Directors vote to replace Walnut Street bridge

By Emma Milner
City of Arkadelphia

ARKADELPHIA — The City of Arkadelphia’s Board of Directors  unanimously voted in favor of replacing the Walnut Street bridge, which was  closed indefinitely by Arkansas Department of Transportation (ArDOT) officials three weeks ago.  

The vote came during last night’s board meeting.  

The directors approved a contract from Southern State Construction to replace the Walnut Street bridge. This includes removing the existing deck,  repairing the footings, pouring new concrete and installing new guardrails.  

City Manager Gary Brinkley says he and his staff worked diligently to find the safest, most cost-effective option to reopen the bridge. After speaking with several engineers, Brinkley says it became clear replacing the bridge was the only option.  

“There was so much wear to the existing bridge, it would take more time and money to repair it, than to replace it” Brinkley says. “This investment will ensure our first responders are able to take the quickest route possible when responding to calls in that area, provides ambulances with easy access to the  airport in the event an air transfer is needed, and makes travel within the city  easier for our southern residents.” 

Southern State Construction estimates the project will take approximately three weeks to complete, weather permitting. Work is expected to begin at the end of next week.

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