Commissioner Mike Pearson: Three bridges under construction
Drizzle storm damage continues to plague District 2 with lots of holes, slowing our graders down and delaying progress in getting roads smoothed up. Yesterday, further delay was caused by some driver tearing off a bridge rail on a bridge on Midwest south of Forrest Hill. Stabilizing Post from Charter Oak to Forrest Hill has begun and the rebuild of Charter Oak east of Douglas is imminent.
We have completed gravelling almost 6 miles since the 1st of February and continue to haul material as fast as our hard working crew can get it. Henney north of 105 and Douglas north of Prairie Grove may be next. Many more are on the list than can be addressed soon.
Though our striping of the 4 miles of road mentioned in our last update was completed, the asphalt for Midwest south from CR 76 was not but is promised during our next warmup.
We have 3 bridges we are working on. One is CR 90 on Co Rd 76 between Peebly and Luther. The bridge and pilings are wood and is now closed. We are currently clearing the ROW so we can bring District 3’s newly acquired crane to drive steel pilings and our welders to do the welding. We anticipate this bridge to cost no more than $60,000.
A closed bridge CR 233 we will be replaced with state money and required to follow federal requirements. Though we initially had an estimate of $40,000 from a contractor in 2010, we simply did not have the funds to do so at that time. With the federal requirements and out sourcing, the same bridge is now estimated at $250,000 and not to be built till sometime in 2016 if funding is still available. With the current drought, we will soon be placing a large reusable tin culvert temporary bridge at maybe $8,000 so that the road can be opened. These two bridges only affect a few families but nonetheless are just as important as our heavily trafficked roads.
Cooper Hill bridge is on Prairie Grove and Hiwassee across a small creek which will be called the Bill Owen Memorial Bridge. Cooper Hill is a cliff that people driving Prairie Grove had to curve around and up to get to Cooper Hill Cemetary. One of the Coopers buried there carved his initials under the bridge with the date 1913. At that time bridges were built and roads maintained by the townships, not the county or state, by local citizens using ox and horse pulled wagons. There are no records of when this short 20′ 1″ bridge was built. Bill Owen, from the first time I met him, had continually requested that we knock that hill down and reduce the grade. At 93 yrs of age (5 yrs ago) he was jubilant as we got the ODOT engineers out there with our Plan-in-Hand to get this done. Unfortunately he passed away a few months later. At a cost of $492,000, this project is well underway. His widow, now 97, is equally excited and is hoping to live long enough to see it completed.
In our next update, the huge issue of EMS Districts and getting ambulance service to you will be addressed.
Please help us to help you by not hesitating to communicate your observations. Our website, firstname.lastname@example.org is there to serve you. My personal cell number is 405-650-0384. I do my best to answer or return all calls.
Mike Pearson Commissioner
District 2 Logan County