Army Corps of Engineers, Huntington District
Kanawha River, West Virginia
Burgess & Niple led the design of the upper guard wall replacement at the London Locks and Dam. The existing guard wall has been identified as being in failure mode and therefore scheduled for removal. Located on the Kanawha River near Montgomery, West Virginia, the original construction of the London Locks and Dam was completed in 1934. The upper guard wall replacement will coincide with improvements to the existing locks that will allow an increase in the number of barges passed in each lockage.
The new upper guard wall is approximately 550 feet in length. The guard wall structure consists of a sheetpile nose cell, five piers, and five precast, post-tensioned concrete box wall beams with flow skirts. The nose cell is designed to support the guard wall beam and resist any direct impact forces from barges.
Plans were developed for two alternative guard wall beam support systems. In one alternative, each pier will consist of a precast, post-tensioned concrete cap beam supported on two drilled shafts socketed into bedrock. Drilled shafts were designed to resist lateral and axial loadings from barge impact and environmental forces. The precast cap beams will be lowered over the drilled shafts and grouted into place. A thrust block is used to anchor the guard wall beams to each pier.
The other alternative support system for the guard wall beams consists of sheetpile cells at each pier location. The sheetpile cells were designed as gravity structures. The cells will be filled with tremie concrete. Design work for both alternatives was carried out in a manner that precludes the need for expensive full-depth dewatering.
This project includes access for barge crews and other minor improvements. The barge crew access platform is being designed under close coordination with the Corps that will allow barge crews to readily disembark regardless of the barge draft. Work also includes quantity estimates and specifications development.