Connecticut Department of Transportation

Gold Star Bridge – VE Study

Groton-New London, CT

The Gold Star Bridge was constructed in the 1940’s and carries I-95 NB over the Thames River. The bridge consists of 31 spans, and has a total length of approximately 5,925 linear feet. The roadway width of 80 feet provides five 12-foot traffic lanes and two 10-foot shoulders. In the 1970’s, the bridge underwent a major rehabilitation. The adjacent “twin” Gold Star Bridge, which carries l-95 SB, was built during this rehabilitation project.

The Benesch team performed a Value Engineering (VE) Study for the rehabilitation of the Gold Star Bridge. The intent of the proposed rehabilitation is to extend the service life of the bridge for approximately 25 years. The scope of the rehabilitation included a complete deck replacement, steel strengthening, bearing replacement and limited painting. The proposed total construction cost for the rehabilitation of the longest bridge structure in Connecticut is approximately $200 million. The VE team provided six alternative proposals and numerous design suggestions for CTDOT’s consideration.

The most significant finding of the VE study, and the key to unlocking the potential savings offered by the proposals, is the potential benefit of incorporating a crossover to the Southbound bridge. A presentation was made to the client at the end of the study, and a VE report was submitted. The VE study was performed under Benesch’s 5-year task based services contract to provide constructability reviews, value engineering analysis and other related tasks associated with improving the quality of contract documents as part of the Department’s Quality Assurance initiative.

Project highlights

  • Function, structural and cost analyses performed to develop alternatives
  • Presentation & report preparation of recommended alternatives