Bridge Design as Craft: Insights from 30 Years of Practice and Teaching

Challenges and Innovation in Civil and Environmental Engineering and Earth Sciences SPRING 2021 Seminar Series


Bridge Design as Craft: Insights from 30 Years of Practice and Teaching

Theodore P. Zoli, III, PE, National Bridge Chief Engineer, HNTB

3:55 p.m.–4:55 p.m., March 18, 2021   |   Zoom

Contact Diane Westerink for Zoom link

This lecture considers what informs bridge design through the lens of completed projects. There are many aspects of design that are not well-represented in the way we educate, research, develop, and ultimately implement design requirements.

This lecture is a critical evaluation of what we might do differently to arrive at safer, more durable, reliable, and innovative bridges. The lecture will focus on overlooked aspects to bridge construction, particularly the know-how that is necessary to fabricate, transport, and erect bridge components into an integrated system and how innovation in this space can yield new ideas in bridge design. Using craft as a model for know-how across all aspects of delivering a bridge project gives designers new opportunities for innovation and new areas to consider in research and practice.

Theodore Zoli

Theodore Zoli serves as the technical director of HNTB’s bridge practice nationwide. Zoli received a B.S. (1988) from Princeton University and an M.S. (1989) from the California Institute of Technology. He has led the design of many innovative, first of their kind bridges throughout the United States. He has brought new ideas to design across a wide range of structure types including long-span cable-stayed and network arch bridges, movable, rail, and pedestrian bridges. In September 2009, Zoli was made a MacArthur Fellow by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. In 2012, Zoli was selected as ENR’s Award of Excellence winner, considered the construction industry’s most prestigious honor.

Contact Diane Westerink for Zoom link.