LOCKHART — It will eventually be replaced but in the meantime the SC 9 bridge that crosses the Broad River in the Town of Lockhart will be temporarily closed for repairs.
The SCDOT announced Monday that it plans to close the bridge on Monday, July 18. The announcement states that “a recent inspection found damage that requires short-term repairs. The structure has reached a point where repairs are necessary at this time. This work is required to extend the life of the current structure and allow the bridge to remain in service until a new bridge can be constructed.”
The announcement further states that “SCDOT’s goal is to complete the repairs in 30 days. The repair work is to be completed no later than August 14, 2016. This section of SC 9 serves as a school bus route. Schools in the area are scheduled to open on Monday, August 15, 2016. In addition, SC 9 serves as a primary route that provides a connection for the movement of people and goods across the Upstate.”
The announcement also states that the number of vehicles on SC 9 in the area is 5,050 per day with trucks making up 25 percent of the average vehicle traffic.
It further states that the SCDOT is in the process of selecting a contractor to perform the repairs.
While the bridge is closed, the announcement states there will be a 35-mile detour in place utilizing SC 49, SC 211, and SC 105.
Once the temporary repairs are made, the announcement states that there will be a new contract that will call for “constructing four new bridges crossing the Broad River, Canal Road, S. 46 and Lockhart Drive (S. 31). The project is tentatively set to be put out for bids by the end of 2016. The new SC 9 Bridge will be built next to the existing bridge. The existing bridge will remain open until the new structure is completed.”
The announcement quotes Secretary of Transportation Christy A. Hall who said “we recognize that the SC 9 Bridge is a vital link to the community and is an important connection in the transportation network for the state. This bridge is an example of the type of concerns that we have raised regarding the infrastructure crisis we are facing here in SC. A long-term, sustainable funding solution must be found in order to address the years of deferred maintenance on the existing road and bridge network for our state.”
The SC 9 bridge was one of the subjects addressed by Union County Supervisor Frank Hart in his report to Union County Council at its June meeting. Hart announced that SC House District 42 Rep. Mike Anthony and the rest of the Union County Legislative Delegation had secured $200,000 in state funding for Lockhart to help pay for the relocation of the utilities running along the existing SC 9 bridge. He pointed out that relocating the utilities is projected to cost $300,000 and while the construction of the new bridge itself is being funded with state and federal funds, funding the relocation of the utilities is the responsibility of Lockhart. The town did not have that kind of money, however, until Anthony and the delegation secured $200,000 in state funding with the remaining $100,000 coming from the Union County Transportation Committee.
This story courtesy of the SC Department of Transportation.