National Bridge Inventory: District of Columbia

  • Of the 244 bridges in the district, 10, or 4.1 percent, are classified as structurally deficient. This means one of the key elements is in poor or worse condition.
  • This is from 10 bridges classified as structurally deficient in 2015.
  • The deck area of structurally deficient bridges accounts for 9.7 percent of total deck area on all structures.
  • 3 of the structurally deficient bridges are on the Interstate Highway System.
  • 4 bridges are posted for load, which may restrict the size and weight of vehicles crossing the structure.
  • The state has identified needed repairs on 123 bridges at an estimated cost of $733.2 million.
  • This compares to 129 bridges that needed work in 2015.

County Year Built Daily Crossings Type of Bridge Location
District of Columbia 1964 103,600 Urban Interstate T. Roosevelt Brid over Pot River & ; Potomac
District of Columbia 1964 81,700 Urban Interstate Anacostia Freeway over Suitland Pkwy S.E.
District of Columbia 1932 60,300 Urban local road Memorial Avenue over Gwmp (NB) & Potomac Rive
District of Columbia 1963 58,000 Urban freeway/expressway Anacostia Freeway over Nicholson Street
District of Columbia 1907 14,300 Urban other principal arterial H Street over Washington Terminal Yard
District of Columbia 1955 5,000 Urban other principal arterial Ramp from Benning Rd over SB Kenilworth Ave
District of Columbia 1963 2,250 Urban Interstate Ramp 6 over Nicholson Street
District of Columbia 1950 2,000 Urban local road Joyce Road over Luzon Branch
District of Columbia 1900 1,000 Urban local road 31st Street N.W. over C & ;O Canal
District of Columbia 1958 50 Urban local road Edgewater Stable A over Rock Creek
Type of Bridge Number of Bridges Area of All Bridges
(sq. meters)
Daily Crossings on All Bridges Number of Structurally Deficient Bridges Area of Structurally Deficient Bridges
(sq. meters)
Daily Crossings on Structurally Deficient Bridges
Rural Interstate 0 0 0 0 0 0
Rural arterial 0 0 0 0 0 0
Rural minor arterial 0 0 0 0 0 0
Rural major collector 0 0 0 0 0 0
Rural minor collector 1 270 2,000 0 0 0
Rural local road 0 0 0 0 0 0
Urban Interstate 67 197,799 3,561,270 3 17,863 187,550
Urban freeway/expressway 21 70,949 862,300 1 591 58,000
Urban other principal arterial 50 155,964 1,867,100 2 16,788 19,300
Urban minor arterial 38 64,937 669,900 0 0 0
Urban collector 20 26,962 202,300 0 0 0
Urban local road 47 49,675 487,741 4 19,877 63,350
Total 244 566,556 7,652,611 10 55,119 328,200
Type of Work Number of Bridges Cost to Repair
(in millions)
Daily Crossings Area of Bridges
(sq. meters)
Bridge replacement 1 $69 14,300 16,526
Widening & rehabilitation 0 $0 0 0
Rehabilitation 19 $141 695,900 48,438
Deck rehabilitation/replacement 10 $36 224,000 10,916
Other structural work 93 $488 2,734,852 150,255
Total 123 $733 3,669,052 226,134

About the data:

Data is from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) National Bridge Inventory (NBI), released April 2, 2020. Note that specific conditions on bridges may have changed as a result of recent work or updated inspections. Cost estimates were updated by ARTBA on April 14, 2020.

Effective January 1, 2018, FHWA changed the definition of structurally deficient as part of the final rule on highway and bridge performance measures, published May 20, 2017 pursuant to the 2012 federal aid highway bill Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21). Two measures that were previously used to classify bridges as structurally deficient are no longer used. This includes bridges where the overall structural evaluation was rated in poor or worse condition, or where the adequacy of waterway openings was insufficient.

The new definition limits the classification to bridges where one of the key structural elements—the deck, superstructure, substructure or culverts, are rated in poor or worse condition. During inspection, the conditions of a variety of bridge elements are rated on a scale of 0 (failed condition) to 9 (excellent condition). A rating of 4 is considered “poor” condition.

Cost estimates have been derived by ARTBA, based on 2018 average bridge replacement costs for structures on and off the National Highway System, published by FHWA. Bridge rehabilitation costs are estimated to be 68 percent of replacement costs. A bridge is considered to need repair if the structure has identified repairs as part of the NBI, a repair cost estimate is supplied by the bridge owner or the bridge is classified as structurally deficient. Please note that for a few states, the number of bridges needing to be repaired can vary significantly from year to year, and reflects the data entered by the state.

Bridges are classified by FHWA into types based on the functional classification of the roadway on the bridge. Interstates comprise routes officially designated by the Secretary of Transportation. Other principal arterials serve major centers of urban areas or provide mobility through rural areas. Freeways and expressways have directional lanes generally separated by a physical barrier, and access/egress points generally limited to on- and off-ramps. Minor arterials serve smaller areas and are used for trips of moderate length. Collectors funnel traffic from local roads to the arterial network; major collectors have higher speed limits and traffic volumes and are longer in length and spaced at greater intervals, while minor collectors are shorter and provide service to smaller communities. Local roads do not carry through traffic and are intended for short distance travel.

Compared to 46 in 2018

in the nation in % of structurally deficient bridges

1. Rhode Island 22.3%
42. Virginia 4.4%
43. District of Columbia 4.1%
44. Alabama 4.0%

Compared to 52 in 2018

in the nation in # of structurally deficient bridges

1. Iowa 4,575
51. Nevada 26
52. District of Columbia 10

Compared to 38 in 2018

in the nation in % of structurally deficient bridge deck area

1. Rhode Island 23.0%
7. Iowa 10.0%
8. District of Columbia 10.0%
9. Puerto Rico 10.0%
Full State Ranking

  • Source: Data is from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) National Bridge Inventory (NBI), released April 2, 2020. Note that specific conditions on bridges may have changed as a result of recent work or updated inspections. ARTBA is a non-partisan federation whose primary goal is to aggressively grow and protect transportation infrastructure investment to meet the public and business demand for safe and efficient travel.
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