It’s only a few months under way, but progress already is visible at the Anthony Wayne Bridge’s $28.7 million makeover.
At the top of the bridge’s main suspension span, a section of the new concrete deck upon which motorists will drive starting in 15 months or so is already in place. On either side of that stretch, the 83-year-old bridge’s steel beams and stringers are exposed to the sky while ironworkers replace some and repair others before rebuilding the deck there, too.
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Concrete pours for those sections could start as soon as Friday, weather permitting, Ohio Department of Transportation officials said while leading media tours of the structure today.
“It looks like it’s progressing well,” said Todd Audet, ODOT’s district deputy director in Bowling Green, also making his first comprehensive tour of the construction site since major work started in mid-March.
Once the suspension span is overhauled, contractor E.S. Wagner will tear down completely the first approach spans on either end -- spans built atop truss structures that no longer meet design codes. That phase is scheduled to begin in late fall, with the replacement spans built next spring.
Along with those approach spans’ complete replacement, elements of the steel work now under way are main reasons why the bridge has been closed to all traffic rather than being rebuilt one half at a time, explained David Geckle, ODOT’s project engineer.
Elsewhere on the bridge, crews have demolished rotting sections of the bridge’s southerly sidewalk after carefully removing and stockpiling the handrails, which will be refurbished off-site and returned for reinstallation later in the project.
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