The University of Iowa

Volga Pedestrian Bridge and Trail Engineering & Design

Existing Bridge in Volga
Academic Year 
2019-2020
College/Department 
Civil and Environmental Engineering
Project Partner 
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As part of the Senior Design Capstone Course, Civil & Environmental Engineering students provided designs and costs estimates for a pedestrian bridge spanning the Volga River, to replace a bridge that had been partially destroyed by flooding, as well as the trail connecting to the site.

The City of Volga, Iowa requested the design of a new pedestrian bridge to connect the east and west ends of town which are separated by the Volga River. The existing bridge that would allow pedestrians to cross the Volga River was partially washed away by a flood and is unserviceable. According to the City, many pedestrians use the existing trail system, however, it is a challenge to travel from the campground to the Reflection Park area because the only available crossing is the county bridge on highway C2W. This vehicular bridge is an unsafe pedestrian crossing, which is a primary driver for the design of a new pedestrian bridge. Another issue the City noted about the remains of the existing bridge is the buildup of debris on the piers when the river is at a high stage.

The engineering team was tasked with connecting the two sides of Volga with a pedestrian bridge along with connecting trails and demolition of the remains of the old bridge. The connection will provide excellent pedestrian mobility within the city, promote safer pedestrian walkways, and furnish better access to city services such as the Volga U Campground and the new Reflection Park. The final report also includes a cost estimate for the removal of the existing bridge that can be performed along with the construction of the new bridge, or divided into a separate phase.