The Missouri Department of Transportation says just two-and-a-half years after it completed its most intense bridge replacement project ever, 641 bridges are in critical condition, according to a press release sent out late last month.
Of those 641 bridges, 16 are within the boundaries of the three-county Lake of the Ozarks area. Camden County has the largest number of critical bridges at 10, with three each in Miller and Morgan counties.
State Bridge Engineer Dennis Heckman said another 50 bridges has been added to MoDOT’s critical list in the less than three years since the end of a project that replaced some 800 plus bridges statewide.
“When we completed the Safe & Sound Bridge Improvement Program in 2012, we stemmed the tide for a while,” he said. “But we knew that the curve would start going up again. Safe & Sound made a dent, however it did not repair or replace all of the state’s bad bridges. Now with a shrinking construction budget, the number of bad bridges is on the rise again.”
Several bridges in the Lake Area were replaced under the Safe & Sound project including both the U.S. 54 Niangua Bridge west of Camdenton and the Missouri 5 Niangua Bridge north of Camdenton as well as the Hurricane Deck Bridge near Sunrise Beach. Several smaller bridges in all three counties were also replaced.
Source: News Tribune