Much to discuss at the opening colloquium on 22 November 2016
The city of Leipzig and its Transport and Civil Engineering Office, together with the Leipzig Institute for Materials Research and Testing for the Construction Industry (MFPA Leipzig GmbH), are starting up an expert group to discuss the subject of “Municipal Bridges”.
“We want to exchange ideas and confer with other municipalities, but also with experts from agencies, engineering firms, institutes and testing authorities”, said Dr. Michael Schimansky, Head of the City of Leipzig Office of Economic Development, to open the Bridges colloquium that took place on 22 November 2016.
There is a considerable restoration backlog in the transport infrastructure, even for structures under the responsibility of municipal corporations.
“This statement applies in particular to civil engineering structures such as bridges”, according to Dr. Hartmut Mangold, State Secretary at the State Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Transport in the Free State of Saxony. In his contribution to the discussion on the subject of “road construction in Saxony”, Dr. Mangold presented the duties and objectives of the Free State of Saxony for the 25 participants of the expert group and opened up the event, which was started as a forum for discussion, at MFPA Leipzig GmbH.
Prof. Reuschel elaborated on this, stating that “when deciding whether bridges require maintenance work, strengthening work or rebuilding, the assessment of the current load-bearing capacity of the bridge and a forecast of how this will progress over time are fundamentally important in ensuring that upcoming investments can be made in a commercially relevant, economical and sustainable manner”.
According to Robert Herold, Test Engineer at MFPA Leipzig GmbH, “The basis for such an assessment is competency, experience and having the necessary testing equipment, in conjunction with static calculations”. He presented the modified BELFA load-testing vehicle to the audience and talked about its successful deployment on the Gustav-Esche bridge in Leipzig.
As part of his presentation on the “Future suitability of existing municipal bridges”, Klaus Barthel of the Leipzig Transport and Civil Engineering Office said, “For Leipzig, assessing the condition of the infrastructure is one of the most important areas of focus for the city’s overall investment planning, both today and in the coming years”.
The participants in the “Municipal Road Bridges” working group agreed that the exchange of experience and opinions was important for their daily work and arranged to continue it in regular follow-up events with different areas of focus. Please contact Prof. Dr.-Ing. Elke Reuschel if you have any questions or comments for the next colloquium in 2017 or if you are interested in taking part.