Date of Award

Winter 2014

Project Type


Program or Major

Civil Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

Erin Santini-Bell

Second Advisor

Raymond A Cook

Third Advisor

Ricardo A Medina


In the current economic climate, bridge managers are continually working to maximize the impact of each expense. One way to keep costs down is to streamline maintenance procedures and to first address problems that require immediate attention. Thus, it is important to fully understand the behavior of the bridge. Typically, this assessment is based on regularly scheduled visual bridge inspections. Visual bridge inspections provide valuable information, but are subjective in nature and limited to areas that are visible. Instead bridges should be analyzed and evaluated as a system.

The current procedure used to evaluate bridges is based on assessing each element and requires significant efforts from a data management perspective. The process typically involves manually transcribing inspection field notes, manually calculating member section properties, and manually updating structural models for global analysis and eventual load rating. The research presented in this document describes a proof of concept application for the automatic updating of structural models with inspection report data and creates a platform for inclusion of load test data in structural condition assessment.