December 13, 2012
100 Year Old Bridge Relocated for Trail Project
The bridge approaches were dug out on the 100-year old structure to allow a truck and trailer to be backed underneath the crossing by the Scotland County Road and Bridge Department. The work crew cut the pilings and was able to transport the bridge to Lake Show Me where it will be resurfaced for use on the city's recreational trail.
A cooperative effort between the Scotland County Road and Bridge Department and the City of Memphis recently helped grant funding for a trails project at Lake Show-Me.
Last week, crews from both entities put the plans to work, transferring an abandoned county bridge to the lake to be refurbished and installed as part of the recreational trail for pedestrian traffic.
"Up to this point it had all been paperwork," said county road boss Mark Drummond. "Now came the tricky part, moving the thing."
Drummond's crew decided to dig out the approaches to the bridge, to allow a flatbed semitrailer to be backed underneath the structure.
"We are going to turn the roadway into a low-water crossing at the spot of the former bridge," Drummond said, "so we went ahead and did the dirt work to allow us access with the truck."
With the trailer in place, crews supported the bridge with a track hoe and chains. The approaches were detached and then the ground pilings were cut with a torch to totally detach the bridge deck.
"That process reduced it from a 72-foot long structure to just 48 feet of actual bridge," Drummond said. "It still made for a big load to haul, but we made it to the lake without any problems."
The bridge, a 72-foot span across a creek bed on an unnamed county road in southern Scotland County off Route W, has been closed since 2005. The bridge was originally constructed in 1910.
While it was deemed unsafe for vehicle traffic by the Missouri Department of Transportation, engineers agreed it would be more than adequate for pedestrian traffic once new planking is installed.
City Street Superintendent Roy Monroe indicated the bridge was installed on Tuesday, December 11th. It was lowered into place, setting on concrete headwalls.
A new wooden floor will be installed on the bridge in the weeks to come and finish work will be completed on the piers.
The bridge can be accessed from the campground at the south end of the dam. The pedestrian trail runs from the primitive camping area. The bridge spans the main lake drainage channel between Lake Show Me and the old city lake.