OHIO DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
DISTRICT 11 OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS - 2201 Reiser Avenue SE, New Philadelphia, OH 44663
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Fort Steuben Bridge Will Remain Closed
NEW PHILADELPHIA, OHIO (January 15, 2009) – After completing a special inspection of the Fort Steuben Bridge in Jefferson County last Friday, officials from the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) have determined that the bridge will remain closed until it is removed later this year.
A team of bridge inspectors and engineers, from District 11’s New Philadelphia office and ODOT’s central office in Columbus, performed a special inspection of the bridge after routine maintenance operations noticed a slight dip in the floor of the bridge last Thursday, Jan. 8th, 2009.
"The inspection revealed significant deteriorating changes in the floor condition of the bridge," said ODOT District 11 Deputy Director Dick Bible, P.E. "Because of this change, we’ve decided to keep the bridge closed to all traffic until it is demolished later this year."
The removal of the Fort Steuben Bridge is currently scheduled for this fall. At this time, any further repairs to extend the bridge’s life another nine months would not be cost effective or prudent.
"This bridge has served the region very well for 80 years, but we’ve known for a long time this day would come when the bridge simply outlived its useful life," said Mr. Bible. "We have invested millions of dollars in the infrastructure in Eastern Ohio to keep the businesses and people of this region moving and will continue to work with our neighbors across the river to keep our transportation systems moving forward."
All traffic will continue to be rerouted onto the Veterans Memorial Bridge or U.S. Route 22 – the structure intended to be the replacement for the Fort Steuben Bridge when it was constructed in 1990. Most traffic has already shifted to the Veterans Memorial Bridge due to load limits placed on the Fort Steuben Bridge in 2006 removing all truck traffic.
ODOT reminds motorists in Ice & Snow, Take it Slow this winter.
For information on additional lane and road closures caused by construction, accidents, flooding or other related traffic events, visit ODOT's gateway to traffic and roadway information at www.BuckeyeTraffic.org.
For more information, contact: Becky McCarty, Public Information Officer, at 330-308-3949 or at Becky.McCarty@dot.state.oh.us.
ODOT District 11 serves Belmont, Carroll, Columbiana, Harrison, Holmes, Jefferson and Tuscarawas counties.
ODOT is an Equal Opportunity Employer.