New Benicia-Martinez Bridge

New Benicia-Martinez Bridge

Benicia, California
United States
New Benicia-Martinez Bridge

TYLin provided design and construction phase services for the New Benicia-Martinez Bridge in Benicia, California.

A signature bridge for the communities of Benicia and Martinez, the 7,400-foot-long bridge is part of the California Lifeline Route System, a system in which all bridges are to be open to traffic shortly after a seismic event.  

TYLin performed a preliminary design study and prepared cost estimates for the concrete box girder alternative. The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) then retained the firm, as part of a joint venture, to complete the final design and prepare plans and construction estimates for the segmental concrete girder alternative. 

The New Benicia-Martinez Bridge has 22 spans, 12 over water. The five-lane toll bridge is over 83 feet wide and aligned east of and parallel to the existing six-lane Benicia-Martinez Bridge and Union Pacific Railroad Bridge. 

The post-tensioned, concrete box girder was primarily constructed using the balanced segmental cast-in-place construction method, a challenge at the time for such long spans (up to 659 feet in length). The segments are 15.8 feet long, with a maximum of 19 segments cantilevered from each side of the fixed moment-connection pier. 

Significant features of the New Benicia-Martinez Bridge include two moment-resisting midspan hinges between the three-span continuous frames, a unique application at the time for a high-seismic zone. These elements provide continuity for post-construction loads (live loading and force redistribution). They also lock the cantilevers laterally and vertically together to minimize temperature displacement and movements from a seismic event.  


  • TYLin’s design represented the first Caltrans segmental bridge to in 20 years. 
  • The bridge was designed and constructed to lifeline seismic standards. 
  • To reduce foundation costs, the deep-water foundations use large-diameter steel shell caissons. 
  • Sand-lightweight concrete was used for the superstructure to reduce seismic forces.  
  • The bridge carries facilities for Bay Area Rapid Transit. 


Excellence in Structural Engineering, 2008
National Council of Structural Engineers Associations (NCSEA)
National Recognition Award, 2008
American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC)
Project of the Year Award, 2008
California Transportation Foundation (CTF)
Honor Award, 2008
Consulting Engineers and Land Surveyors of California (CELSOC)
Globe Award, 2008
American Road and Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA)
Transportation/Bridges, 2007
California Construction
#1, Top 10 Bridges List, 2006
Roads and Bridges