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RINA completes reconstruction of Genoa’s Ponte Morandi


New Ponte Morandi

Photo credit: RINA.

RINA has completed main construction of the replacement bridge for the Polcevera Viaduct—also known as Ponte Morandi, named for the engineer who originally designed it—in Genoa, Italy, approximately 18 months after its predecessor tragically collapsed during a rainstorm, killing 43 people.

The final section of the bridge has been lowered into place. Engineers with RINA, the Genoa-based company commissioned to manage the demolition and rebuilding of the bridge, have spent more than 150,000 hours on the project, reportedly delivering it within budget and on time, despite the challenges of working during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The company’s responsibilities have spanned approval processes, operational activities, works supervision and health and safety management, the latter of which was particularly important once COVID-19 appeared in Italy. The company implemented risk-mitigation protocols, trained staff and provided mandatory self-protection measures, from systematic daily temperature monitoring to group shifts that allowed prompt isolation as needed.

The complex scale of the civil engineering project yielded more than 3,000 technical documents, approximately 600 audits of technical, quality, safety and environmental aspects of the plan and 2,000 inspections of the plants that produced the materials and structural elements, including sheet metal, concrete and reinforcement rods. The process involved more than 250 technical planning and execution and 220 technical operation co-ordination meetings.

“By applying advanced project management capabilities, it was possible to start the reconstruction of the new bridge at the same time as the demolition of the remains of the former bridge,” says Roberto Carpaneto, CEO of RINA Consulting. “Seeing the deck joining the sides of the valley is an emotional experience, in a positive way. It is a demonstration Italy can continue to function and be strong even in the most difficult moments. This viaduct is an important symbol.”

The new bridge is expected to open to the public in July.