SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Sept. 29, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Shuttered to the public for more than five years for safety concerns, Springfield Missouri's, historic Jefferson Avenue Footbridge ? one of the largest pedestrian bridges over railroad tracks in the United States - will soon be given another chance at life.
The City of Springfield recently received authorization from the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to solicit bids from qualified contractors for the rehabilitation of the 119-year-old cantilever truss bridge. Bids will be accepted through 10:30 a.m., Oct. 19, 2021.
The Jefferson Avenue Footbridge was the first of its kind to be built in Missouri and is unique in engineering and historic significance. Constructed in 1902 by the American Bridge Company of Pennsylvania, the 562-foot-long steel bridge allows pedestrians to cross 13 tracks of the Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) rail yard to reach Springfield's revitalizing Commercial Street Historic District. Its innovative multi-arched cantilever design made it possible for workers to construct the bridge with minimal impacts to the rail lines below. The bridge represents the history of two cities coming together ? North and South ? and the community's connection to the railroad. Placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2003, the footbridge continues as an iconic symbol of growth and opportunity today.
The footbridge was closed March 1, 2016 after corrosion and steel loss were discovered during a routine inspection. The City hired Springfield-based Great River Engineering (GRE) to conduct an in-depth structural evaluation of the bridge. Results uncovered deficiencies in more than one third of the primary structural members and required the continued closure of the bridge until repairs could be made.
The solicited construction project will involve the complete rehabilitation of the existing 25,066-pound steel bridge structure, involving the repair and replacement of deficient structural members, removal and replacement of wood decking, replacement of stairs, application of a new paint system and installation of lighting. Two elevators will be installed on the north and south approaches to bring the bridge into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
The City has budgeted $3.2 million for construction and related engineering services. Fundraising efforts continue to support the rehabilitation and ongoing maintenance of the bridge.
Media contact: Cora Scott at 417-380-3352 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
SOURCE City of Springfield
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