Analysis of the Poplar Creek Box Culverts

Project No: 124654

Target Completion Date: May 31, 2026 Structures

About the project:

The objective of this study is to evaluate structural design of the precast concrete box culverts used on the VDOT construction project at Poplar Creek in Bristol District. With a maximum embankment height of 310 feet, it will be one of the deepest box culvert installations in the USA upon completion. Initially, VDOT considered a tall bridge for the mountainous region in southwest Virginia but a design change to box culverts was opted for based on the economic analysis. Significant uncertainties associated with the box culverts included the lack of generally accepted design guidelines stemming from limited practical knowledge of the actual soil stresses acting on buried structures under very high embankment fills. The proposed study is intended to address these specific knowledge gaps and develop recommendations for future VDOT designs of similar projects.

Project Team

Co-Principal Investigators

Project Monitor

Other Investigators

  • Eric Jacques, Alba Yerro-Colom, Ioannis Koutromanos

Last updated: April 2, 2024

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