An overpass is a road, bridge, railway, or comparable structure that crosses over another road or railway. Overpasses allow for the unimpeded flow of vehicles, pedestrians, and wildlife by offering a safe passage method that separates movement.

Bay Shore Overpass Pedestrian Bridge

Uses For Overpasses

Overpasses are typically designed to improve the flow of vehicle traffic, pedestrian traffic, or the movement of wildlife.

Vehicle Traffic

Vehicle overpasses can take several forms, but the most common is a high-level overpass. This type of overpass allows vehicles to move uninterrupted over a highway or main overpass lane. Vehicle overpasses may also take the form of a bridge used to modify an existing at-grade intersection. Engineers refer to this modification as a grade separation.

Vehicle overpasses may also be a ramp added to an existing interchange, replacing a current cloverleaf loop, which can slow traffic and be challenging to construct. Depending on the overpass design, traffic may move at several distinct levels and flow in all directions at near open road speeds.

Pedestrian Traffic

Pedestrian overpasses completely separate vehicle traffic from pedestrian activity. Railroads, highways, roadways, and natural barriers can hinder pedestrian movement and are not always suitable for traditional sidewalks and on-street road crossings. Pedestrian overpasses entirely separate pedestrians and motor vehicle traffic, providing a safe crossing option where no other pedestrian crossing is available. Pedestrian overpasses are also an ideal method of connecting off-road trails and paths where significant barriers exist.

Effective pedestrian overpasses must accommodate all persons, as required by the ADA, and must be designed to encourage pedestrian usage. Research has found that many pedestrians will avoid using an overpass if they can cross the street or barrier in approximately the same amount of time. Pedestrian overpasses function best when the grade allows for the overpass to be built without a ramp, such as an overpass over a low-lying road or highway.

Wildlife

The systematic development of wildlife overpasses offers a unique and innovative solution for enabling the free movement of wildlife while reducing the risk of animal-vehicle collisions. A wildlife overpass can be a new structure designed to fit the area’s topographical needs or retrofit an existing structure, such as an abandoned railway crossing. Wildlife overpasses are typically designed to facilitate most species’ movement in an area and usually include fencing or barriers to increase their effectiveness. These overpasses often target larger species, such as deer, elk, and moose, which pose the most significant safety risk to vehicles and their passengers.

Looking For An Overpass Fabricator? Contact Selco Manufacturing Today

At Selco manufacturing, we are experts in the design and fabrication of overpasses for any purpose. Since 1907, we have served the transportation industry with the expertise and manufacturing capabilities they need. We have earned a reputation for having the experience, knowledge, and manufacturing capabilities to provide exceptional products and service to our customers. To learn more about our overpass solutions, contact us or request a quote today.