Officials weigh options with red-listed bridges

  • A portion of Birchdale Road that passes over White Brook was closed in July on recommendation by the state. Monitor file

Monitor staff
Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Drivers that used to frequent Birchdale Road in Bow that connects Page Road and Clinton Street in Concord will need to stick with their alternate route for at least another year, unless town officials go with a temporary replacement.

Bow closed a short portion of the road in July after the state red-listed a small bridge over White Brook and recommended it be closed and replaced.

Bob Durfee, an engineer with New England structural engineering firm DuBois & King, told town officials Tuesday it would cost about $830,000 to replace.

The 13-foot culvert, which state inspectors concluded to have “no remaining live load capacity,” was found to be significantly deteriorating upon an inspection last summer.

Bow Town Manager David Stack said there is enough money in capital reserve funds to cover the project, but reallocating and spending the money would need to be approved by voters at town meeting next March. The state is expected to cover a portion of the costs, but that money won’t kick in until 2024.

But members of the board agreed it would be better to spend the money in 2017 rather than 2024, when the price could be higher.

Though the culvert is only 13 feet, it will be replaced with a 26-foot bridge to meet regulations set by the state Department of Environmental Services.

Durfee also presented temporary options for the town if it wants to wait and permanently replace the bridge in 2024. Those options include a steel truss bridge (also known as a Bailey bridge) for $125,000, a steel beam bridge ($185,000 for two lanes, $128,000 for one lane), or a bridge using concrete deck panels for about $185,000.

Each of the three temporary options can be relocated to a different site after the permanent bridge takes place. The bridge on Page Road also needs repair, and construction is set to begin this fall on the Dunklee Road bridge over Bow Bog Brook.