|Bridge east of Wray to be replaced, detour planned|
|Written by Holyoke Enterprise|
The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) is moving forward on the bridge replacement project on US 34 east of Wray near mile marker (MM) 254. The former timber bridge over the North Fork of the Republican River is both functionally obsolete and structurally deficient, requiring replacement.
So far, crews have set girders for the new bridge and have poured the new bridge deck. There will be a two- to four-day closure on US 34 beginning Monday, Oct. 29 at 7 p.m., at which time the existing structure will be demolished and the new one slid into its place.
Local detours will be necessary for motorists, as the closure will be in place 24 hours a day. Motorists who must or prefer to use highway detours will be in place into St. Francis, Kan. and Haigler, Neb. via US 34, US 36, US 385 and Nebraska/Kansas State Highway 27. A detour map is available at www.coloradodot.info/projects/us34wraybridge.
Also during the US 34 closure, CDOT maintenance crews will be making repairs to another bridge structure approximately 4.5 miles east of the Wray bridge at MM 258.9. Crews will be replacing a timber bridge deck with a new steel deck to increase the structural integrity of the bridge and to help increase safety. The maintenance work is being done in conjunction with the closure to minimize the impact to motorists. It will require a one-lane detour and a traffic signal, and overweight and oversize loads will be restricted from driving through this work zone.
Motorists should plan for minor delays on both directions of the highway during normal work days, and are urged to allow for extra travel time. Work will typically take place Mondays through Thursdays from roughly 7 a.m.-7 p.m., but during the closure of US 34 beginning Oct. 30, work will take place 24 hours a day (including Saturday and Sunday) until the work is completed in order to minimize the impact to the traveling public. Motorists are reminded to obey all road signs and flaggers and to drive slow for the cone zone throughout the work zone.
Lawrence Construction is the contractor for the $2.5 million replacement project funded through the Colorado Bridge Enterprise (CBE), a government-owned entity within CDOT. The purpose of the CBE is to complete repair, reconstruct or replace bridges that are in poor condition. To learn more about the CBE, visit www.coloradodot.info/programs/BridgeEnterprise.
Holyoke Enterprise October 18, 2012