For many it would appear as though Christmas came early as the re-opening for Lost Creek Bridge has finally come.
It’s been a long few weeks for the residents of Elsberry and Hwy. 79 commuters. With Lost Creek being closed, many were forced to travel alternate routes, which added several minutes to their daily drives. However, that is no longer the issue as R.V. Wagner was able to complete the job five day’s sooner than the projected 25.
“First I want to thank R.V. Wagner, Inc. of St. Louis and their crew for completing the bridge replacement five days ahead of schedule. The roadway closure was scheduled for 25 days and they were able to complete the bridge replacement in 20 days,” said Erik Maninga, MoDOT Area Engineer for Lincoln, Montgomery and Warren Counties. “The new 32 foot wide bridge will serve the community for years to come.”
Maninga went on to say he also wanted to thank the residents in Lincoln County and especially the folks that live in Elsberry for their patience during the road closure. As a result for an early completion, R.V. Wagner will be receiving a $50,000 incentive. According to Nick Hayden, project manager for R.V. Wagner, their success was a result of a strong support system from MoDOT.
“We put together a great team,” said Hayden. “The guys I had working with us, we had MoDOT, who were big players in this and without them we couldn’t have gotten this done.”
According to Hayden, MoDOT worked with them over the entire project and with the possibility of school starting before they could complete the bridge, they were able to kick it into overdrive to prevent longer bus rides for the students and parents.
“School was a big deal for us and we wanted to make sure we got done before then,” said Hayden.
The new bridge is 32-foot wide with 12-foot lanes and four-foot shoulders. The other big difference is the fact the one span bridge has no trusses, which may be an odd site for residents who have been around the bridge for a long time. The Pipe piling is approximately 75-feet deep on each side with precast box beams and a reinforced deck on the top.
“The first week was a rough one for us, but once we got the sub structure done and the precast it was all down hill from there,” said Hayden. “We were almost here 24 hours a day that first week. In fact we had some guys working as many as 12, 14 and 18 hour shifts.”
Elsberry City Mayor Terry Martin said this was another great job by MoDOT and R.V. Wagner.
“The contractor worked around the clock, building the bridge and they were able to complete it early,” said Martin. “I would like to thank everyone for being patient during the construction. I know it took everyone longer to get in and out of Elsberry during the project, but the bridge is really nice and I’m glad to see it finished before school started.”
Lost Creek Bridge opened all lanes at 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 17.
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