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WRA at the Ports 2016 Conference.

Baltimore, MD – WRA will take part in the Ports 2016 conference, taking place on June 12-15, 2016 in New Orleans, LA. The tri-annual conference is hosted by The World Association for Waterborne Transport Infrastructure (PIANC) and the Coasts, Oceans, Ports, and Rivers Institute (COPRI), a semi-autonomous institute of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), the country's oldest national engineering society.

WRA employees Wayne Chang, Siva Kesevan, Matthew McCarty, Patrick O’Brien, Thomas Ripley, Cameron Troxel, and William Young, have submitted work to be presented at the conference. WRA will give four presentations: A Case Study and Recommendation for Large Diameter FRP Monopile Dolphin Systems, Post Hurricane Sandy Beach Erosion Protection, Replacement of Mallory Pier at United States Merchant Marine Academy, and Selection, Design, and Construction of Two Fender System Replacements: Case Study and Recommendations.

The first article, written by Matthew McCarty, Patrick O’Brien, Thomas Ripley, and Cameron Troxel, discusses the design and use of novel new for ferry berthing. The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) has developed a dolphin replacement program for the Jamestown-Scotland Ferry that utilizes composite materials to maximize lifecycle cost effectiveness and minimize service disruptions while maintaining the safe operation of the ferry system. The program utilizes the latest Fiber Reinforced Polymer (FRP) pile technologies, materials, and production capabilities. As a result, over 1850 existing fracture-prone timber piles will be replaced with 35 large-diameter FRP monopile dolphins, with an expected lifecycle cost equal to one-third of the cost of the current system. When construction is complete in spring of 2017, the system will be the first of its kind in the United States. The presentation will address the progression of the Jamestown Ferry Dolphin replacement project from study through design and beginning of construction. Owners of ferry systems and other berthing dolphin structures will benefit from the shared information and recommendations. The project and lead author have also been recognized as the 2016 recipient of the PIANC De Paepe-Willems Award given internationally for advancing the state of practice in maritime infrastructure engineering.

The next article, written by William Young, Siva Kesevan and Wayne Chang, discusses the effects Hurricane Sandy had on the beaches in Delaware, including the beach adjacent to the newly constructed Charles W. Cullen Bridge, which stretches across the Indian River Inlet along Delaware State Route 1. The presentation will also discuss the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) plan in which they assembled a team of engineers and construction contractors to engage in emergency repair services. The team developed a plan to reestablish protection for the northern approach under incredible time constraints. The design and construction efforts will be of interest to conference attendees because it shows the speed at which a project can be planned, designed, and built through cooperation when time is the highest priority.

The next article, written by Thomas Ripley and Wayne Chang, discusses the Mallory Pier at the United States Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA) in Kings Point, New York, which had fallen into a state of disrepair and could no longer safely fill its role in USMMA’s training mission; with portions of the original 600 foot long by 20 foot wide timber pier construction dating to the 1940’s. The presentation will discuss the modernization of the Academy’s waterfront, from study through ribbon cutting, in which a new pier was designed and constructed as one of the capital improvement projects implemented by the Maritime Administration (MARAD) under United States Department of Transportation.

The final article, written by Matthew McCarty and Jeremy Schlussel, discusses the Selection, Design, and Construction of Two Fender System Replacements, for protection of bridge piers in navigable waterways in Virginia. Many bridges constructed over navigable waterways in the United States during the highway construction boom of the 20th century still have their original fender systems. These were often constructed of timber and integrated with bridge pier foundations, making them very difficult to effectively repair or replace. Furthermore, when the original systems are replaced, standards adopted since the original construction may require a significantly more robust fender system replacement. The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) has begun to develop and implement a program for identifying and replacing deteriorated bridge fenders. Design strategies for this replacement program are complicated by low overhead clearance under bridge decks, need to maintain channel width, presence of large fast-moving vessels, and presence of underwater cables and obstructions. Additionally, using environmentally inert materials to provide a low-maintenance system is a top priority. The presentation will discuss a case study addressing the progression of two fender replacement projects through study, design, and construction. The presentation will contain system recommendations for owners of aging bridge pier fender systems, as well as design and constructability recommendations for design professionals.