Sampson County residents can expect deal with two bridge closures, and thus portions of the roads where they are located, over the next few months, one a temporary closure for repairs and a second for a complete bridge replacement.
Wright Bridge Road will be closed in both directions starting 8 a.m. on Aug. 4; the closure will continue through the evening of Aug. 7.
“We have some rehabilitation to do to the structure,” said Shannon Baylor, with Sampson County Bridge Maintenance, a department within the Department of Transportation. “This will just be some routine maintenance.”
The temporary closure of Wright Bridge Road is .6 of a mile west of US 701 (Garland Highway) and will include both lanes.
“The impact of this traffic project will be very low,” assured Baylor. The closures are posted as being a little longer than necessary in order to facilitate a buffer in the event of unforeseen problems.
“The closure should only take three to four days if it goes according to plan,” Baylor explained.
“With this project there will be no posted detour,” he said, detailing that that bridge work will mostly impact local residents and routine traffic normally in the area.
“There will be road closure signs and barriers to alert (motorists) at that location,” Baylor said.
The second bridge closure is located on Wildcat Road near where it intersects with Ivanhoe Road. That bridge will be closed until around Oct. 3.
“There will be a posted detour on that closure,” Baylor explained. “That bridge is due for a total replacement with an updated version.”
“The new bridge will be structurally sound for a bunch of years to come,” he stressed, noting that records show this particular bridge was built back in 1947.
“We have a list that we go by,” he said. “And some bridges deteriorate faster than others because of environmental reasons.”
“The new bridge will be good for another 60 to 70 years,” Baylor explained. “With the weather here recently we are allowing for an extra day or two.” He said that the closure could last into mid October.
“The detour won’t take citizens too far out of the way,” Baylor detailed.
The detour will runs Firetower Road north to NC 41, then continues onto NC 41 East to Belvin Road. Motorists will then continue on south on Belvin Road to Wildcat Road.
Currently, NCDOT has approximately 5,100 bridges considered structurally deficient or functionally obsolete.