Traffic stops for Natchez Trace bridge spans

By Becky Jane Newbold, Managing Editor

Photos Hulon O. Dunn, Editor and Publisher

Concrete spans pano www.lewisherald.com

Photo Hulon O. Dunn, Editor & Publisher

Bridge spans for the Natchez Trace Parkway stopped traffic Friday, July 8, 2016 as several trucks hauling the 120 feet long concrete spans made their way through the downtown area.

Local law enforcement assisted in what resulted in a five hour delay, Chief of Police Sam Livingston commented.

A bridge over the Little Swan Creek on the Natchez Trace Parkway between Highway 412 and the Meriwether Lewis Monument at milepost 386.9 was the “worst bridge on the parkway,” Chief of Maintenance Barry Boyd explained in a phone interview Tuesday.  A redesign of the bridge from a three span to a two span “lessens the impact on the stream beneath,” he added.

Photo Hulon O. Dunn, Editor & Publisher

Photo Hulon O. Dunn, Editor & Publisher

Final girders were added Friday and work is underway on wooden decking in preparation for pouring concrete in the next few weeks, Boyd continued.

“There were two sets of columns on the old bridge.  The new one will be a one column bridge,” Boyd said.

Construction is being handled by the Kovilic Construction Company and is expected to be completed by late fall.

Another bridge on the parkway over the Big Swan Creek, north of the Little Swan Creek bridge, will also require maintenance, Boyd indicated.  But no closures are to be expected with that repair.

Work began November 2015 closing a portion of the parkway.  A detour from Highway 20 to Highway 412 may be followed along Big Swan Creek Raod.  See a link to a map of the detour at www.lewisherlad.com.

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