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Author Topic: Unusual Grooving of Bridge Pavement  (Read 1712 times)

InterstateGuy

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Unusual Grooving of Bridge Pavement
« on: March 16, 2017, 08:13:34 PM »

There is this quite unusuaul but very cool bridge in Pennsylvania going Westbound on I-80 that makes two sounds when driving over it. Its at milepost 211 in Milton, PA. The first is a very low pitch electric-buzzing sound that i've never heard until I went over it. Then the sound switches halfway over the bridge to that higher pitched hollow-whine sound that is usually used by NYSDOT. The two sounds make it quite cool. I call it the sci-fi bridge. Have any of you been over this bridge before? It is not anything big but its one of my favorites. Heres what the grooves look like... https://www.google.com/maps/@41.0519099,-76.8540359,3a,15y,203.86h,56.98t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sl5p1V87OAR7-PMZo5_w6nw!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!6m1!1e1
Here's a cleare shot of the unusual groove pattern... https://www.google.com/maps/@41.0516196,-76.8553741,3a,15y,2.37h,65.5t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s4LDtqGY0u4Z-n1IgbE2sag!2e0!7i13312!8i6656
Which leads me to the next question. if anyone out there knows more about grooving patterns, is there any other state that uses this type of pattern? I have a video going over this bridge but i don't know how to upload it from Windows Live Movie Maker. Anyone know how to do that? Also last question, any of you ever driven on any cool or unusual sounding grooved concrete?
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Michael

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Re: Unusual Grooving of Bridge Pavement
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2017, 09:35:37 PM »

There are at least two threads on the forum about grooved concrete:
Sound when driving over concrete pavement
The "hum" of a concrete highway surface

The following is the post I made in the second thread, which starts with a quote of my post in the first thread:
When I saw this thread, I remembered posting in another thread about the sound of grooved concrete, and after some searching, I found it.  Here's my post from that thread:

After being around this forum for a while, I found out that I wasn't the only one that liked the sound of concrete pavement.  I even have a friend who admitted to liking it when I asked after they commented on the noise while going over a bridge.  I did some digging to find an old post I made about concrete pavement:

But I LOVE the ka-thump ka-thump noise!  Could we get them to stop?  Putting in the rebars defeats the point of having a concrete road (the cool sounds) in the first place!

You'll like this video then.  I like the whistling noise, myself.

When I was reading US-43|72's post (reply #8 on the first page) about different pavement types, I did some Googling, and found this page from WSDOT about pavement types.

The video I linked to is a northbound drive on the I-81 viaduct in Syracuse, and is a typical sound for NYSDOT bridges.  Between 12 and 16 seconds, the pitch is higher than normal.  The WSDOT page covers various pavement types (asphalt and concrete) and has photos of them.

During the 2009-2011 Thruway reconstruction between Exits 39 and 40, they used concrete pavement with longitudinal tining.  I was hoping for transverse tining so it would whistle.  The longitudinal tining has a growling sound, which can be heard in these two YouTube videos:
(skip to 51 seconds in to hear it without music)

When I went on a road trip to Atlanta in January, I noticed that concrete pavement was fairly common from Virginia south, and much of it had transverse tining.  Some of it was old enough to have tire tracks with worn off tining.

Some railroad crossings with metal plates have a whistling sound.  Here's a Street View image of one east of Auburn on NY 5.

Lastly, while going to Binghamton with a friend one time, I knew he was speeding because the whistle of the bridges was higher pitched than normal.  When that same friend calls me from his car, I can sometimes figure out where he is based on the length of the whistling sound if I know where he's going.



I've always enjoyed it, but I don't know how it occurs. Some bridges in my area are being replaced by concrete bridges that lack the "hum" and have more of a "rolling" or scraping sound if you know what I mean.

My best guess would be the tire forcing air into the groove, then forcing out the sides below the tire.  I think I know what sound you're referring to, but I couldn't find a video of it.  Do the new bridge decks have longitudinal tining like this?  It seems to be the new NYSDOT standard for new and re-decked bridges.

I went on what's now I-86 east of Corning for the first time in 1998 or so.  I was so excited that there was a section where the whole road whistled instead of just the bridge decks.  When I was on the same section on the way to Atlanta in January 2015 (same trip mentioned in my post I quoted above), I was disappointed that the road didn't whistle anymore.  It was surprisingly loud even without tining.

When I was visiting my friend who now lives in the Toledo, Ohio area at the end of May, I noticed quite a difference in their concrete pavement.  Bridge decks and some concrete pavement had a growl/buzz sound, which can be heard here at 14:12:

The I-75 southbound frontage road for exits 195 A-B had a weird combination of buzzing and whistling from the different sections of concrete.

As for the Street View links you posted, the first portion of the bridge is random transverse tining, which is supposed to reduce noise.

EDIT: I forgot to mention NY 695 northbound over the CSX rail yard just outside of Syracuse.  It starts at a higher then normal pitch, then it drops (still higher than normal) toward the end.  Heading southbound sounds normal.  The bridge is at 1:09 in this video:
« Last Edit: March 16, 2017, 09:45:15 PM by Michael »
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InterstateGuy

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Re: Unusual Grooving of Bridge Pavement
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2017, 11:22:58 AM »

Thats interesting that it is supposed to reduce the noise because it was quite as loud as the whining sound. Just at a much lower pitch. It sounded very cool when going over it. Very electric sounding. I wish NYSDOT would groove roads like that. Wish i could put up the video I took going over it. But I don't have youtube. Yes i noticed that about 695. The same can also be heard on I-81 Syracuse on the viaduct. sound jumps from high to low. i always loved that whining sound you get going over NY bridges, which brings me to another reason i thought that bridge in PA was interesting, because they usually don't groove their bridges the way NY, NJ and some other states do. Its mostly the whistle and other types of random lining.
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InterstateGuy

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Re: Unusual Grooving of Bridge Pavement
« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2017, 04:57:19 PM »

Well it took me some time but ive finally found an easy way to put up the video of the bridge. My unused facebook page. I nicknamed the post alien bridge because of its weird noises.

https://www.facebook.com/john.cav.94/videos/411304055916890/
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Michael

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Re: Unusual Grooving of Bridge Pavement
« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2019, 08:46:34 PM »

Wow, a two year bump!

Anyway, I drove over a weird sounding bridge on Friday night.  This bridge on NY 38 north of Port Byron has been redecked since the Street View car went through, and like all newer NYSDOT redeckings, it had longitudinal tining.  The weird thing though is that it sounded like a quieter version of transverse tining at 65 MPH, even though I was going 55.
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InterstateGuy

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Re: Unusual Grooving of Bridge Pavement
« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2019, 01:29:28 PM »

That is very strange, especially for longituidnal grooves! Little to no sound is usually heard, I wonder if there were very small transverse grooves not easy to see. Also, I dont know if that link I sent two years ago worked but just in case it didnt, I caught a better video of the bridge in PA before it was redecked to boring asphalt :meh: (the road wasnt even in horrible shape).

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ET21

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Re: Unusual Grooving of Bridge Pavement
« Reply #6 on: August 16, 2019, 04:28:40 PM »

I-88 has this similar sound change over the Fox River. Same thing with Willow Springs Road over the Des Plaines and the I&M canal
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