The Paranaíba Bridge, Brazil

Photo: COWI
The bridge under construction
Brazil's national road N 148 crosses the Paranaíba river close to the small town Porto Alencastro and connects the two federal states Minas Gerais in the east and Mato Grosso do Sul on the west side of the river, about 850 km west of Belo Horizonte, the capital of Minas Gerais.

The existing ferry connection was replaced by a cable-stayed bridge, which was built between 1994-2001 by the Brazilian contractor Construtora Queiroz Galvão.

The bridge has a main span of 350 metres and a total length of 663 meteres. It carries two road lanes across the river.

Structural elements

The structural elements are:

  • piled tower foundations in the river
  • a concrete tower and concrete deck structure
  • a deck cast rigidly into both abutment structures - one fixed and one movable, thus avoiding pendulums or special bearings

All foundations are founded on solid basalt rock formations. Parallel strand cables are used for the stays and attached every 10 metres to the concrete deck. These are individually protected against corrosion.

The Brazilian consultant NORONHA  Engenharia S.A., Rio de Janeiro, was the designer and supervisor for the project on behalf of the Federal Highway Authority DER-MG in Minas Gerais.

Independent review

COWI was retained to assist in the development of the basic design of the erection traveller for the deck construction, and to carry out an independent review of the final and construction stage design.

Furthermore, COWI worked with NORONHA on issues related to wind-induced vibrations and monitoring of the bridge structure. The traveller design was developed in collaboration with Danish contractor Monberg & Thorsen, and the review was conducted by COWI's bridge division.

LAST UPDATED: 31.03.2017