Preparation work could take several weeks before the erosion control work could actually begin.
"We have an area at the pier nearest the shoreline on the south side of the Cumberland River where there is some scouring that, if left unattended, could eventually endanger the integrity of the bridge," said KYTC District 1 Acting Chief Engineer Mike McGregor. "We plan to reinforce the shoreline to repair the erosion and prevent future scouring."
Jim Smith Contracting was awarded an $820,138 contract to build a coffer dam around the fourth pier from the Smithland side of the river. The coffer dam will then be filled with concrete to provide additional protection for the pier during floods. The design includes a reinforced embankment constructed with sheet piling. The area will then be back-filled with rip rap to prevent future erosion.
"It is likely to take a couple of weeks to extend and beef up the road enough to allow a crane and other heavy equipment required for the work to access the site," McGregor said. "While we have an easement that allows us to access the area below the bridge for such work, there has not be a road into the site for many years. It will take almost as much time to extend the road as it will to do the required work."
Once the road upgrade is completed and the erosion control work is able to start, the project is expected to take about a month to complete. No traffic restrictions are planned on the bridge during the work.
Information provided by Keith Todd (Kentucky Transportation Cabinet)
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