Abstract: For studying strengthening effect of reinforced concrete (RC) curved bridge by using externally prestressed reinforcement, the some destructive tests for the RC curved beams for both the strengthened and unstrengthened are carried out. The deformation characteristics, the failure pattern and the ultimate bearing capacity of the curved beam are mainly analyzed. Based on the experimental study, the nonlinear finite element model is established by the software ANSYS, and the main parameters which influence the RC curved beam with the externally prestressed reinforcement are analyzed. The failure mode of the reinforced curved beam is ductile failure, and the ultimate bearing capacity increases 14.6%. The results show that the reinforcement effect for the RC curved beam with the externally prestressed reinforcement is remarkable. The layout of the external prestressing tendon is closer the shape of the curved beam, the better effect can be gotten. The eccentricity of the prestressing tendon is greater, the higher strength of prestressed reinforcement obtains. And the ductility of the curved beam decreases with the increase of the effective prestress.