The state-funded NCDOT Bridge Improvement Program uses a new project procurement process called express design-build, which greatly shortens the amount of time it takes to build the structure. The process provides a faster procurement time than the traditional design-build methodology in that contractors are not required to submit a technical proposal. In addition to expediting construction, design-build projects utilize more private sector contractors, stimulating job creation.
Most of the bridges slated for replacement were considered to be structurally deficient and/or functionally obsolete, and have reached the end of their life cycle. The bridges are still safe, but there are elements of the bridges that need to be monitored to maintain structural integrity. Many of the bridges have weight limits that do not allow heavier truck traffic to cross, and replacements will remove the postings. Froehling & Robertson, Inc. was contracted to provide geotechnical engineering on approximately 75 bridge replacement structures throughout the western and mountain region of the state.