By: Contech Engineered Solutions
The American Center for Mobility (ACM), recently built a U.S.-based connected and automated vehicle (CAV) research facility in Ypsilanti, Michigan, the heart of the automotive industry. The Center is a proving ground for CAV product testing, development, validation, and certification. The 500-acre site includes a driverless 2.5-mile highway loop, two double overpasses, a railroad crossing, intersections, roundabouts, and a 704-foot long curved tunnel.
The curved tunnel, the largest of its kind, provided by Contech Engineered Solutions, is 704 foot long, 49′-5″ span x 24′-0″ rise Deep Corrugated Structural Plate tunnel with 9 – 4.6 degree elbows. In the preliminary design stages, the engineer coordinated with Contech’s team on different tunnel concepts. The ultimate goal was to create a tunnel where an automated vehicle enters the tunnel, but, cannot identify the exit. Thus, the design of a lengthy, curved tunnel was paramount to the project.
The Deep Corrugated Structural Plate solution was identified as the most cost effective option available to the market. The custom-shaped design was able to meet the required clearance box, include elbows to transition the tunnel and create a lightweight design allowing for the use of a cast-in-place spread foundation. In addition, the entire structure was designed for a Class II natural sand backfill, an economical, locally available material procured by the contractors. The final design of the Deep Corrugated Structural Plate structure included cast-in-place headwalls, a lighting and mechanical system, and external waterproofing.
By utilizing a 2-Radius Arch system, ACM was able to significantly reduce overall construction costs with material, foundation, and installation savings.
For more information on this and the many other benefits of Corrugated Steel Pipe, contact us by calling (972) 850-1907 or visiting NCSPA.org.