Rehabilitation of the Frederick Douglass Bridge over the Anacostia River


District of Columbia Department of Transportation


Washington, D.C.

Key Challenges & Project Details

  • Primary part of Washington, DC’s ongoing efforts to revitalize the Anacostia Waterfront
  • A primary artery — one of only three highway bridges — leading into the nation’s Capital
  • Required completion of demolition/reconstruction in a 62-day window
  • The bridge was reopened eight days ahead of schedule
  • Replaced 1,200 LF of the existing 3,000 LF structure with an at-grade roadway and architectural enhancements designed to coincide with the new Washington Nationals Stadium
  • Lowered three spans (275 LF) of the bridge into a new configuration
  • Overcame limited space/accessibility issues to install steel erection work under the bridge prior to closure to create a new ramp from street level
  • Utilized 15 12’ tall jacking towers and 30 jacks to lower the bridge
  • Rehabilitation of the steel superstructure
  • 900 substructure steel repairs
  • Non-reclaimable materials were removed under the supervision of the DC Department of the Environment to special contaminated material handling facilities
  • 15 abandoned underground fuel storage tanks were also removed
  • A design was planned and implemented to safely remove contaminated soils around the bridge and replace with clean structural backfill

Awards Received

  • 2008 WTS-DC Chapter Innovative Transportation Solutions Award
  • 2008 American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC), National Engineering Excellence Awards — National Finalist in Transportation Category
  • 2008 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), National Capital (DC) Section — Outstanding Civil Engineering Project
  • 2008 American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC), Maryland Chapter — Outstanding Project of the Year in Transportation Category
  • 2007 Mid-Atlantic Construction Best of 2007 Bridge Rehabilitation

Design Partner

Ammann & Whitney
RK & K