• Harris County, Texas


  • Harris County Toll Road Authority (HCTRA) and TxDOT Houston District


CobbFendley provided structural design services for the design and PS&E of the direct connector from northbound SHTW to eastbound SH 225. This direct connector consisted of a 21-span, 2,066-foot-long bridge with TX54 girders.

This effort was part of an overall project with numerous consultants to design the interchange. Significant coordination was facilitated by our team, along with the other project team members and consultants to verify consistency and a comprehensive project. The direct connector bridge is bookended by two different subconsultants and the design required constant communication with those team members. Our team coordinated with the drainage subconsultant for placement of scuppers on the bridge to keep the water from ponding or draining on top of the roadway below. PVC pipes were provided in the columns to get the water from the deck to the ground. This direct connector bridge’s design included straddle bents provided over roadways to eliminate steel girders. To prevent sight distance and potential safety issues, CobbFendley designed an eccentric bent where straddle column blocked the line of sight for a driveway. Most of the columns are on 120-inch drilled shafts and there is one eccentric bent on a footing with four 60-inch drilled shafts.

Through coordination with HCTRA/TxDOT, our team implemented a straddle bent to the project to account for future TxDOT HOV lanes under the bridge. Our team coordinated with HCTRA/TxDOT a requested change in vertical clearance by reducing a cap 1-foot in depth. We also coordinated with HCTRA to develop the column and cap aesthetics with slight revisions for eccentric caps.