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The bridge over Bryant Creek on Douglas County Route B between Ava and Mansfield is scheduled to be closed Monday, March 7, and a new bridge built, the Missouri Department of Transportation said.
The new Route B bridge will be built and open to traffic by April 12.
During the construction period, Route B will be closed to all traffic in the vicinity of the bridge project.
Route 14/Cowskin Creek
In the meantime, MoDOT officials have heard the concern of Ava R-l Superintendent Brian Wilson and postponed the closing of the Cowskin Creek Bridge on Highway 14 west of Ava until after school is out.
The start of that bridge replacement project west of Ava has been postponed until late May. MoDOT and contractors were able to push back construction until after classes in the Ava schools are out for the summer (instead of beginning the project in early April).
The Route 14/Cowskin Creek bridge is now scheduled to be closed no earlier than Thursday, May 26. May 25 is scheduled to be the last day of classes at Ava.
Whenever the bridge is closed the contractor has up to 44 days to build a new bridge and open it to traffic.
Ava school officials requested the change in the start date for the Cowskin Creek bridge work because the district runs several buses across the bridge each day. Making the switch keeps the school from having to run considerably longer routes, and it does not harm the tight timeline for the many bridge projects that must be completed this year.
Instead, a project to replace the Route 76/Red Bank Creek bridge on Route 76 east of Ava has been moved up and will begin in mid-April.
The bridge projects in Douglas County are part of MoDOT’s Safe & Sound Bridge Improvement program that will replace or repair 802 bridges across Missouri by the end of 2013.
Preparing for Route B Closing
A detour for the Route B project will be signed along Route 5 north and south of the closed bridge. State highway traffic normally is not detoured onto county-maintained roads.
However, local drivers familiar with the area will be able to use nearby county roads for a shorter route around the closed bridge.
MoDOT and contractors have alerted law enforcement, fire and ambulance agencies so they can plan how to respond to emergency calls with the bridge closed. The school district and post office also have been notified so they can adjust bus routes and mail carrier routes if necessary.
The Route B bridge over Bryant Creek, about three miles north of Mount Zion near the Douglas-Wright county line, was built in 1957.
The old bridge will be replaced by a new pre-cast concrete slab structure. The new bridge will be 105 feet long by 26 feet wide. The driving lanes on the new bridge will be about 12 feet wide.
The prime contractor on the Route B bridge is KTU Constructors, a group of bridge design and construction companies. The group is replacing 554 bridges of the 802-bridge total in the Safe & Sound program for $487 million.
Kiewit Western Co., a KTU Constructors partner, will build the Route B bridge over Bryant Creek.
As part of the Safe & Sound program, the road is closed where each bridge is being replaced or repaired. Closing the road enables workers to do the bridge project quicker, safer and cheaper.
Information on the Safe & Sound Bridge Improvement Program statewide can be found on MoDOT’s web site — www.modot.org.
For information on 26 bridges being replaced in 10 counties in the Springfield region in 2011, check www.modot.org/springfield.
Six New Bridges Slated in 2011 in Douglas County
Here are the bridge replacement projects scheduled for 2011 in Douglas County, although dates may change:
* Route B, Bryant Creek, north of Ava — Closed March 7 and reopened by April 12.
* Route 76, Red Bank Creek, east of Ava — Closed April 14 and reopened by May 20.
* Route 14, Fox Creek, east of Ava — Closed May 24 and reopened by July 20.
* Route 14, Cowskin Creek, west of Ava — Closed May 26 and reopened by July 9.
* Route 76, Beaver Creek, west of Ava — Closed July 11 and reopened by Aug. 24.
* Route 76, Bryant Creek, east of Ava — Closed Oct. 10 and reopened by Dec. 6.