Engineering Project Case Studies | Erdman Anthony

Bridge Rehabilitation

Located within a state-owned campground in the Catskill Mountains and built in 1865, the Beaverkill Covered Timber Bridge is widely regarded as a symbol of Sullivan County’s rustic charm. The original one-lane timber bridge, which was listed on the State and National Registers of Historic Places in 2007, was deteriorating due to age, wood rot, and insect damage. The project presented numerous complexities, including the bridge’s 19th-century foundation, the fast moving waters of Beaverkill River, and requests from various stakeholders that some of the structure’s original stone and wood be salvaged.

NYSDOT Region 9 selected Erdman Anthony as prime consultant to design the rehabilitation of the bridge. Our team provided preliminary and final design services, prepared record plans for the existing bridge, established a Level I load rating for the structure, identified a rehabilitation alternative, and assessed environmental impacts.

In consideration of its historic value, the rehabilitated bridge our team designed boasts many of its original characteristics, including a lattice truss design, fanlike radiating planks in the end panels, and some of the original wood and foundation stone. The bridge’s new guide rails were made to look rustic.
Notably, this project required building a temporary steel truss bridge inside the covered bridge. Once in place, the covered bridge was lifted off its foundation by roughly three inches so that the wooden dowels could be removed and the timbers replaced.

Our team also addressed the client’s request to unearth a stone wall on one approach to the bridge. Our design detailed uncovering the stones, storing them, and reusing them to re-create a retained approach embankment, as illustrated in a NYS Conservationist magazine article from July 1957.

Despite fluctuating budgets and timelines, Erdman Anthony delivered this project three months early and on budget.

The Beaverkill Covered Bridge rehabilitation has improved safety for both vehicle and pedestrian traffic while preserving its historic character. 


Award icon
2018 Platinum Award
American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) of New York
Paul Presutti, PE, PTOE
Paul Presutti, PE, PTOE
 585-427-8888 x 1093