State officials have given the green light to two U.S. 52 bridge-replacement projects in the Pilot Mountain area, but called a temporary halt to another in that vicinity.
The two bridges to be replaced include one on N.C. 268/South Key Street and another on Cook School Road, which cross U.S. 52.
A Mount Airy company, Smith-Rowe LLC, was awarded a $3.1 million contract for both bridge-replacement projects. It was the low bidder for each, according to N.C. Department of Transportation officials who awarded them.
The work won’t start until mid-June, when school is no longer in session. This should alleviate any traffic issues associated with bus routes and give educational officials time to plan for alternate routes when students return this fall.
All work on the bridge-replacement projects should be completed by late June 2016.
The existing N.C. 268/South Key Street bridge was constructed in 1960 and is considered functionally obsolete and structurally deficient. That means that although the bridge is safe, it was built to design standards no longer in use and requires significant maintenance to stay functional.
Meanwhile, the existing Cook School Road bridge over U.S. 52 also is considered functionally obsolete, having been built in 1953.
Bridge Work Delayed
A third bridge-replacement project in Pilot Mountain, on Old Westfield Road, is being delayed by state transportation officials.
This is occurring to avoid any potential conflicts with an ongoing bridge-rehabilitation project on Dodson Mill Road near the town.
Crews are now working to rehabilitate a bridge over U.S. 52 on Dodson Mill Road. The detour route for that project uses Old U.S. 52.
Because Old U.S. 52 needs to be closed during the Old Westfield Road bridge replacement project, the DOT has decided to delay the replacement for one year.
The Dodson Mill Road rehabilitation work includes replacing the bridge’s superstructure, repairing the bridge’s substructure and grading and paving around the bridge.
During repairs, U.S. 52 must be closed at night several times to remove and replace bridge girders. The detour for that part of the project will take motorists to Old U.S. 52 before routing traffic to U.S. 52.
The delayed bridge project will involve replacing a 65-year-old structure that, although safe, is considered functionally obsolete and structurally deficient. That means the bridge was built to design standards no longer in use.