Last updated: November 12. 2013 3:40PM - 824 Views
Lauren Williams Staff Writer

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Beginning Monday, Nov. 18, a section of Boykin Bridge Road, located about five miles west of JCT NC 411 near the Sampson-Bladen line, will be closed for four months so the bridge over South River can be replaced.

“Maintenance was no longer feasible,” explained Amanda Glynn, Division Bridge Program manager for the N.C. Department of Transportation, of the troublesome bridge, noting that maintenance crews “had to go out to the bridge on a regular basis.”

“It’s the same scenario we’ve been running into with a lot of bridges,” agreed Adam Britt, NCDOT Bridge Project Engineer. “It just doesn’t make sense to keep on with the maintenance.”

According to Glynn, the bridge’s deck, in particular, was the source of many problems.

“It has a steel plank floor which means that the deck is made of steel sheets that are covered in asphalt and that design has had a lot of issues. It’s really difficult to maintain,” she explained. “We’ve not had a good history with that.”

Also contributing to the bridge’s poor condition, Glynn added, is the numerous heavy trucks that travel through the area and cross the bridge.

Surprisingly, the bridge is only 22 years old, having been built in 1991. “That’s not a good life span at all,” she attested.

The contract for the project has been let to Palmetto Infrastructure out of Greenville, S.C. for $735,300. 25 and the replacement work is expected to take around 120 days, closing the road in both directions through the winter months.

“Hopefully we will get it done before there are crops coming in in the spring,” said Glynn of the state-funded project.

Until the replacement is complete, motorists will have to take a detour, one that will take them out of Sampson and through Bladen and Cumberland counties, she added, advising drivers to travel Hwy. 210 over to Hwy. 242 and then get on Hwy. 411.

The bridge on Boykin Bridge Road is located just upstream from a bridge on SR1208/Greens Bridge Road which is also being replaced due to a low posting or weight limit.

According to the NCDOT’s bridge fact sheet, the department is “investing more money than ever to improve the state’s bridges. About $450 million in state funds have been invested over the past two years to replace, preserve or repair bridges, enabling the department to improve more than 1,000 bridges across the state with a focus on replacing and improving structurally deficient bridges.”

Lauren Williams can be reached at 910-592-8137, ext. 117 or via email at lwilliams@civitasmedia.com.

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