Cypress Creek Bridge needs major repairs

Published 12:14 pm Wednesday, August 10, 2016

By Diana McFarland

Managing editor

The Virginia Department of Transportation has determined that the Cypress Creek Bridge in Smithfield is structurally deficient and must undergo repairs.

The problem lies with deteriorating beams, according to VDOT spokesperson Tiffany Whitfield.

Whitfield said the project is expected to go out for advertisement in 2018 and will include replacing the first three beams and deck spans on the west side of the bridge, as well as some preventative maintenance for the entire structure. {mprestriction ids=”1,2,3,4,5,6″}

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Whitfield said determining that a bridge is structurally deficient does not mean its in danger of collapse or is unsafe. The rating is determined through a zero to nine-point scale, and if one of three parts — the deck, the beams or foundations and posts — is rated at four or less, then it is considered structurally deficient, according to the National Bridge Inspection Standards as provided by VDOT.

A “four” rating means the bridge is experiencing advanced section loss, deterioration, spalling or scour. Spalling refers to deterioration of the concrete surface and scour is soil erosion.

Bridges rated three or less are considered serious, critical or in an imminent failure condition.

The Cypress Creek bridge was built in 1975.

Franklin Residency Administrator Joe Lomax is expected to address the bridge’s condition at an upcoming Isle of Wight Board of Supervisors meeting, Whitfield said.

Further details about traffic patterns during construction and the length of project are unavailable at this time, Whitfield said.  {/mprestriction}