The quality of the concrete finish is largely affected by the form face, the concrete mix itself, and the vibration techniques. VPS form panels are designed to have single joints where the plywood from one panel meets the plywood of the adjacent panel, resulting in clean, visually appealing lines. For a decorative finish or form liner on a column, it is easier to attach and remove that form liner from the plywood face. Resin-coated form ply has the durability for use on heavy civil projects up to 70 pours, and in the event of damage to the form face, the replace - ment of plywood is a simple and practical solution to meet the highest standards for concrete finish requirements. Ongoing Analysis Additional aspects of a project must be considered when selecting a formwork system and designing a bridge. While these considerations may not lead to the selection of a specific product, it is critical to be aware of the impact of each on the crew, the jobsite, and the end result: • Access Restrictions. Is there space to lay down equipment, or does it need to come off the truck and directly onto the structure? What does access to the structure look like? • Vehicle Clearance. Where is the traffic envelope under a new bridge cap while under construction? The falsework must not interfere for active traffic lanes and for tractor trailers to travel safely underneath. • Crane Size Required. How heavy is the equipment? Is there an op - portunity to save on crane rentals to support the construction of col- umns and caps with a lighter-weight system, or is it more important to minimize the number of picks? • Duration of Project. How long will the project take to complete? Is there risk of schedule overrun that can be mitigated by a system purchase? Could a system purchase reduce cost on upcoming projects in the pipeline? • Cycle Time and Schedule. To win projects, builders must find ways to compress scheduled activities and reduce man hours to remain competitive and profitable. What system will offer the best opportunity to meet and beat estimated productivity and cycle times to keep the project on schedule and on budget? The Time is Now Communities large and small across the country may finally see improvements to aging bridges, roadways, and tunnels thanks to the historic investment in infrastructure. For developers, specifiers, and contractors charged with doing the work, the challenges remain the same: Drive efficiency to accelerate project timelines, and ensure the safety of workers during the con- struction phase. Safer, faster, and more flexible bridge construction means tapping into the latest product innovations that break the mold of the past and are primed to address today’s complicated construction paradigm.
With a large, comfortable working platform with fall protection and walkway brackets and handrails that install within an hour from the ground, VPS delivers safety from the first step before equipment is lifted to its working position. The system is designed to split into two pieces to cycle by accessing and operating bolts on the top of the plat- form with handrails. There is no need to access any part of the system from underneath while the system is suspended by a crane, and the system is mechanically stripped from the concrete in a fully controlled manner that does not rely on the self-weight of the system. • Vendor Experience. What experience does the vendor bring to the project? How can they help mitigate any risk associated with building bridges? PERI collaborated with customers on projects and worked with indus - try leaders to develop VPS to address the bulk of the bridge market. PERI has more than 40 years of infrastructure formwork experience in the United States, and 50 years globally, on nearly all bridge construc - tion methods. VPS was designed with feedback from the market and PERI’s expertise. • Tied-in-Place or Prefabricated Reinforcement Bars. How will the steel rebar be installed? If the rebar will be tied in-place, the crew will benefit from the open workspace to store and handle rebar. If a cage is prefabricated, the ac - cess to tie column rebar to cap rebar is simplified. • Total Equipment Needed. Can the vendor provide a solution to re- duce the total amount of formwork on the jobsite? VPS was designed for versatility and simplifying material flow at the jobsite. The system requires less equipment to achieve the same cycle as compared to existing methods. This translates into less equipment demand and less material sorting and handling on a daily basis. • Concrete Finish Quality. What type of finish can be expected? How much work needs to be done to make it acceptable by the owner?
DAN STRAUB is civil segment manager at PERI USA
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