Workers labor last week to dismantle the temporary bridge that served motorists during construction of the new structure.
Photo by M. Scott Moon
More than half of the temporary bridge Soldotna motorists came to depend on is now no more than a memory as Wilder Construction bridge workers are making headway on removal of the structure.
Begun in the spring of 2005, the temporary bridge across the Kenai River was installed for use while the deteriorating old bridge was being removed and a new, five-lane bridge was built.
Notwithstanding numerous delays due to obstinate underwater rock beds, winter river ice and steel design flaws, the new bridge opened to vehicular traffic June 25.
"We're a little more than halfway through (with removal)," Matt Coullahan, project engineer for the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, said Monday. "We hope to have it done by Sept. 19."
Crews also are doing some additional curb work along the Eureka Mall and the CarQuest auto parts store, he said, to keep some landscaping rock in place.
Some touch-up seeding and shrub work is continuing and workers will restore the riverbank vegetation following completion of the temporary bridge removal, Coullahan said.
Phil Hermanek can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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