Replacing two bridges on New Hope Church Road is one step closer this week as the Franklin County Commission voted to seek bids for the project.
“This is a project that actually includes two bridges over two creeks,” said Eva Gadcke, Franklin County’s highway administrator.
The main bridge is currently gone, Gadcke said, adding, “We need to build one there.”
The former bridge was damaged in a 2006 flood and removed because it was causing property erosion, she explained.
And a low-water crossing will be replaced with a single-span bridge, Gadcke said.
First District County Commissioner Tim Brinker responded, saying, “So there is hope for New Hope.”
The larger bridge will cross Indian Creek while the smaller one will go over Little Indian Creek, Gadcke noted.
The total project cost is estimated to be about $1.1 million with about $300,000 of the cost covered by the county and the remaining $800,000 by federal dollars.
Gadcke said she would like to have the new bridges built this year with construction possibly beginning by the end of July.
Depending on which contractor is chosen, the project could take a total of about four months, she said. It could be a shorter amount of time if the contractor is able to work on both bridges at the same time, she added.
Gadcke said the road currently dead-ends where the old bridge used to be, and there is a barrier to prevent motorists from going into the creek.
The new bridges will serve as an east-west corridor for the southeastern portion of the county, she said.
The project bids will be opened on May 28 at 10 a.m. in the Franklin County Commission Chambers.