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Level II scour analysis for Bridge 37 (BARTTH00080037) on Town Highway 8, crossing Willoughby River, Barton, Vermont

Open-File Report 96-405

Prepared in cooperation with Vermont Agency of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration
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Abstract

This report provides the results of a detailed Level II analysis of scour potential at structure BARTTH00080037 on town highway 8 crossing the Willoughby River, Barton, Vermont (figures 1–8). A Level II study is a basic engineering analysis of the site, including a quantitative analysis of stream stability and scour (U.S. Department of Transportation, 1993). Results of a Level I scour investigation also are included in Appendix E of this report. A Level I investigation provides a qualitative geomorphic characterization of the study site. Information on the bridge, gleaned from Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTAOT) files, was compiled prior to conducting Level I and Level II analyses and is found in Appendix D.


The site is in the New England Upland section of the New England physiographic province of north-central Vermont in the town of Barton. The 60.4-mi2 drainage area is in a predominantly rural and forested basin. In the vicinity of the study site, the banks have sparse to moderate woody vegetation coverage.


In the study area, the Willoughby River is probably incised, has a sinuous channel with a slope of approximately 0.009 ft/ft, an average channel top width of 108 ft and an average channel depth of 6 ft. The predominant channel bed material is cobble (D50 is 95.1 mm or 0.312 ft). The geomorphic assessment at the time of the Level I and Level II site visit on October 20, 1994, indicated that the reach was stable.


The town highway 8 crossing of the Willoughby River is a 96-ft-long, two-lane bridge consisting of one 94-foot steel-beam span (Vermont Agency of Transportation, written communication, August 4, 1994). The bridge is supported by vertical, concrete abutments with wingwalls. The channel is skewed approximately 15 degrees to the opening while the opening-skew-to-roadway is 10 degrees.


No scour was reported in the channel or along abutments or wingwalls during the Level I assessment. Type-2 stone fill (less than 24 inches diameter) was reported at each abutment and all four wingwalls. Additional details describing conditions at the site are included in the Level II Summary and Appendices D and E.


Scour depths and rock rip-rap sizes were computed using the general guidelines described in Hydraulic Engineering Circular 18 (Richardson and others, 1993). Scour depths were calculated assuming an infinite depth of erosive material and a homogeneous particle-size distribution. Data in appendix D (Vermont Agency of Transportation, written communication, August 4, 1994) indicate that the right abutment may be founded on or near marble bedrock which may limit scour depths. Bedrock was not detected by borings in the vicinity of the left abutment. The scour analysis results are presented in tables 1 and 2 and a graph of the scour depths is presented in figure 8.


Contraction scour for all modelled flows was 0 ft. Abutment scour ranged from 7.3 to 10.7 ft and the worst-case abutment scour occurred at the 500-year discharge. Additional information on scour depths and depths to armoring are included in the section titled “Scour Results”. Scoured-streambed elevations, based on the calculated scour depths, are presented in tables 1 and 2. A cross-section of the scour computed at the bridge is presented in figure 8. Scour depths were calculated assuming an infinite depth of erosive material and a homogeneous particle-size distribution.


It is generally accepted that the Froehlich equation (abutment scour) gives “excessively conservative estimates of scour depths” (Richardson and others, 1993, p. 47). Usually, computed scour depths are evaluated in combination with other information including (but not limited to) historical performance during flood events, the geomorphic stability assessment, existing scour protection measures, and the results of the hydraulic analyses. Therefore, scour depths adopted by VTAOT may differ from the computed values documented herein.

Study Area

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Level II scour analysis for Bridge 37 (BARTTH00080037) on Town Highway 8, crossing Willoughby River, Barton, Vermont
Series title:
Open-File Report
Series number:
96-405
Year Published:
1996
Language:
English
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location:
Pembroke, NH
Description:
iv, 48 p.
Country:
United States
State:
Vermont
City:
Barton
Other Geospatial:
Willoughby River
Scale:
24000