Marquette Interchange Bridge Preservation


2019 Engineering Excellence Award | State Finalist

Entering Firm: Michael Baker International Inc.
Client: Wisconsin Department of Transportation
Category: Transportation

The Marquette Interchange is one of the most important transportation systems in Wisconsin and elongating its service life is extremely important. To properly preserve major interchanges, a maintenance schedule is planned years ahead of time. But any updates or maintenance must also keep traffic open on a system that carries over 300,000 vehicles a day.

Michael Baker worked with the Wisconsin Highway Research Program to determine which overlay would work best. An overlay prevents corrosion of steel reinforcements in the interchange and is critical to the overall lifespan of the project. The design team selected a polyester polymer concrete (PPC) overlay because its application would minimize disruption and best preserve the steel in the bridges. PPC overlays had only been used on one test project in Wisconsin before but through collaboration with the client and other projects the design team successfully implemented the new overlay. The experiences with this project opened the door to the use of PPC on other projects in Wisconsin. The PPC overlay allowed the design team to carefully manage disruptions on a very busy transportation corridor and across 30 bridges. These bridges will now reach their 75-year expected lifespan.

Michael Baker utilized a new product to meet the needs of one of the state’s biggest interchanges. By using PPC overlay, the interchange is preserved for long-term future use.

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