Did you know that beam bridges are the simplest and oldest bridge-type around? That’s because they are an ideal economical solution for pedestrian, trail, or greenway crossing. You can even design them to handle vehicle traffic.

Continue reading to learn more beam bridge facts that can help you determine if it’s the right bridge type for your project.

Interesting Beam Bridge Facts

Beam bridges are a short-span bridge that offers a boardwalk-style design without the need for a railing or curb. They are also known as stringer bridges or girder bridges. 

Below are additional beam bridge facts. 

Facts about Beam Bridge Design for Footbridges

  • Uses multiple horizontal beam members with abutments or piers located at each end
  • Accommodates weight by using the beam to push straight down onto the piers
  • The strength element is the geometry of the main support beams
  • Can access previously inaccessible lands
  • Allows pedestrians to see stunning views
  • Works well for short span needs 
  • Increases trail accessibility to anyone who is disabled
  • Offers year-round access to flooded areas or crossing over ephemeral (seasonal) streams
  • Select from various material options
    • Fiber reinforced polymer (FRP)
    • Steel
    • Wood 
    • Aluminum 
    • Concrete 

Facts About FRP Beam Bridges 

FRP is an emerging bridge material that offers many benefits to its users. Here are some facts about FRP beam bridges you might find interesting.

  • Corrosion-resistant material
  • UV-resistant material
  • 100+ year lifespan for each bridge
  • Bridges have ongoing maintenance
  • FRP weighs approximately 125 pounds per cubic foot (a quarter of steel’s weight)
  • Each FRP member is lightweight enough to be hand-carried or airlifted 
  • Bridges can be assembled using an inexperienced crew
  • Bridges can be easily built it in remote or hard to access locations 

Facts about Working with Areté Structures  

As a certified small business, learn what you can expect if you work with Areté Structures for your FRP footbridge needs. 

  • We manufacture all our bridges in Boone, NC 
  • We partner exclusively with Strongwell (the world’s largest FRP manufacturer)
  • Our sister company, Areté Engineers, can assist with the planning and design phases
  • We deliver bridges anywhere in the continental United States and Canada 
  • Custom-design a bridge using the Allowable Stress Design (ASD) Method and/or AASHTO specifications
  • Areté Engineers optimizes design tsize and loading conditions to be cost-effective 
  • Select from three structural design options:
  • We use precision CNC machinery to fabricate all critical bridge members
  • We label bridge parts at the shop for easy assembly
  • We use critical component pre-assembly certification to guarantee fit and function before shipment
  • If we deliver your bridge unassembled, you’ll receive assembly plans and field instructions
  • We can send it fully assembled bridge segments up to 10 feet wide and 35 feet long
  • We have an on-call commitment to answer questions during any part of the assembly process 

Don’t Delay, Contact Areté Structures for Your Next Beam Bridge 

Now that you understand more about beam bridges, the advantages of using FRP, and what you can expect if you work with Areté Structures, contact us. We can help you get started on your next bridge design. If you already know your specifications, then request an official quote.