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Bridge work falls behind schedule
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The completion date for the Beersheba Street Bridge is about to change. Not for the better, says a Tennessee Department of Transportation representative.
“This project is substantially behind as a result of the problems with the utilities,” said TDOT spokesperson Jennifer Flynn. “I haven’t changed the completion date on my report because the construction change order has not been finalized. As soon as that happens and I get a new date, I’ll change it.”
Flynn says completion could be in the spring of next year. Estimated project completion date was September 2011, which was only two months away. The plan is still to keep the existing bridge open until the new one is finished.
Currently under construction is only one-half of what will be the new bridge.
“What the contractor has done is build one half of the project, which is what you are seeing now,” said Flynn. “When that portion of the project is complete, traffic will use it as a two-lane bridge. The sidewalks won’t be constructed until later so the width will be adequate for two lanes.”
Once that section is complete and traffic diverted, the old bridge will be demolished to make room for construction of the next half of the new bridge. Bridge removal is expected this summer, says Flynn.
When it comes to the other bridge currently being replaced in the city, that project is on schedule and should complete on time, says Flynn.
Crouch Memorial Bridge, located over Big Hickory Creek on Morrison Street, is being replaced by a concrete bulb-tee beam bridge. The existing bridge will remain open until construction of a new adjacent structure. Estimated project completion is July 2012.
Flynn says the current stage of the relocation of roadway from Centertown to Spring Valley Road, which includes construction of two concrete bulb-tee beam bridges, is on track and the next stage will begin this summer.
The current grading stage will be followed by another grading stage.
“This grading project is nearly complete,” she said. “The next stage of construction on U.S. 70S is another grading project that is nearly seven miles in length from near SR-281 to Centertown.”
The contract for the next stage will be awarded sometime this summer or in early fall. Once grading stages are complete, paving will begin.
“Following that is the 12.5 mile paving project that will pave the entire length of both of the grading projects in Cannon and Warren counties from near SR-281 to Spring Valley Road. It was included in the last three-year transportation improvement program to be funded in fiscal year 2013.”
Crouch Memorial Bridge and the relocation of U.S. 70S are both Recovery Act Projects, while the bridge on Beersheba Street is not.