft) long sheets required for the retaining wall, however the house that sits only 5 ½' (ft) from the work zone began to shake and it was determined that a gentler touch was required. Due to the limited space for crane use, a "hydro in pants" was suggested for better control. After a quick call to their International Construction Equipment (ICE®) Sales and Service team was made, an ICE® IP-3 was brought in. The lightweight package of this hammer was easily handled by the available crane which was limited by overhead power lines, the nearby river and multiple historic structures making this tough task look easy.
The ICE® IP-3 Hydraulic hammer, with the sheeting pants attachment, allowed ED Swett to quickly place the sheeting wall without the need for a lead set-up. Once the sheeting wall was installed, the team went to work on excavation of the site. Upon complete removal, ED Swett went to work driving 95' (Ft) long 12x84 H-piles to bedrock utilizing their previously purchased ICE® I-19V2 Diesel Impact Hammer to strengthen the new abutments being placed. Following completion of this deep foundation, the crew will then restore the area to grade and pull any necessary sheets back out with a vibratory hammer.
In-line with the City's Complete Streets Policy, the project will address the needs of all users of the corridor including vehicular traffic, bicyclists, and pedestrians. As of October 2023, the Island Street Bridge is on track to complete reconstruction by the end of December. Excellent work by the ED Swett, Inc. Team! Their commitment to professionalism and safety is thoroughly appreciated by the City of Keene and the surrounding areas. International Construction Equipment, Inc. looks forward to the opportunity to provide the quality equipment required to complete future projects and thanks ED Swett for their continued trust.
Pollyanna Cunningham, MA, MBA
Vice President Marketing, Brand and Media Relations
Vice President IT and IT Comm
ICE® - International Construction Equipment, Inc
Office - 704-821-8200
Email - firstname.lastname@example.org
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