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Steel bridge easier and less costly than its concrete twin

September 17, 2014


Way out in Wyoming, there’s a tale of two bridges that bears telling. These bridges sit tightly, side by side, each spanning the same distance on parallel rail spurs. Each doing the same job of allowing vehicular traffic to pass under heavy coal trains enroute to the load-out facility at the generating plant. 

The only difference is that the older bridge is concrete and the new bridge is a Prefabricated Steel Bridge from Big R. But that difference saved the owner a great deal of time and money over a similar concrete alternative.

The Laramie River Generating Station is owned by Basin Electric Power Cooperative, a major player in the Powder River Basin. The additional rail spur loop was required for more unloading capacity to relieve congestion on the original spur.    

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Lightweight, easy to install, E-80 loading

This 168' modular design was built in the controlled manufacturing environment of our Greeley, CO facility and shipped on flatbed trucks to the site. It was installed in three spans on concrete piers and abutments that were designed by Big R’s engineering team as part of a complete package. The new bridge is lighter and faster to install than its concrete twin, yet it offers heavy-duty E-80 railway design loading capacity — all for much less than its concrete alternative.

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Project Name: Laramie River Station Loadout Bridge

Location: Wheatland, WY

Owner: Basin Electric Power Cooperative  

Contractor: Earth Work Solutions   
Product: Vehicular Modular Bridge, Pier and Abutment Design

Application: Railroad Overpass

Dimensions: 168' Long (Three spans: 33', 102', 33') by 12' Wide, E-80 Railway Design Loading