Wednesday July 31, 2013

HALIFAX -- The Selectboard will be drafting a letter to send to Holden Engineering regarding the restoration of Old County North Bridge.

"This has sort of been a project that's been ongoing," said Halifax Selectboard Chairwoman Edee Edwards. "We started off believing we could replace the wood deck with concrete decking but it turned out, the existing beams weren't going to support that weight."

Before the letter goes out, board members plan to conduct more research to get a clearer idea on how to move forward on the project.

On July 29, the Halifax Selectboard held a special meeting to discuss the future of the bridge. It is a bridge that was not considered to be a part of post Tropical Storm Irene damage assessment. Still, its decking needs replacing, which has been the topic of the board's conversations of the bridge.

"We have been working with an engineer to figure out how to best replace it," said Edwards.

The board researched several viable options. It found four or five different options of possible bridge designs. During discussions, the supported weight load for the bridge being planned was increasing, Edwards said.

When looking at cost estimates, the Selectboard started asking "if that level of weight was really necessary."

"It's a bridge that goes to a road that leads to a town trail, so it's not traveled a lot. We want to make sure we're sizing it appropriately," said Edwards.


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The board plans to sign the letter to the engineering firm at the next board meeting on Aug. 6.

The board has received various e-mails from residents that live in the surrounding area. They gave feedback on how they think the bridge should be designed, which echoed concerns of the Selectboard about weight limit and size.

Chris Mays can be reached at 802-254-2311, ext. 273, or cmays@reformer.com. Follow Chris on Twitter @CMaysReformer.