West Highland Bridge to be repaired this summer
NORTHFIELD CENTER -- Motorists who routinely use the West Highland Bridge that goes over Brandywine Creek will have to look for an alternate route this summer.
The current bridge, which was built in 1966 and "is currently load limited," will be rehabilitated, said Heidi Swindell, a spokesperson for the Summit County Engineer's office.
According to legislation from Summit County Council, the project, which will cost around $575,000, will be paid for by the county through the motor vehicle and gas tax funds. Traffic is expected to be detoured for 120 days.
Improvements include a new reinforced concrete deck, a new bridge railing, painting of the structural steel, substructure repairs, new reinforced concrete approach slabs, and other roadway work.
According to the Summit County Engineer's office, the work would need to be completed this year to avoid a conflict with a future resurfacing project on Olde Eight Road.
"The project manager is hoping it will be bid out in late March or April," Swindell said.
Rich Reville, the chair of the Northfield Center Township trustees, said the project "is going to be a big headache."
"We will have to reroute the traffic all the way to Route 82, and we will have to reroute it through either Boston Heights or the middle of Northfield Center," Reville said. "There's no shortcut. That means more traffic for 82 and Boston Heights. The project went from 90 days to 120 days."
There is potential for the project to become more involved if additional repairs are needed, Reville said.
"They have to take the deck off to look at the subdeck," Reville said. "If the subdeck doesn't need repaired, it can be done faster. But if it needs repaired, it makes it a very lengthy project."
Reporter April Helms can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org