The Orange Leader
The old swing bridge on FM 1442 is approved for renovation with funds from the Ike 2.2 project.
Grant Administrator David Waxman said he funds were made available because the contract states rejuvenate or replace the bridge that has been in use since the 1960s.
“It is more advantageous to replace the bridge,” Waxman said during the Public Hearing on Tuesday.
Surveys on the bridge after Hurricane Rita and Ike showed the bridge is in need of major repairs.
The funds from the Round 2 Disaster Grant and with the matching funds from the CDBG will cover the $15,629,775 for the project.
“We will have more than adequate funds to do what we need to have done,” Waxman said.
David Dubose, commissioner, pct. 3, asked Waxman if he understood it correctly that grant funds were to be used to match with a grant.
“Yes, with CDBG we can,” Waxman said. “It is a unique opportunity and it is not the first time it has been done.”
Grant funds being used as the matching funds required for the grant means the cost to the county will be zero dollars.
TxDOT will participate in the project and were unwilling to replace the bridge. They did agree to refurbishing the structure.
David Dubose, commissioner, pct. 1, asked if a way to avoid a technical going out every time the bridge needed to be opened.
“There is a possibility boats would be able to open it via a frequency on the boat but safety measures would need to be in place,” Carl Slacum, county engineer said. “It has been done in Florida.”The bridge will be 99.5% new upon completion.
“The biggest issue is that construction must be completed by December 31, 2015,” Slacum said.
John Dubose said that while it is seen as a renovation by TxDOT standards it will be essentially be a new bridge which can last another 50 years.
Cost of Renovation
REI (inspection) $532,237
Grand Total $15,629,775