Micropile Foundations For Support Of New Bridge Structures Over Abandoned Mine

Myers, Timothy J.
Organization: Deep Foundations Institute
Pages: 10
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2009
Expansion and the economic growth in the southwestern region of Missouri necessitated the expansion of State Route 249 and the construction of a new interchange to provide service to the Joplin, Missouri area. The project is located above a former lead and zinc mine in Jasper County, Missouri and includes a five bridge interchange connecting State Route 249 and US Route 171. The variable subsurface conditions, both natural and manmade, prompted the design team to use ground improvement via grouting and small diameter micropiles to provide support for several of the bridge foundations on the project. The scope of work included mine shaft closures, 56,000 ft of overburden and rock drilling, 11,139 ft of micropiles, 524 cy of balanced/stabilized high mobility grouts, and over 8,700 cy of low mobility grout. The selection of the grout used was based on the actual subsurface conditions. Low mobility grout (LMG) was used in voided conditions and for closure of the mine shafts encountered during the excavation. High mobility grout (HMG) was used in fractured rock with the goal of improving the mechanical properties of the rock underneath the future bridge footings and controlling grout volumes during micropile installation. The split spacing method was utilized for both LMG and HMG holes. Geology of the project site subsurface consisted of extremely variable bedrock with strong to very strong limestone, chert, breccia, extremely weak shale, and weak to strong sandstone. Previous activities associated with the mining disturbance (such as partial filled vertical mine shafts, shallow and deep mine horizons, modified hydrology including artesian conditions) further complicates the site subsurface conditions. Real time monitoring and recording of all drilling and grouting parameters was conducted to assist in the evaluation of in-situ geological properties of the site in order to modify the ground improvement and micropile program as necessary. This paper will discuss the design and execution of the ground improvement and micropile program. The project is an excellent example of the use of multiple ground improvement and foundation support techniques combined with real time data analysis to provide a foundation support solution for a complex geological environment.
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