Engineer outlines county bridge repair plan

COLUMBIA CITY — Whitley County Engineer Brandon Forrester presented plans last week to the county commissioners for county bridges in need of repair or replacement.“Every two years I come to you and present a plan,” said Forrester who handed out the county’s bridge plan for 2011-2015.“(Bridge) 36 is at the top of our list,” he said.Bridge 36, located on County Road 550 South near Collamer, had an initial estimated cost of $200,000, according to Forrester.Forrester told the commission that when Bridge 36 was completed, there would only be one bridge left with a posted weight limit. Crews are currently working on replacing the bridge.“There were 15 or 16 when I took over,” said Forrester.According to Forrester, bridges without posted weight limits can be crossed by any vehicle carrying “any legal load.“When we’re getting into oversized loads, then all bets are off.”Forrester said Bridge 16, located on County Road 100 South is the next project on the list.He said a detour would be required.“We’ll have to do something about signage there,” he said.Ten other bridges are scheduled to have some repair work done on them this year.Also on the list for reconstruction in the county over the next five years are:• Bridge 10, located on County Road 600 North (Toewall failing, serious erosion).• Bridge 69, located on County Road 650 East (Abutments cracked and spalled).• Bridge 65, located on Ruckman Road (Footings exposed above flow line).• Bridge 40, located on County Road 800 South (Issue with ditch geometry).• Bridge 25, located on County Road 575 West (Twin pipes, deflected since construction).Forrester also included a listed of bridges which will receive repairs in 2011.