Innovative Heavy Lifting Solution Spans the Gap

VALPARAISO, IN— Engineered Rigging’s unique Cantilever Segmental Bridge Lift helped speed construction of the new 6,236-foot Cline Avenue Bridge which straddles the Indiana Harbor and Ship Canal in East Chicago, Indiana. Blocking the critical commercial shipping lane with a large barge and construction crane was not an option, so Engineered Rigging was called upon to develop an alternative solution to lift 19 concrete bridge segments, each weighing 75 tons, into place.

Engineered Rigging leveraged its knowledge of strand jacks, skidding and tensioning to design and build a safe, economical lifting solution that attached to the bridge’s edge and extended horizontally over the water (see photograph at left). The Cantilever Segmental Bridge Lift features four strand jacks, each with a lifting capacity of 17 to 1,405 tons, which allow for precise synchronous control in a compact footprint.

Crews positioned each 75-ton concrete segment on a small barge below the lift. The cantilevered design enabled Engineered Rigging to lift each span (see photograph below), secure it in place over the waterway and then reposition the Cantilever Segmental Bridge Lift to the newly installed span so that the next concrete section could be hoisted into position. The configuration for this project supported a lifting speed of 60 feet per hour and enabled crews to move all 19 concrete bridge segments in just 16 days while keeping the busy waterway open. The bridge opened on December 23, 2020.

“Working on the Cline Avenue Bridge allowed us to apply our specialized lift expertise to a project that will have a significant, positive impact on the economic development of Northwest Indiana,” said Engineered Rigging president, Christopher Cox, P.E. “The new bridge will be a lifeline to nearby Chicago and beyond for commercial and industrial businesses along Indiana’s Lake Michigan shoreline.”

Engineered Rigging provided engineering design, fabrication, heavy lifting equipment rentals and onsite technical support for this complex project. The design and fabrication were completed in 12 weeks at Engineered Rigging’s facility in Arkansas and the company’s engineers and equipment technicians were onsite at the bridge for a month for set-up of the lift system, 16 days dedicated to active lifting and tear-down of the equipment.

The Cantilever Segmental Bridge Lift system can be customized for bridge projects of any size in North and South America. In addition, Engineered Rigging has an array of heavy lifting equipment available for rental and sale, including the powerful and compact strand jacks. A key safety feature, up to 60 strand jacks can be operated simultaneously by a single operator from a central location to lift very large loads. For more information, visit www.EngineeredRigging.com.

About Engineered Rigging

Engineered Rigging (ER) is a global innovator in heavy lifting solutions. By leveraging decades of experience and a wealth of technical expertise, ER overcomes the most complex logistical challenges for a variety of industries. The company provides equipment rentals and sales, engineering services and the design and fabrication of custom lifting technology. For more information, visit www.EngineeredRigging.com.

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