The collapse of the Hanson Plaze Footbridge happened on July 17, 2006. The extreme heatwave caused the bridge's concrete to expand, buckle, and eventually fall.
A professional structural engineering firm conducted a thorough examination of Hanson Plaza, including the tunnel and adjacent parking areas, and made recommendations to the University based on the results of that examination. In addition, senior facilities managers have begun to survey the campus' other garages and similar structures to determine if any show signs of heat-induced deterioration. No additional weaknesses have been detected.
Physical Plant Department staff have begun working with outside contractors on the repair of the Hanson Plaza footbridge. Their efforts will extend beyond normal business hours so that the work can be completed as soon as possible and the area reopened to vehicle traffic.
Fortunately, the bridge's superstructure is sound overall, but will be given extra bracing to make doubly sure it is safe. Also, the stairs on the HMB side of the bridge will be removed to make way for a new access to the plaza that will fit with the design of the Sorenson Language and Communication Center. Until the design is completed, the footbridge will remain closed to pedestrians.
Posted: 8 Aug 2006