Engineers recommend new bridge, not rehab
By Lucia Suarez
FAIR HAVEN — The engineer charged with the Depot Street bridge project says it will be most cost effective to replace it completely instead of rehabilitating it with a new deck.
Steve Diglio, civil engineer with KAS Inc, told Fair Haven town officials Tuesday night that a structural inspection of the bridge found that the abutments were severely damaged and steel beams would need extensive lead abatement work. He said the inspection was to make sure it was worth spending the money on the new deck.
“We didn’t want you to put a new nice deck on a bridge that has no abutments,” said Diglio, referring to calling for a project update with the Select Board. “Evaluations show that this bridge is not work $200,000 for a new deck.”
The replacement of the bridge is estimated to cost between $530,000 to $630,000, he said. Meanwhile the rehabilitation of the bridge could be much higher with the extra work needed.
Diglio also recommended the bridge posted at maximum 15,000 tons as soon as possible.
The bridge crosses the Castleton River on the southeastern part of town. As it stands now, the town planned to fill in the holes on the bridge with a brand new deck. It would mark the first time any major maintenance that has been done to the bridge since its construction in 1936.
The project funding would include a $175,000 grant from the state Agency of Transportation’s Town Highway Structures Program. The grant would pay for about 90 percent of the project, but Diglio said if the town moved forward with a new road, the money cannot be used for that construction.
For the complete story, see Friday's Rutland Herald.