Box Culverts


With superior strength and durability, precast box culverts provide a versatile and economical alternative to the cast-in-place concrete bridge. Amazingly adaptable, box culverts are available in multiple sizes and can be installed in single, double-cell or multi-line configurations.


Project Profile

Project: Kossuth County, Iowa bridge
Solution: Replace aging steel I-beam bridge with timber abutments with modern box culvert bridge system
Material: Precast concrete box culvert
Box culvert size: 22 box culvert pieces; 20’ wide x 14’ tall; pieces weighed up to 45,000 lbs
Length of box culvert bridge system: 114’ long
Perspective: Take a close look to see how the size of the men compares to the total size of the box culvert.

Project Profile

Project: Webster County, Iowa bridge
Solution: Replace aging wooden bridge with timber abutments with modern box culvert bridge system
Material: Precast concrete box culvert
Box culvert size: 16’ wide x 16’ tall and with a 15 degree skew; pieces weighed up to 48,000 lbs
Length of box culvert bridge system: 108’ long
Highlights: The road and bridge were removed on a Monday and traffic was opened by Friday.


Project Profile

Project: Foundation Park, Sioux Falls, SD
Material: Precast concrete box culvert
Box culvert size: A combination of 14’x5’ and 14’x4’ box culverts

Common uses of box culverts

  • Underpasses
  • Service Tunnels
  • Subways
  • Outfalls
  • Bridges
  • Stream Culverts
  • Material Handling
  • Utility Storage
  • Chimneys
  • Vertical Storage
  • Watertight Holding Tanks and more


Save time and labor costs

With the installation of precast concrete box culverts, most projects can be completed in a fraction of the time because the structures arrive on the jobsite ready to install. There’s no need to build forms, wait for good weather, pour concrete, and wait for it to cure. Precast box culverts save considerable time and labor expense over the cast-in-place option.

When it comes to box culvert, we can make anything.

We can even cast in A-LOK gaskets to create watertight pipe-to-box culvert connections. We can also cast dowel bar couplers into the box culvert walls, which allow the contractor to thread rebar into the DBR and easily connect poured-in-place walls to the box culvert.

Large Box Culvert

Cemcast Pipe and Precast can make virtually any size of box culvert as long as it can be hauled on a trailer by a truck. These structures provide the ideal solution when there is limited clearance. We strongly suggest using box culverts instead of arch pipe for any application requiring greater flow than a 60” arch pipe can deliver. We can make any span with as little as 2.5’ of rise.

Box Culvert Large Kossuth County 20'x14' ready to install

Small Box Culvert

Small box culvert runs are ideal in many situations, and we can manufacture boxes as small as 2.5’ x 2.5’. One of our installations took place at a local country club, which wanted a structure equivalent to a 48” round pipe that would be completely hidden. We created specialty end sections that precisely match the existing slope to preserve the aesthetics of the landscape and hide the drainage structure from view.

Small Box Culvert at Minnehaha Country Club

Specialty Box Culvert

Construction projects often include special circumstances that call for custom products. This is where Cemcast Pipe and Precast really shines. Our first box culvert job was actually the most involved box culvert we have ever made. The basic structure was a 6’ x 6’ box with four lines of boxes to span a creek. The engineer designed the boxes to have walls poured on the ends of them. Because of this, we needed to L bend #6 rebar and extend it from the side of the box culvert and from the top of the lid.

The middle of the box was a double bell allowing us to pour all end sections with the same joint. To complicate things further, the engineer specified the end sections to be 4’ of box culvert with haunches cast monolithically with a 2’ flat area that extended like toes beyond the box culvert edges. The project involved plenty of planning, but it went extremely well. Once installed, the contractor poured walls around the precast box culvert and then installed large gates over the openings of the box culvert system to prevent Crow Creek from flooding the City of Aberdeen.


We use our box culvert forming system to make vaults with haunches or square corners in single-cell or twin-cell configurations. Available vaults are: air release, vacuum, valve, meter, electrical, wet wells, and valve pits.

Box Culverts in Action

From Penro Construction Company:

“Reinforced concrete box culverts (RCBC) have grown in popularity in the past few years with advancements in manufacturing that make them more cost effective than pouring a box culvert in place. We built a 150′ long, 10′ wide x 5′ tall RCBC in the Bridgeport Industrial Park in Sioux City.

Cemcast out of Hartford, SD precast the sections and they looked great. They were able to deliver all 27 pieces in one day which saved us time and effort during installation and the installation went as good as we could have hoped for.

We thought it would take all week, but our crew had it installed by the end of the day Wednesday. Best of all it looks great. It’s a shame we have to bury it.”