NCDOT to start bridge replacementPublished 12:16am Thursday, February 14, 2013
A detour is ahead for N.C. Highway 33 travelers starting on Monday as the North Carolina Department of Transportation begins work on replacing a circa 1935 bridge spanning the Norfolk Southern Railway in Chocowinity. The bridge will be closed until Oct. 31.
The bridge is considered “structurally insufficient and functionally obsolete,” according to a NCDOT press release, which put it in the replacement category for the agency.
“It’s just an old bridge,” said Joey Brickhouse, NCDOT assistant resident engineer. “Structurally, the integrity of the old bridge is fine, but it’s old enough that we can deem it a replaceable bridge.”
For the next eight months, the following detours will be in effect:
-Motorists traveling east on N.C. Highway 33 toward Chocowinity will be rerouted from N.C. Highway 33 to Taylor Road to Fredrick Road to U.S. Highway 17 South to U.S. Highway 17 North to U.S. Highway 17 Business then back to N.C. Highway 33.
-Motorists traveling east on N.C. Highway 33 toward Aurora will take Taylor Road to Fredrick Road to U.S. Highway 17 South to U.S. Highway 17 North to Exit 176 then back to N.C. Highway 33.
-For motorists traveling west, the detour is much less involved: N.C. Highway 33 to U.S. Highway 17 Business to Fredrick Road to Taylor Road then back to N.C. Highway 33.
All detours will be marked with signage, according to the NCDOT press release.
Brickhouse said the existing bridge will be replaced with a three-span structure constructed of metal girders, with a concrete overlay that makes up the bridge deck. “(The new bridge) will be elevated five feet higher than what it is now and that’s just to help accommodate the railroad department,” he explained.
The $4.2 million contract was awarded last March to Barnhill Contracting Company of Tarboro and is expected to be completed by April 12, 2014.